|This recording comprises innovative new compositions for Geomungo performed by two of the most active ensembles in Seoul today. Led by Lee She-Hwan, Geumyul Akhoe is made up of the master and his students. Lee is the first to have performed the two North Korean pieces, Chulgang and First Bonghwa, in Korea. The other group, Imjeon Geomungo Ensemble, led by Lee Jae-Hwa, directs the students in a more experimental genre and has been the leader in re-inventing 8 and 9-string Geomungo for using in new modern compositions. The two ensembles featured in this recording perform North Korean compositions and new Geomungo works.
The Geomungo has been a revered instrument among scholarly elites for as long as Korean history. About 90% of all written old manuscripts and records in existence today are of this instrument and musically the Geomungo has held possibly the most important position for a very long time. Only in recent modern history, has this place been overtaken by the more colorful zither, Gayageum.