May 24, 2020
KCNA Pyongyang Times

Open-air theatre has a facelift after reconstruction

Date: 23/05/2020 | Source: Pyongyang Times | Read original version at source

Many monumental structures are named after youth in the DPRK.

Among them is the Open-Air Theatre in the Pyongyang Municipal Youth Park that boasts over 60-year history.

President Kim Il Sung came to the foot of Moran Hill in Kyongsang valley (present Kyongsang-dong in Central District, Pyongyang) in early spring when the winter cold did not yet subside to choose the sites for the youth park and open-air theatre.

The construction projects whose grounds were broken on March 1 1959 were completed in a little over 70 days, and their inaugural ceremonies took place in the presence of the President on May 15.

According to Im Kon Il, manager of the theatre, the performance celebrating its inauguration raised the curtain with Song of General Kim Il Sung, immortal revolutionary hymn.

Since then on, the theatre has served as the host of mass rally, lecture and other meetings and art performances of schoolchildren. It was renovated in June 1971 with the Sixth Congress of the League of Socialist Working Youth of Korea as a momentum, in such a way as to be able to give such large-scale performances as the grand song, dance and poetical drama “Song of loyalty of young vanguard”.

Pyongyang Sinmun newspaper said on July 4 1973 that except the days when it failed to be open due to unfavourable weather conditions, the theatre hosted mass lectures, a round of demonstration sports game, 50 film shows, 52 rounds of song and dance dissemination and others that year (1973) with the number of participants totalling some 231 660.

Many international events including those of the 13th World Festival of Youth and Students also took place at the theatre.

The operation of the theatre continued even in the period of the Arduous March and forced march when the country experienced harsh trials.

According to the May 15 1999 issue of Chongnyonjonwi newspaper, more than 40 million citizens, youth and students visited the theatre for the past 40 years and over 150 rounds of youth gatherings, big and small, were held there including some 40 international events.

After embarking on another reconstruction project in October 2018, it had an inaugural ceremony with splendour on January 16 this year to mark the 74th anniversary of the Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist Youth League.

It is equipped with an 10 000-seater auditorium, electronic display facilities, modern lighting and sound facilities, a rhythmical fountain that beautifully decorates the stage, a production office, an online lecture room and six hobby group rooms in a total building area of over 13 993 square metres,. It blends in well with picturesque Moran Hill as well as the magnificent buildings in downtown Pyongyang.

The main building typifying the theatre was given a final touch with coloured glass and well-trimmed granite and was roofed with smart metal plates on a large arch-style iron truss to add dignity to the building. The interior was designed to ensure convenience and aesthetics.

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