We're excited to reveal our lineup for 2017 Korean Festival Houston!
Check their bios below!
MEET OUR MC FOR OUR FESTIVAL
As a native Houstonian, Michelle Choi watched the Korean community grow in its own way. While pursuing her passion for journalism, she had the chance of experiencing internships and different news stations before returning home to Houston. She's excited to see how much the community has grown and was delighted when we asked her to be our MC!
DANakaDAN is an alternative hip-hop artist based in Los Angeles, CA. As a Korean Adoptee, he produces content that chronicles his experience with self-identity, addiction, and adoption. This has included a full length album “Stuntman” and a documentary series detailing his very personal journey meeting his biological family, including an identical twin brother he never knew about (who also raps). He’s been featured on Huffington Post, NPR, the BBC, DramaFever, and Hulu and collaborated with the likes of Wong Fu Productions, Far East Movement, and David Choi. He currently works as the lead creator and producer at ISAtv (International Secret Agents), a platform and entertainment network for Asian American programming and content.
He has a new album out now - stream it, download it, do whatever you want with it by looking up @DANakaDAN online.
Reigning from Los Angeles, CA, Priscilla Liang (Priska) is a rising vocalist in the music industry. Alluring both audiences and judges alike, her talent captivates anyone who listens to her sing. She began her love for music at the age of four on the piano and later found her voice. Though bullied during her youth, she found comfort and strength in expressing herself through songwriting. This medium greatly propelled her to new heights, where she was able to compete in competitions and showcases, alike. With her warm smile and powerful words, her songs won’t fail to touch your soul. Check her out on her website!
You can find her music on Spotify and YouTube.
Salmunori, literally meaning "Korean traditional percussion instruments playing" consists of using four types of percussion instruments. Deriving from the traditional agricultural society in Korea, the four instruments were once said to represent the various weather conditions. Each piece represented each element respectively; the Janggu for rain, the kkwaenggwari for thunder, the jing for wind, and the buk for clouds. When combined together, this ritual would bring bountiful harvest for the villagers.
To present the traditional ways of Korea, Rice University’s WOORI is a group that dedicates themselves in practicing and teaching others to keep this tradition alive. With their own blend of modern techniques, they have helped this once lost ritual into a blossoming masterpiece.
Stephen Jung, stage name J.U. "Just Underestimated", born and raised in the beautiful city and state Houston, Texas. He graduated from UT Austin in 2007 and is a Lambda Phi Epsilon alum. In 2010, Stephen was a finalist for Kollaboration's stage competition. A little later, he signed with Ambassador Way Entertainment, owned by lead singer, Brian Angel, of P-Diddy’s group, Day 26.
He has opened for Slim Thug, Chamillionaire, ZRO, Esg and other members of the Screwed Up Click. Another fun fact - he has a cousin who is reputable actor named Choi Min Soo.
J.U. is also currently a practicing Doctor of Chiropractic, specializing in sports medicine and had the blessing and opportunity to treat some players of the Texans, Rockets, and other Houston Hip-hop musicians.
“Apollo” World Show Team shows that Indoor cycle gymnastics can be beautiful. As the world’s first professional Indoor Cycle Gymnastic Gala show team, they have a repertoire of Indoor Cycle artists and famous show works.
In order to align the shoulders with the world’s excellent teams at Indoor Cycle Gymnastic Competition, we select medalists by audition and invite famous choreographers and trainers for intensive training and practice, and we are reborn as the best professional show team.
Performances and events related to sports the special events of Jackie Cycle Masters are held to promote the excellence of the Jackie Cycle movement around the world and to be a pride of Indoor cyclists.
Tigers Martial Arts Group
The Tigers Martial Arts Group Demonstration Team has been a part of the school for 11 years. It's comprised of students with the drive to do their best in Tae Kwon Do and to share the joys of Tae Kwon Do with others. We perform many demos in the Katy area, as well as demos for special events such as the Korean Festival in downtown Houston. Our team members range from color belts with at least one year of training to black belts with over eight years of training. Our demonstrations start by showing basic skills then progresses to more advanced techniques.
DJ Kid Stylez (Jeff Chen)
A DJ/Producer from Houston with over 20 years of experience, this veteran DJ has rocked sold-out venues across the nation and performed on nationally syndicated radio mix shows. Now making his own remixes and tracks, this DJ has recently found a whole new love for music and performing.
As an open format DJ, this party rocker is well-known for surprising crowds with “left turns,” as well as performing on-the-fly edits and live blends in his high-energy sets. He draws on his extensive music knowledge to perform crowd-pleasing sets that break genre barriers. Jeff is a master at reading crowds, and any given night you might hear a mix of various genres, all perfectly fused together.
Supporting multiple Armin Van Buuren tours, as well as many other EDM artist tours, he has performed at the nation’s premier Halloween EDM festival, Something Wicked, for years and also the world’s largest 24-Hour EDM mix show, The New Year’s Eve Tailgate Party, one of the top rated EDM stations in the nation (Energy 95.7). Most recently, Jeff was chosen to be an official DJ at the legendary Club Nomadic for Super Bowl LI, where he performed with The Chainsmokers and Snoop Dogg.
Nori is a genre-bending band from Austin, Texas. One-part jazz, one-part folk, and one-part world, the music is diverse as the makeup of its musicians. With Akina Adderley on vocals, Erik Telford on trumpet, Nick Litterski on keys, Aaron Allen on upright bass, and Andy Beaudoin on drums, Austinist describes Nori as “truly a monster collection of extremely talented Austin musicians.” Enriching an aesthetic deeply rooted in American jazz and folk music, the ensemble playfully weaves together a myriad of global influences giving rise to a seamless synthesis of sound. These musical explorations expertly balance the narrative of the song with wide-open improvisations, echoing the transcendent tones of Nina Simone, Bill Frisell, John Coltrane and Joni Mitchell.
Gayageum by Ryoo Myoung Soon
Dance Performance by Lee Yun Hwa Dance Group and Kim Kuja School of Dance
When it comes to Korean traditions, there’s nothing more beautiful or colorful than dancing to music in traditional garments.
The Lee Yun Hwa Dance Group and the Kim Kuja School of Dance delivers jaw dropping and awe-stunning visuals. Accompanied by drums and sashes, these talented women help bring this ancient wonder alive.
As a special feature, they will also perform Gayageum, a 12-string instrument. Originally named “Gayago”, Gayageum was usually accompanied for court music, chamber music, and lyrics songs. Gayageum are available in a variety of string sets including, 13, 17, 18, 21, 22, or 25 strings. Coloring dancing infused with hypnotic instrumental sounds this is one performance you won’t want to miss.
Kuk Sool Won
A martial art as old as Korea itself, Kuk Sool Won involves hapkido (throwing), self defense maneuvers, archery, knife throwing, gymnastics, and so much more. This martial art was created by combining three ancient forms of Korean martial arts, known as BoolKyo MuSool (Buddhist Martial Arts), Koongloong Musool (Royal Court Martial Arts), and SahDoh MuSool (Tribal Martial Arts), by the now known Grandmaster of Kuk Sool Won In-hyuk Suh in 1958. Kuk Sool Won has been continuously promoted internationally by the World Kuk Sool Association and is recognized in the martial arts community as one of the most effective and comprehensive systems of traditional Korean martial arts in existence today.
This is one of the many agricultural rituals Korean farmers performed for a good harvest. Better known as Pungmul, this Korean Folk Music ritual includes a trifecta of singing, dancing and drumming. Also known as Nongak (or “Farmer’s Music”), those who participated would incorporate acrobatics to spin the ribbons on their hats, while dancing to the beat of the drums and chants.