The National Institute of Music and Dance, in collaboration with the International Theater Institute (ITI), presents the official International Dance Day 2022 message. The author of this year’s message is Kang Sue-jin, South Korean dancer and Artistic Director of the Korean National Ballet.

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International Dance Day Message 2022 by Kang Sue-jin:

The Covid-19 catastrophe has stopped life as we so freely knew it and being amidst this tragedy makes us rethink the meaning of “dance” and “dancers” In the distant past, dance was a primal means of expression and communication through gestures; becoming performance art that moved the soul and inspired the audience. It is a momentary art that is difficult to restore to its original form once completed because it`s created with the entire body and soul. Dance is made of ephemeral moments, which destines dancers to be on the move forever. Yet, Covid-19 has restricted and even blocked the art of dance in its original form. Even though the situation is improving, dance performances are still subject to many restrictions. This makes us cherish the precious memories of times when dance and dancers sparkled like jewels, conveying human anguish and anxiety, will and hope for life, and illuminated the world. Similarly, it is important to recall that during the aftershocks of the Black Death in Medieval Europe, the ballet Giselle depicting love beyond death was performed at the Paris Opera on 28 June 1841 and received an explosive response. Since then, Giselle has been performed all over Europe and around the world to comfort and encourage the souls of mankind ravaged by the pandemic. It is also my understanding of that point, which was first demonstrated in that very performance of Giselle, is the magnificent spirit of a ballerina trying to escape the gravity of the world`s hardships. The lonely and weary audience is thirsty for the sympathy and comfort of the dancers. As dancers, we believe that the flapping of our wings gives hope to the hearts of those who love the art of dance and gives them the courage to overcome this pandemic.

My heart is already starting to pound.

Kang Sue-jin




Kang Sue-jin
Dancer, Artistic Director of the Korean National Ballet

Kang Sue-jin (b. 24 April 1967), Artistic Director of Korean National Ballet. Honorary doctorate degree in the Department of Dance, Sookmyung Women’s University in Seoul, Republic of Korea. Stuttgart Ballet soloist and principal dancer for over 15 years. Appointed “Kammertanzerin (Royal Court Dancer)”, Germany, in 2007. Honorary Ambassador of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.
Kang Sue-jin uses her fame and artistic skills for introducing disabled children to dance.

1985 Prix de Lausanne, Scholarship
1990 President Prize, Republic of Korea
1999 Prix Benois de la Danse, Best Female Dancer
1999 Order of Cultural Merit, Bogwan, Republic of Korea
2001 9th KBS Global Korean Award, Arts & Culture Category
2002 The Ho-Am Foundation, Ho-Am Prize, Arts Category
2007 John Cranko Association, John Cranko Award, Germany
2007 Order of Civil Merit, Seokryu Medal, Republic of Korea
2014 Order of Merit of Baden-Württemberg, Germany
2014 Kowoon Foundation, Kowoon Cultural Award
2015 Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Korea, Sejong Cultural Award, Art and Culture
2015 Association of Korean Journalists, Proud Korean Award, Art and Culture
2016 Paradise Culture Foundation, Paradise Award, Special Merits
2016 Korean-German Society, 9th Mirok-Li Prize
2017 7th Korea Wave Awards, Award for Service of Excellence in Pure Art

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