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Intangible Heritage of Humanity List print

Namsadang Nori; Marvelous Feats of the Namsadang Clowns (Designated 2009)

Namsadangnori (남사당놀이) generally refers to traditional Korean performances staged by Namsadangpae (남사당패), a vagabond troupe of male performers.

Namsadangnori was a tradition rooted in the experience of the common people, and performances were staged especially for them. Musicians, mask dancers and puppet shows could relieve the grief of the poor and disenfranchised, while criticizing the immorality of the yangban (noble class) through their sarcastic humor. Tighrope walking and somersault with interesting commentary in between the acts makes the stage even more exciting.

After the Joseon Dynasty, Namsadangpae troupes performed nationwide and acted as an outlet for suppressed feeling of powerless commoners as they were encouraged by great music, performances and dancing.

<Last updated on October 5, 2015>

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