A video of talented 7-year-old Kim Duk Soo (the founder of traditional Korean music group Samul Nori) dancing has recently surfaced and it is as interesting and impressive as it is adorable.
This video, captured during a ceremony in Daejeon in 1959, shows a 7-year-old performing in a traditional pungmul dance. He showed incredible talent as he danced, drummed, and twirled his sangmo (a festive ribbon hat).
This 7 year old kid was Kim Duk Soo. Now 64, he is considered one of the 50 most influential people after the independence of Korea.
He had been chosen by his father to carry on one of Korea’s hallowed musical traditions, as a wandering Namsadang. By the age of 5 he had been awarded the President’s Citation and his musical career only took off from there! In 1978, he founded an ensemble called SamulNori, which is credited with bringing the folk genre of Pungmul Nori back into the public eye.
Kim Duk Soo has come a long way from his roots in that video from 1959. His contribution to Korea’s music and traditional culture is undeniable and we celebrate it by looking back at this video.