Pongsan County, Land of Mask Dance

The Pongsan Mask Dance is famous enough for Pongsan to be naturally associated with a word mask dance.

Pongsan County is situated in South Hwanghae Province. Its people say with pride that their county has many specialties like tasty edible and medical herbs, but what makes it special is the Pongsan Mask Dance.

From olden times Hwanghae Province was called the land of mask dance as it was popular in all parts of the province. The Pongsan Mask Dance was the most famous one among those of the province.

The Pongsan Mask Dance became famous because it has a long historical origin and it satirized and derided dissolute lives of monks or noblemen bitterly and sharply with peculiar descriptions of dancing.

As its history was the longest in Hwanghae Province and it was progressive in view of theme and artistic value, the Pongsan Mask Dance has been representative of Korea’s mask dance.

Chairman Kim Jong Il was much satisfied when he visited Unjong-ri, Pongsan County 20 years ago and appreciated the mask dance prepared by the farmers. That day the Chairman highly praised them by saying that it is of weighty significance in preserving the Juche character and national character to inherit and develop properly the excellent cultural wealth created by the ancestors and it is quite laudable to actively encourage folk dance.

Years have passed since that day. However, those in the county make efforts to hand down the Pongsan Mask Dance not only as a pride of their native land but as a valuable treasure and heritage of the country with the Chairman’s noble intention of patriotism in their mind.