My trip first started with the Jecheon International Music & Film Festival (JIMFF) which was held from August, 13th, till August, 18th, 2015.
After a 12 hours trip from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to Incheon International Airport, or so. I mean when I woke up, I actually saw the screen below and got quite concerned right? Who wouldn’t be? According to Korean Air, we were about to land somewhere in the sea… Yes, South Korea is this vast expanse of blue water….
Anyways, I finally landed in Incheon and this is when my so much anticipated trip began.
I first met, 헤령 who welcomed me at the airport and drove me to Jecheon. She was a volunteer there and my translator. Since she was really nice, I just decided that for the rest of my stay, she would become my 한국어 선생님 (Korean teacher).
For the ones who don’t know, Jecheon (제천) is located in Chungcheongbuk province. It took around 3 hours to get there by car, which gave me the opportunity to actually discover the very mountainous landscape of South Korea. Quite different from the urban scene of Paris.
My hotel, was located by the Cheongpung lake and I must say, the view was breathtaking. The main venue was located by the Cheongpung lake which at sunset transformed into a compelling midsummer night dream.
I loved the special atmosphere coming out from the open-air stage surrounded by nature. As a music lover, I really could feel how music was able to bring generations and people together. During this festival, I was able to listen to music but also watch music. It wasn’t just about a visual experience. I experienced films both through my eyes and ears. Music definitely plays with our unconscious and emotions, you don’t need to know the meaning of the song to understand what’s going on, on-screen. This is something you feel. Music amplifies emotions and reality which at some point can become that strong that you actually forget about yourself and your surroundings, only to live the moment and get overwhelmed by emotions.
The festival truly celebrated how complementary film and music are to each other by showcasing a wide range of programs from documentaries to fiction to concert films to short films. I had the opportunity to discover personalities and listen to great music. Below, find a sneak peek of what I was able to see during the opening night.
The festival kicked off with the opening documentary « Try To Remember » directed by Kim Dae-hyun, followed by special performances by Byeon Woo Lee, Mia (Kim Sisters) & Tommy Vig and The Barberettes.
« Try To Remember » is a documentary about the first Korean vocal girl group Kim Sisters. A trio who made their career in the United States during the 1950s and 1960s. Carried by the charismatic Min-ja, the documentary was followed by a special performance by Min-ja joined by The Barberettes (바버렛츠), the time-traveling girl group.