What Hanyang Professors Do in Their Spare Time (Part 2)
Ballet-watching, tennis-playing, and classical music-listening
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In a previous news piece, three Hanyang professors with very interesting hobbies were introduced. In this week's news story, three additional professors from other departments have shared their fascinating hobbies, from ballet, tennis, and even classical music.
Ballet-watching professor, Hwang Se-jin
Professor Hwang Se-jin's (Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology) hobby, deeply soaked into his daily life, is watching beautiful ballet performances. Hwang’s poetic praises of ballet such as “the utmost beauty on the planet Earth,” “art at its best,” and “human’s best impression” speak for a mere fragment of his deep affection towards ballet.
Hwang first started enjoying ballet performances through his love of classical music. As a student, he took part in an orchestra in the College of Medicine, and it did not take long for him to discover the wonders of the closely related fields of opera and ballet. Hwang says he came to fancy ballet for the ballerina and ballerino’s passion and endless practice and effort they devote for their shows. Ever since then, he has been a regular audience of ballet stages.
The most important thing in classic ballet is how precise the moves are, “and there is a surprising thrill when the dancer does it just perfectly,” says Hwang. He has watched the popular ballet pieces, ‘The Nutcracker’ and ‘Swan Lake’ each over thirty times. Especially, the particular scene in ‘Swan Lake’ of the princess dancing was so amazing that he replayed the video over a few thousand times. “Ballet presents us with pure happiness; after all, happiness is what life is all about,” says Hwang.
Tennis-playing professor, Ryu Su-yeol
Over the past 15 years, Professor Ryu Su-yeol (Department of Korean Language Education) has spent much of his spare time running on a court with his long time friend of tennis, which he calls 'an honest rectangle.' “You see, my time is mostly spent in a rectangle: my office or the tennis court,” joked Ryu.
Ryu comes to the court to play tennis at least two to three days a week. Many other professors also join, even running a Hanyang professors-tennis-club. Last year, the team attended the national tennis tournament of professors, competing with those from other universities. With many years of loving tennis, the sport has given many other fun anecdotes to tell as well. Ryu recalled that once, after playing seven games in a row, he was so exhausted that he could barely walk home. Also, there had been a few times when he was so carried away by the game that he almost missed the lecture time.
Ryu says that tennis has also taught him some important principles about life. “When playing a game with four players, we team the weakest player with the strongest player. That, for instance, teaches attitude towards the social disadvantaged groups,” explains Ryu. “I hope to be able to play tennis until I grow really old. Since they say that ‘tennis is the only sport where an 80-year-old can win over a 20-year-old,’ I hope to be that 80-year-old.”
Classical music-listening professor, Kim Sung-hwan
“I met my wife in the 1970s. She liked classical music, and I always followed her around, so I started listening to it as well,” recalled Professor Kim Sung-hwan (Division of International Studies). The music fascinated him in that the same music always sounded different depending on the orchestra and the conductor. Since then, visiting concert halls has been Kim’s new hobby.
On his bucket list, Kim wrote down--‘going to the famous foreign music festivals.’ Kim says he is progressing to a stage of crossing them out, by taking every opportunity during the holidays to visit the world's famous music festivals: the Swiss Lucerne Festival, the Salzburg Festival of Austria, and the German Bayreuth festival. Although he has already seen so many concerts, its ever-changing nature always fascinates him, making him eagerly anticipate each one all the same. “Once, my family and I were at the London’s Christmas concert, and my young daughter would not stop singing. However, my wife and I wanted to watch the concert so bad that we took turns, running from the concert hall to the outside corridor, half listening to the music and half looking after our daughter."
Kim says that classical music is charming because it calms his heart. His next goal is to make Korea’s music concert like the PyeongChang Music Festival a world-wide famous event.
Lim Ji-woo firstname.lastname@example.org Photos by Park Geun-hyung