Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Asiana Airlines Awarded the National Customer Satisfaction Index for 13 consecutive years

Asiana Airlines (President & COO: Young-Doo Yoon) received a 1st prize certificate for the domestic airline sector at the ‘2010 National Customer Satisfaction Index Awards’ hosted by KPC (Korea Productivity Center) in Seoul at the COEX Intercontinental Hotel on the 24th of March, 2010.
The Korea Productivity Center (KPC), conducts a survey (2010 National Customer Satisfaction Index) to customers ranging from 18 or older male and female who has traveled on the similar airline at least 4 times one way trip in the previous year about the airlines quality. Asiana Airlines being chosen as the number one domestic airliner this year has kept its 1st place since KPC conducted its survey 13 years ago in 1998.
President & CEO of Asiana Airlines Young-Doo Yoon commented “It is a great honor that Asiana Airlines has been chosen 1st place for 13 consecutive years of the NCSI survey. Our continuous investment in our cabin facilities, innovative and unique development of our service contents, and our service quality management system has given us this wonderful result. We will continue to do our best in providing satisfaction to our customers.”
Since its foundation in 1988, Asiana Airlines has continuously upgraded its safety and services with the philosophy of “Customer satisfaction through superiority in safety and service.” As a result, Asiana Airlines was chosen as the “2009 Airline of the Year” by ATW (Air Transport World), the world’s most prestigious air transport magazine and as a “5 Star Airline” for 4 consecutive years from Skytrax a world renowned airline research group. Asiana Airlines has been acknowledged as being one of the top service providing airliners by Korean and foreign institutions.

The World of Gods

Date: 9-11 April 2010
Venue: Various
Tel & Fax: 01357 522 008

E-mail: mtd@taiko.co.uk
Web: http://www.taiko.co.uk
Organiser: Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers

East meets west as thrillingly theatrical Japanese percussion combines with jazz creativity in this spectacular collaboration by the hugely acclaimed Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers and the internationally lauded Scottish National Jazz Orchestra.
As the UK’s first and only professional Taiko group, over the past fifteen years Mugenkyo has become synonymous with stunningly visual performances that range from industrially powerful rhythms to delicately expressive bamboo flute sequences and have wowed audiences at Glastonbury, Cork Jazz Festival, Canterbury Festival, The Brit Awards, BBC Last Night of the Proms and concert halls throughout the UK.
Featuring music specially researched and composed by SNJO director Tommy Smith, depicting the forces of nature in graphic dimensions, the World of the Gods presents a unique musical adventure by true masters of their respective arts.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

KAKERA: A PIECE OF OUR LIFE, a film by Momoko Andô

Date: 02/04/2010
Venue: The Institute of Contemporary Art, The Mall, London SW1Y 5AH
Fee: £9 / £8 Concessions / £7 ICA Members
Organiser: Third Window Films, ICA

Based on the best-selling manga ‘Love Vibes’ by Erika Sakurazawa and featuring a soundtrack by James Iha (former guitarist of The Smashing Pumpkins), the debut feature of Momoko Andô, is a delicately-nuanced portrait of two very different women, Haru and Riko. Haru is a college student who is frustrated by the lack of any real spark between herself and her idle, indifferent boyfriend, who only seems to be interested in her for sex. One day, while brooding over a cappuccino in a cafe, she catches the eye of Riko. Riko joins her, and the two strike up a conversation. They start to discuss life and Riko mentions that she has a job as a medical artist, creating body parts that attempt to emulate the function of those lost through accident and disease. Riko’s role is to cure the psychological traumas arising from the patient’s physical deficiencies by balancing body and soul. While Haru might be physically intact, Riko sees in her a certain emotional wanting to which she might provide a cure, and the two begin an all-encompassing relationship that draws Haru away from her dissatisfying routine and into a new and more emotionally fulfilling area of her life. As the loving relationship develops between the two, their bond is tested by Haru’s ex boyfriend, society’s view, and the growing pains of adolescents, as the couple experience the pains of discovering themselves and their place in the world. KAKERA: A PIECE OF OUR LIFE is a perceptive, well thought out drama, examining love, and desire.

So beautiful, so easy to use: VAIO range grows with chic, colourful VAIO E Series 14” and slim, big-screen VAIO E Series 17”

The fun, easy-to-use VAIO E Series of multimedia notebook computers grows with two great-value additions.
With vibrant, colourful looks and a 35.5cm screen size, new VAIO E Series 14” is perfect for everyday browsing, blogging or enjoying your digital media collection. Offering huge storage capacity (1 TB maximum), powerful graphics and an extra-large screen in a beautifully slim chassis, the new VAIO E Series 17” is the ultimate HD entertainment machine for all the family.
All new E Series models are designed with everyday ease of use firmly in mind. Touch the WEB button and start surfing without needing to boot up your PC. For even greater convenience, Quick Web Access now offers multiple tabbed browsing and a ‘split’ view that’s great for browsing two web pages side-by-side.
There’s also a dedicated ASSIST button, giving one-touch access to VAIO Care to help maintain, diagnose and troubleshoot your VAIO with just a few clicks.
Inside all VAIO E Series 14” and 17” you’ll find the all-new 2010 Intel® Core™ processor family, partnered with up to 4GB of high-speed DDR3 memory to make light of everyday computing tasks. Latest ATI Mobility Radeon™ 5000 series graphics handle image editing, HD movie playback and media-rich web sites with ease.
Three side-mounted USB ports are joined by a fourth high-speed eSATA/USB port that allows super-fast file transfers to an external drive up to 5x faster than via USB2.0.
Unique to VAIO, a choice of applications by Sony helps you get even more enjoyment out of your personal media collection. Launched with the front panel VAIO button, Media Gallery offers a refreshingly intuitive way to explore your music, photo and video collection. Sorting, editing and sharing your favourite moments are easier than ever with PMB (Picture Motion Browser) VAIO Edition.

VAIO E Series 14”
Gorgeously styled to stand out from the crowd, VAIO E Series 14” makes an unmistakable style statement. Glossy black or glossy white finishes are complemented by optional vivid pink, blue and green colourways that demand attention when you’re out and about.
A silvered VAIO logo ‘floats’ seductively on the notebook computer’s top cover, emphasizing the depth of the opulent high-gloss finish that’s accentuated further by a mesmerising pattern beneath. Inside, there’s a tactile, low-resistance touchpad that integrates seamlessly into the glossy, translucent palm rest.
With a detail-packed 1600x900 resolution and wide 16:9 aspect ratio, the 35.5cm (14.0”) VAIO Display with LED backlight offers a colourful, high-contrast view of movies, digital photos and more.

VAIO E Series 17”
Now there’s a fully-featured desktop replacement that offers great value for all your home computing needs. The new VAIO E Series 17” stands out from the crowd with its super-size screen and elegantly slim chassis that looks sensational in any living space.
Whether you’re editing photos or just browsing the web, you’ll enjoy a high-contrast, detail-packed picture on the generously-sized 43.8cm (17.3”) VAIO Display with LED backlight. Selected models offer Full HD (1920x1080) resolution for an even more breathtaking view of your digital photos or movies on Blu-ray Disc™.
The beautifully responsive keyboard is enhanced by a full-sized numeric keypad for comfortable, high-speed data entry, whether you’re gaming or catching up on household finances.
There’s space inside the slim yet capacious chassis for up to two hard disk drives. With a maximum 1 TB of storage (maximum, 2x 500GB), there’s plenty of room to accommodate the biggest media collections.
Ordering from Sony Style Store lets you tailor new VAIO E Series models to suit your personal needs. Customers buying online can configure VAIO E Series 14” with exclusive options including choice of processor and LCD display, Blu-ray Disc drive and up to 6GB RAM. Online customers can also specify their VAIO E Series 17” with a range of hard drive configurations and optional Blu-ray Disc writer.
Depending on country, the latest VAIO E Series 14” notebook computers will be available from beginning April. Also depending on country, the VAIO E Series 17” notebook computers will be available from end of March.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Japan Society Book Club: Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi

Date: Thursday, 8th April 2010, 7.00pm
Venue: The Old Star, 66 Broadway, Westminster, London SW1H 1DB
Free: Free for Japan Society members
Please email the office if you plan to attend

The book for discussion at this meeting is Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi. The book club itself is conducted in English but members can choose the language in which they read the book.
Every Thursday morning for two years in the Islamic Republic of Iran, a bold and inspired teacher named Azar Nafisi secretly gathered seven of her most committed female students to read forbidden Western classics. As Islamic morality squads staged arbitrary raids in Tehran, fundamentalists seized hold of the universities, and a blind censor stifled artistic expression, the girls in Azar Nafisifs living room risked removing their veils and immersed themselves in the worlds of Jane Austen, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Henry James, and Vladimir Nabokov. In this extraordinary memoir, their stories become intertwined with the ones they are reading.
The book club is held on the second Thursday of the month. There is no restriction on the nationality of the authors read, but books should be available in translation in both Japanese and English. The discussion is conducted mainly in English, but you can choose the language in which you read the book. The intention is simple; to explore the themes of the book, express personal opinions on the style and content, discuss how the book has changed (or not) in translation and to have a relaxed discussion with others who have similar interests.

The book club is informal and any member is welcome to attend. However, so that we can look out for you, please us know if you plan to come by email to
events@japansociety.org or tel: 020 7828 6330.

Discover Korean Food #25: Dr. Sook-Ja Yoon's "Neobiani, Grilled Slice Beef"

Neobiani is thinly sliced grilled beef with soy sauce seasoning. Neobiani means that the beef is sliced into broad sections. It is tender with a lot of knife slits in it.

Ingredients & Quantity
600 g beef (sirloin), 70 g (pear 140 g) pear juice Seasoning sauce : 90 g (5 tbsp) soy sauce, 36 g (3 tbsp) sugar, 21 g (1 tbsp) honey, 28 g (2 tbsp) minced green onion, 16 g (1 tbsp) minced garlic, 16 g (1 tbsp) ginger juice, 6 g (1 tbsp) sesame salt, 0.5 g (1/5 tsp) ground black pepper, 26 g (2 tbsp) sesame oil
2 g (1 tsp) pine nuts powder
50 g lettuce
13 g (1 tbsp) edible oil

1. Clean blood of beef with cotton cloths, remove fats and tendons (500 g), cut into 5 cm-wide, 7 cm-long and 0.3~0.5 cm thick along with opposite direction of the texture. Chop them slightly and marinate in pear juice for 10 min.
2. Blend seasoning sauce.
3. Trim and wash lettuce under running water cleanly.
4. Remove tops of the pine nuts, wipe the pine nuts with dry cotton cloths, pound it finely to make pine nuts powder (2 g).

1. Add seasoning sauce to the beef, mix thoroughly until seasoning sauce permeated evenly into the beef. Let it sit for 30 min. (827 g).
2. Preheat the grill and oil. Put the beef piece by piece on it, and grill them for 3 min. for front side, and 2 min. for back side, at about 15 cm above the heat not to be burnt.
3. Sprinkle pine nuts powder and serve with lettuce.

*To cook good taste steamed rice, rice should be steamed to be pretty tender, neither too hard nor too soft or watery.
*Steaming in boiling water would produce deeper brown colour, better taste and sweet smell.
*Two hours may be proper for steaming in boiling water.
*For the sweet steamed rice sauce, caramel sauce may produces good colour and sweet smell.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

"The Rock Side Of Younee" at 100 CLUB

Date: Wednesday April 7th at 7.30
Venue: 100 CLUB, 100 Oxford Sreet, London W1
Tel: 020 - 7636 0933
Tickets: £10 Adv www.wegottickets.com
(08700 600 100 (24 hours))
This gig is kindly supported by Pizza Express.

Live & Direct from SeoulSouth Korean Singer Songwriter & Virtuoso PianistYOUNEE With ‘The Rock Side of Younee’

Tonight Younee the versatile & immensly talented South Korean singer, songwriter & virtuoso pianist who is in the middle of a tour which will be primarily Classical and Jazz lets herself loose on the music that has captivated her since her teens, namely Rock!

As a teenager the likes of The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Led Zepperlin, Steve Wonder and Queen and in this show she will be giving ther own unique twist to may of these rock classics as well as a nod to virtuoso classical and jazz piano playing along with some original tunes as well from her debut Western C.D 'True To You'.

Younee is a highly respected musician in Seoul with two albums out under the name Key's Piano and is fast establishing herself over here as a musician's musician!

Younee, from Seoul, Korea is 'beyond category' as a singer, songwriter and pianist. Her exquisitely vulnerable voice can also express raw power. An accomplished and virtuosic classical pianist, she plays rock as well as Rachmaninoff. She has performed piano concertos with symphony orchestras and jazz with Grammy-winning pianist Bob James. She is an award-winning singer/songwriter who has also written music for film and TV. She has released two albums in Korea as “Keys Piano” and performed extensively on Korean television.

When Bob James heard her music he invited her to perform with him in Seoul - his brilliant composition for piano 'four hands'. Knowing Younee wanted to break free of the creative restrictions of the Korean music business, James suggested she contact American producer/composer/arranger Richard Niles.

Younee and Niles began to write songs using Skype - Younee in her bedroom studio in Seoul and Niles in his studio in London. Together they have been able to integrate contrasting elements of popular music into a unified whole, balancing tradition with innovation - a dynamic and truly unique blend of genres. The resulting album ‘True to You’ has been described as “Imagine Elton John played by Herbie Hancock and sung by the Bangles!”

"Great songs, great singing & playing." - Bob James

"Younee is the real deal." - Gilad Altzmon

"Younee is certainly a talented young lady." - Richard Carpenter

" Yunee has a voice as sweet as it is passionate. Thoroughly enjoyable." - Liane Carrol

Canon adds 24 and 25fps HD Movie recording to the EOS 5D Mark II with Firmware 2.0.3

Canon pre-announces the release of a firmware update for the multiple award-winning EOS 5D Mark II. Originally announced in late 2009, the update adds 24 and 25 frames per second (fps) recording to the camera’s EOS MOVIE video function, and will be available as a free download from the middle of March.

Developed following feedback from photographers and cinematographers, Firmware 2.0.3 further enhances the EOS 5D Mark II’s excellent video performance. The addition of new frame rates expands the camera’s video potential, providing filmmakers with the ability to shoot 1080p Full HD footage at 24fps (actual 23.976fps) – the optimum frame rate for cinematic video. 25fps support at both 1920x1080 and 640x480 resolutions will allow users to film at the frame rate required for the PAL broadcast standard, while the new firmware will also change the 30fps option to the NTSC video standard of 29.97fps.
A new histogram display for shooting movies in manual exposure, shutter-priority (Tv) and aperture-priority (Av) have been added, and exposure modes will also be available in movie mode. Improved audio functionality will allow users to set sound record levels manually using a sound-level meter displayed on the LCD screen. The audio sampling frequency has also been increased from 44.1KHz to 48KHz, providing the optimum audio signal typically required for professional or broadcast material.
With its full frame CMOS sensor and compatibility with Canon’s wide range of premium lenses, the EOS 5D Mark II is already recognised for its outstanding HD video performance. Launched in September 2008, the camera immediately created a wide range of new possibilities for photographers and videographers, and the addition of new frame rates and manual audio levels extends those possibilities even further – allowing movie makers to shoot stunning movies to suit practically any creative purpose.
Extreme sports photographer Richard Walch was one of the first to be given the chance to use the newly updated EOS 5D Mark II to shoot the snowboarding movie “I Love My Friends”. Commenting on the EOS 5D Mark II’s video performance, Richard said: “The addition of the new frame rates opens up a whole new range of possibilities. If you’re a cinematographer, independent film maker or just enthusiastic about making your own movies, get out there and give it a try”.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

“Buddha Speaks with a New Voice: Who am I?”

Exhibition Dates: 10 April – 29 May 2010
VIP Private Viewing: Friday 9 April 2010 (6.30pm)
Venue: Korean Cultural Centre UK, 1-3 Strand, London, WC2N 5BW
Tel: 020 7004 2600
seungmin.kim@kccuk.org.uk ,

The Korean Cultural Centre UK in association with the Mok-A Buddhist Museum proudly announces the upcoming exhibition ‘Buddha Speaks with a New Voice: Who am I?’ at the Korean Cultural Centre UK.

This colourful exploration of traditional and contemporary Buddhist art features a selection of the Mok-A Buddhist Museum’s finest examples of traditional Buddhist Art along with contemporary examples by Important Intangible Cultural Asset No.108, Wood Sculpture Park Chan-soo.

Park Chan-soo has given his life and career to the preservation and creation of Buddhist sculpture. As a sculptor and teacher, Park Chan-soo leads classes to students from across the world, to ensure that his skills will be passed on to the next generation. Through his life’s work, Park-Chan-soo has sought the true meaning behind Buddha’s teachings. The results of this personal journey of reflection and contemplation can be seen in Park’s contemporary pieces where humility and a love for your fellow man shine through. Park’s life has therefore not just been about the continuation of his special skills, but also about attaining enlightenment: an enlightenment that is achieved by understanding oneself and spreading the teachings of Buddha. The title of the exhibition ‘Buddha Speaks with a New Voice: Who am I?’ reflects this enlightenment and the journey Park Chan-soo has taken to achieve it.

The Mok-A Buddhist Museum in Gyeonggi-do first opened in 1989 and in the two decades since has become Korea’s leading private museum of Buddhist art. Buddhist art and sculptures, many created by Park Chan-soo adorn the museum and its exquisite gardens. Set over four floors, with classrooms and a theatre, the Mok-A Buddhist Museum has artifacts dating back to the 12th Century.

To compliment ‘Buddha Speaks with a New Voice: Who am I?’ in April and May we have organised an extensive range of supplementary events, including a lecture with leading academics, a talk on temple stays, a children’s craft workshop and a film season inspired by the exhibition.

Please see below for further information on our forthcoming Events.
All events at the Korean Cultural Centre are free to enter but reserving a place is strongly advised.

Accompanying events:

1. Meeting the Artist! (Sat 10 April, 14.30 – 16.00)
- A Gallery Tour and Artist talk with Park Chan-soo, Important Intangible Cultural Heritage No. 108

2. Korean Buddhism Experience: ‘Temple Stays and Temple Food’ (Wed 14 April 12.00 – 14.00)
(Invitation Event for Journalists of Food and Tourism)

3. Korean Tea Ceremony (Fri 16 April 14.00 – 16.00)
- Discover the etiquette of the Korean Tea Ceremony, and how this traditional ritual offers a relaxing alternative to the momentum of modern life

4. Lecture ‘Tradition and Innovation of Korean Buddhist Sculpture’
- A lecture on Buddhist Sculpture with Professor Young-sook Park of SOAS (Wed 19 May 18.30 – 20.30)

5. Weekly Introduction to Buddhism
- Presentation on Korean Buddhism (every Saturday 11.30 – 16.30)

6. Gallery Craft Workshop for children
- Workshops run throughout April and May (Further Details see: http://www.kccuk.org.uk/ )

7. A Korean Film Season inspired by Buddhism
- Aje Aje Bara Aje, (Dir. Im Kwon-teak) (Thurs 8 April 19.00-21.00)
- The Avatamska Sutra. (Dir. Jang Sun-woo) (Thurs 22 April 19.00-21.00)

8. Gallery Craft Workshop with the Korean Language Class of the Coventry School (Sat 17 April 11.00 – 12.30)
- Students will participate in a craft workshop and gallery tour (By Invitation Only)

To reserve your place on the above events please R.S.V.P to info@kccuk.org.uk, clearly stating your name, telephone number and which event you would like to attend.

Asiana Installs First Class for its Frankfurt Route

Asiana Airlines (President & CEO: Young-Doo Yoon), in an effort to boost up competition on the Incheon ~ Frankfurt route, will be operating a B777-200ER with First Class installed starting from the 1st of April.

Asiana, acknowledging that the Frankfurt route’s yearly boarding rate consist of 75~80% all businessman, have decided to provide the best of services to the upper-class passengers by adding a first class to its existing 2 classes (Business/Travel).

8 additional first class seats will be installed on the existing B777-200ER and daily operations will begin starting from the 1st of April between the Incheon ~ Frankfurt route.

Asiana’s First Class consists of a 180。 declining bed seat that has an 83 inch leg space between seats, top of the end in wines and catering. By providing the finest cabin environment towards the passengers, Asiana aims to strengthen its competition for its Frankfurt route which is one of representing European routes for Asiana.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Bruch Violin Concerto with So-Ock Kim

Conductor: Nicolae Moldoveanu
Violin: So-Ock Kim
Date & Time: 7:30pm, Wed 31th March, 2010
Venue: Fairfield, Croydon
Ticket Prices: £10, £16, £20, £23.50, £26.50, £29.50
Booking Info:
Box Office: 020 8688 9291

Mussorgky: Night on the Bare Mountain
Bruch: Violin Concerto No.1

Bruch's hugely popular Concerto is an evergreen of vitality and melody, demanding super-human agility from its soloist, which makes it the ideal showpiece for the extraordinarily talented So-Ock Kim.
Night on the Bare Mountain and Scheherazade go hand-in-hand as two pieces that illustrate the incredible power of music to add colour and dimension to a story - from the lurid melodrama of Mussorgsky's witches Sabbath to Rimsky-Korsakov's luscious re-telling of exotic tales from The Arabian Nights.

Asiana Starts Services to Ibaraki

Asiana Airlines (President & CEO: Young-Doo Yoon) will inaugurate flights to Ibaraki, Japan starting March 11. Asiana will operate an Airbus A320 (141 seater) for daily services departing from Incheon International Airport at 10:00AM (Korean Time) and arriving at 12:00PM in Ibaraki (Local Time). Services from Ibaraki will start from 1:00PM (Local Time) and arrive in Incheon at 3:20PM (Korean Time).

Ibaraki is referred to as a paradise of flowers in Japan. It is home to some of Japan’s most famous gardens like Kairakuen and Fukuroda Falls. Ibaraki also has many springs, golf courses and shopping outlets where travelers can experience something different while traveling in Tokyo.
The newly opened Ibaraki Airport is an hour and thirty minutes drive from central Tokyo, which is a similar distance from central Tokyo to Narita International Airport. However, because of Ibaraki Airport’s smaller size, time from check-in counters to the departure gates is expected to be less than at Narita. On average it is projected that using Ibaraki Airport will save passengers from thirty minutes to an hour on their trip.

Asiana Airlines will hold an inaugural event on March 11 starting from 9:30AM at the 3rd floor departure gates in Incheon International Airport prior to the inaugural Incheon-Ibaraki flight. Asiana Airlines President & CEO Young-Doo Yoon, Seoul Regional Aviation Administration’s Commissioner Young-Chang Ryu, Incheon International Airport Vice-President Young-Keun Lee and other airline industry related officials are to be present.
With the inauguration of the Ibaraki route, Asiana will operate to 17 cities, 24 routes and 176 weekly flights from Korea to Japan making Asiana the largest foreign airliner to operate to Japan. It is anticipated that human/material exchanges between the two countries will continue to increase in the coming years.

Friday, 12 March 2010

‘Dual use’ PC headset that doubles as a high-quality headphone

Now you can listen – and be heard – even more clearly with a choice of comfortable, colourful new PC headsets from Sony.

A stylish alternative to flimsy, drab-looking headsets, the DR-350USB and DR‑320DPV are the perfect add-on for your netbook, notebook or desktop PC.

Offering sparkling hi-fi audio, they’re ideal for chatting with friends around the world over VoIP, taking command in multi-player games… or just relaxing while listening to your favourite sounds. Blending smart looks and crystal-clear sound, both headsets are also ideal for listening to music and podcasts on your PC or laptop.

The DR-350USB and DR-320DPV feature a high quality omnidirectional microphone module that’s embedded discreetly in the headset.

As an extra refinement, the supplied voice tube routes speech directly from mouth to mic, reducing background noise when you’re chatting to friends and family or fellow gamers. The tube removes effortlessly when it’s not needed, transforming the headset into a stylish headphone for your notebook or desktop PC.

Both new headset models are designed with maximum comfort firmly in mind. The light, low-pressure adjustable head band and foam earpads assure effortless listening while you’re immersed in the longest gaming or chat sessions. As an extra personal touch, the DR-320DPV is available in red or black to co‑ordinate with your VAIO PC.

Sound quality from the precision 30mm ferrite driver is crisp and clear, whether you’re staying in touch with relatives overseas or just enjoying your digital music collection.

Ideal for connection to your laptop or PC, the 2.5m cord of the DR-320DPV includes an in-line volume control. It’s a simple way to make quick level adjustments without reaching over to your PC’s keyboard. When you’re listening to music on headphones and don’t need to speak, the mic jack stows neatly into a handy plug rest to cut the clutter of dangling wires.

For extra convenience, the DR-350USB features a USB adaptor module with integral volume and mute controls. As well as assuring super-clean direct digital connection, it’s a handy way to free up your computer’s jack socket for plugging in PC speakers.

Also available, the new DR-310DP is a super-light PC headset with discreetly concealed in-line microphone. Offered in a choice of fresh green, white, pink and blue colour variations, it’s ideal for chatting over VoIP, gaming or listening to your favourite sounds. The high-quality headset features a slim, comfort-wear headband and cushioned earpads.

The new DR-350USB, DR-320DPV and DR-310DP PC headsets by Sony are available from April 2010.

Jazz Vocalist Youn Sun Nah performs in Queen Elizabeth Hall, South Bank Centre

* Performers : Dan Berglund's Tonbruket / Youn Sun Nah & Ulf Wakenius
* Date & Time : 7:30pm, Mon 15th March, 2010
* Venue : Queen Elizabeth Hall, South Bank Centre
* Booking Info :
Southbank Centre

About Youn Sun Nah
The daughter of a conductor father and a classical singer mother, Youn Sun Nah was born into and grew up a musical family in South Korea. She made her musical debut at 23 with a joint concert with the Korean Symphony Orchestra. In 1995 she moved to Paris to study jazz and French chanson at the CIM school and at the National Music Institute of Beauvais, and at the Nadia and Lili Boulanger Conservatory.
Producing five albums in six years, she held numerous performances in France, Europe, and in Asia including Korea. Such vigorous activity would earn her the best artist prize in crossover music category in Korea in 2003. In 2004, the release of was widely celebrated by French audiences as well as the press, who regarded her as one of the most remarkable singers of this generation.
Active touring and active musical performances finally came to fruition in the form of the Grand Prize at the reputable Jazz a Juan Concours in 2005, in addition to a prize of the best young artist of the year in Korea. She is an artist who never fails to move audiences wherever she may be performing, which led her to over 100 successful performances in Europe, USA, Australia, and Asia in 2005 and 2006.
Youn Sun Nah reestablished her position as a premier jazz artist in the Asian music scene and marketplace with the album , co-produced with Denmark`s top pianist Niels Lan Doky and Korean bassist Kim Jeong-ryul. She also earned recognition from the American media and noted personalities from around the world with an invitation and performance at the Jazz at Lincoln Center, which would launch her to world stardom.

About the Performance
South Korean rising star will support Dan Berglund´s TONBRUKET on their show at the QEH in London on March 15, 2010.
A duo of Youn Sun Nah (vocals) and Ulf Wakenius (guitar) will support e.s.t.´s former bassist Dan Berglund on his premier London show with his new outfit TONBRUKET.
Ulf Wakenius is best known for his collaboration with Oscar Peterson, which lasted for over 10 years, and saw him play at all major jazz festival as well as the most famous venues in the world. Recently Wakenius recorded two albums for the label ACT, one performing the music of Keith Jarrett, the other performing the music of e.s.t. (Esbjörn Svensson Trio) titled “Love is Real”.
Youn Sun Nah on the other side is a superstar in South Korea and has in the meantime achieved rising star status in Europe through her debut album release “Voyage” (ACT) and intensive touring in 2009. She is nominated for the BMW World Jazz Award, which will be given in April, and has won numerous other awards in the past (e.g. “Rising Star of the festival Antibes-Juan Les Pins”). She is probably the strongest singer/songwriter to arrive on the scene in recent years. “Voyage” has been recorded in Gothenburg with an all-Scandinavian line-up.
Dan Berglund´s TONBRUKET is a true supergroup with Martin Hederos (also member of “Soundtracks of our Lives”) on piano, Johan Lindström (“Per Texas Johansson”) on guitar and Andreas Werliin (“Wildbirds & Peacedrums”) on drums. Their debut album “TONBRUKET” (ACT) went straight to number 15 of the Swedish Pop Charts and keeps selling big time. Berglund has always been the rock’n’roller in e.s.t. and his new group emphasizes that approach. He references Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Wilco, Black Sabbath, but of course also e.s.t. (“Song for E”).

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Discover Korean Food #24: Dr. Sook-Ja Yoon's "Juksoonchae Hongsi Sauce Muchim"

Juksoonchae Hongsi Sauce Muchim is a seasoned dish mixed with Bamboo Sprout, vegetable and meat in ripe Persimmon sauce.
Persimmon has a bitter taste.
According to traditional Korean Medicine Persimmon helps stop coughing and reduces body temperature.
Therefore, it prevents chronic bronchitis and influenza between seasons.
It also oxidizes alcohol quickly and is good for relieving hangovers.

* 1 can of Bamboo Sprouts 30g, Dropwort 20g, Bean Sprouts 40g, 3 Eggs, 3 Dates
* Beef 40g, Shiitake 10g, Soy Sauce ½ tbsp, Sugar ¼ tbsp, Chopped Spring Onion ½ tsp, minced Garlic ¼ tsp, Ground Sesame Mixed with Salt ¼ tsp, Black Pepper 1/8 tsp, Sesame Oil ½ tsp
* Ripe Persimmon Sauce: Drained Ripe Persimmon 40g, Persimmon Vinegar 2 tbsp (12g), Sugar ½ tbsp, Honey ½ tbsp, Salt ¼ tsp, Lemon Juice 1tbsp

1. Wash Bean sprouts after removing the heads and the tails. Put into boiling salted water and blanche them.
2. Remove the leaves of the Dropworts and trim the stalks. Wash them. Put into the boiled salted water and blanche them. Rinse in the cold water. Cut into 3cm lengths.
3. Wash the beef removing excess blood. Chop into 0.5cm widths and depths and 5cm lengths. Marinate and fry.
4. Soak the Shiitake in medium lukewarm water for an hour. Remove the tops. Chop into 0.5cm widths and depths and 5cm lengths. Marinate and then fry in vegetable oil.
5. Wash the Bamboo Sprouts and chop into 0.5cm widths and depths and 5 cm lengths thereby maintaining its pattern of the sprouts.
6. Separate the whites and yolks of the eggs then fry each in turn. Slice them into 0.3 cm widths and 4cm lengths.
7. Wipe the dates with cotton. Peel them, remove the seeds and cut them into 0.3cm widths.
8. Prepare the Ripe Persimmon sauce
9. Mix the ingredients with the Ripe Persimmon sauce.

Daytime Drinking: The 39th Korean Film Night at The Korean Cultural Centre UK

Film title: Daytime Drinking, 116mins
Director: Noh Young-seok
Cast: Song Sam-dong
Genre: Drama / Comedy
Venue: Multi-purpose Hall, The Korean Cultural Centre, Grand Buildings, The Strand, London WC2N 5BW
Time: Thursday, 11th March, 7:00pm

Before this film screening, guests will be invited to enjoy Soju Korean vodka tasting and light snacks.

Hyuk-Jin has just broken up with his girlfriend and decides to take a trip to Jeongseon in the province of Gangwon-do. The next day, his friends are too hung over to get up, so Hyuk-Jin makes his way to his destination alone. A trip of opportunity takes a cruel and unexpected turn as misunderstanding and crossed paths occur over and over again.
"Daytime Drinking" is proof that a good script and simpatico direction and performances can overcome budgetary restrictions. An ultra-Korean tale, anchored by the social courtesies of soju consumption, is a mildly black comedy of escalating misadventures that should speak to audiences worldwide.
Some of the movie's humour trades on the niceties of South Korea's drinking culture (which, unlike in the West, always involves food as well) and of accepting beverages out of politeness. But the film is never about drinking itself, or its pernicious side effects.
The script's humour reflects the grim, gray wintery locations, and has much fun with the locals' gruff social attitudes - way different from those in Seoul, which seems light years away.
Source: http://www.variety.com/

Booking is required, please RSVP to info@kccuk.org.uk or call 020 7004 2600
Admission is free.

Monday, 8 March 2010

Piccadilly Revisited: A performance celebrating the life of Anna May Wong

Date: 7.45pm, Tuesday 30th March and Wednesday 31st March 2010
Venue: Linbury Theatre, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 9DD
Tickets: £12, £10, standing £5, concessions incl. students and ROH Access Scheme £8 from Royal Opera House
Box Office: on 020 7304 4000 or at http://www.roh.org.uk/ available from 9th February 2010
Presented by: Chinatown Arts Space
Supported by: (Ace grants for the arts)

Piccadilly Revisited is a film and video, dance, music and drama performance inspired by the life and loves of Hollywood's first Chinese film star, Anna May Wong, and the classic British silent movie Piccadilly (1929) in which she played a starring role.
The film will be shown in full as a backdrop to the performance.
Piccadilly Revisited features dancers Yuyu Rau and Quang Van, and Calita Rainford playing Anna May Wong.
Written by David Tse Ka-Shing and Alice LeeMusic composed and performed by Suki Mok and Ruth ChanChoreography by Sin-Man Yue and Anh NguyenShort film sequences by Shan Ng and O ZhangWong was a celebrated actress who worked with Dietrich and Olivier, graced the pages of Vogue, Tatler and Vanity Fair, and the song These Foolish Things was written for her. Chinatown Arts Space is delighted to celebrate her achievements in this, her seminal film directed by E.A. Dupont.

'Bold, beautifully crafted...one of the truly great films of the silent era’ - Martin Scorsese

Sejong City to become nat'l center for education and science

The new city of Sejong to be constructed in Yeongi-gun (county), South Chungcheong Province, will become the center for national educational and scientific development, according to the government's plan announced early January.

The city was named after King Sejong the Great of the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) who created Hangeul (Korean alphabet) and led the dynasty's scientific and technological advances during his reign.

The initial plan for the city development was drafted during the previous administration (2003-2008) and aimed at creating a multifunctional administrative city in the Chungcheong area.

But the new plan revealed in January aims to make it an economic hub for science and education in the region: Sejong City will be reshaped into a center of industries, universities and research institutions that are conducive to creating jobs and wealth.

The future-oriented city, to accommodate around 500,000 people, is known to have benchmarked the science research districts of Dresden (Germany), Research Triangle Park (United States) and CERN (Switzerland).

In Sejong City will be built an ion beam facility, a basic science research center, a fusion technology center and an international science graduate school. All these facilities will be linked to a new scientific complex (provisionally named the Sejong International Science Institute), which will come to match the renown of Japan's Riken Institute and Germany's Max Planck Institutes.

Five major conglomerates -- Samsung, Hanwha, Woongjin, Lotte and Austria's SSF -- have pledged to invest in the new city's development in the fields of renewable energy, solar energy, light-emitting diodes (LED) and many other eco-friendly businesses.

On the academic front, Korea University and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) have signed on to build campuses in the city.

The government expects the new city project will create about 250,000 new jobs.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Manga Jiman Exhibition

Date: 15th February - 31st March 2010
Venu: The Embassy of Japan in the UK, 101 - 104 Piccadilly, London W1J 7JT
Tel: 020 7465 6589
Email: manga@jpembassy.org.uk
Web: http://www.uk.emb-japan.go.jp/
Organiser: The Embassy of Japan in the UK
Open weekdays 09:30 - 17:30, closed weekends Admission is free, but photo ID is necessary to gain entry to the Embassy.

The Embassy of Japan first launched ‘Manga Jiman’, a manga-writing competition open to UK residents, with great success in 2007.
The competition has grown rapidly since and is now in its third year.
Entrants aged fourteen or over, were required to make some reference to the ‘sun’ within six to eight pages of original manga.
View the winning entries from the 2009 competition in this exhibition.

Asiana Certified as ‘5 Star Airline’ for 4 Consecutive Years

Asiana Airlines (President: Young-Doo, Yoon) has been certified as a ‘5 Star Airline’ for 4 consecutive years from the world-renowned airline research organization ‘Skytrax.’

Asiana Airlines President & CEO Young-Doo, Yoon received the ‘5 Star Airline’ certificate from Edward Plaisted(Chairman of Skytrax) on the 25th of February, 9am at Gangseo-Gu, Osae-Dong head quarters of Asiana Airlines.

The definition of ‘5 Star Airline’ according to Skytrax, means an airline that is innovative and leading in the area of services that other airlines benchmark. Asiana was first certified in May of 2007 and continuously for 4 years have been chosen as the ‘5 Star Airline’ positioning Asiana both nominally and virtually the world’s best service providing airliner.

The World Airline Star Ranking, reaching it’s 11th year, is conducted every year. Assessments are measured from a lowest score of 1-star to a highest score of 5-star. This ranking system is considered to be the most authoritative quality-ranking system in the airline industry.

The World Airline Star Ranking ranks 800 categories of airlines for its quality in airport and cabin services. In order to keep a fair service assessment, the judging committee members secretly boards airlines and make evaluation of the services. The ‘5- Star Airline’ group is only composed of 6 members worldwide: Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways, Qatar Airways, Malaysia Airlines, Kingfisher and Asiana Airlines.

Skytrax, renowned for its World Airline Star Rating Programme, established in 1989 in England, has conducted product and service quality analysis for the world airlines with a unique format for assessing and quantifying quality standards for over 18 years.

Meanwhile, Asiana Airlines and Amadeus, world leading airline IT(Information Technology) servicing corporation, signed a MOU to commence the evaluation and scoping of the potential implementation of the Amadeus Altea Customer Management System(CMS).

Both companies agreed upon to implement the newly adopted system from 2011 and to provide services starting in 2014 for domestic market.

The ‘Altea’ solution that Asiana is adopting, manages all reservation, inventory and departure control processes for Asiana, delivering a fully integrated Customer Management System. As an existing member airline of the Star Alliance, which has selected Altéa as its Common Information Technology Platform (CITP), Asiana will also be able to more seamlessly codeshare and partner with other 155 alliance member airlines.

Asiana Airlines have been self-managing the ARTIS-Ⅱ, adopted from British Airways in 1995. But by adopting the Altéa Reservation system, Asiana will be assured of a seamless reservation service across all sales channels through the unique sharing of reservation services between Asiana and travel agencies. Altéa Inventory streamlines Asiana’s flight schedule management and allows for the timely introduction of new products. Altéa Departure Control has been designed to automate all airport processes, from check-in to disruption.

Kwang Hee Ryu, Executive Vice President, Asiana Airlines Commercial Passenger said, “Asiana prides itself in providing the highest levels of customer service during the travel experience, from booking and check-in, through to our in-flight and post-flight services. As a Star Alliance member, adopting the complete Altéa solution is a logical decision to guarantee we maintain our competitive edge while also having a positive impact on our bottom line. The automation of inventory control, check-in and departure will allow us to deploy our resources in more value-added areas.”

The Amadeus IT Group’s HQ is located in Madrid, Spain and has a strong history of providing the finest IT services in the global airline sector. Last year’s sales were 24 hundred million Euros. Amadeus covers over 30% of the global passengers and have been transporting 6.7 hundred million passengers globally. 12 Star Alliance member carriers including Lufthansa and Singapore and other 155 airliners are currently supplied with the Altea system.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

‘The Gift from Beate’ Film Screening & Panel Discussion

Date: 09/03/2010, 6.30pm
Venue: Khalili Lecture Theatre (KLT), SOAS
Organiser: SOAS Centre for Gender Studies and Japan Research Centre in association with the London branch, Tsuda College Alumni

Beate Sirota Gordon was 22 years old in February 1946 when as one of 25 members of the Government Section of GHQ she drafted Article 24 of the postwar Japanese Constitution, establishing a basis for the equality of the sexes in Japan.
The film, directed by Tomoko Fujiwara, uses Ms Sirota Gordon’s experience in drafting this article as the starting-point for an exploration of how women have lived and improved their social status during the 60 years since World War II.
The film is narrated in English, with English sub-titles of some interviews.
Following the screening of the film there will be a panel discussion including Ms Sirota Gordon.

Discover Japanese Food #12: Sanshoku Soboro Bento (THE EAST Campaign in Association with Atsuko’s Kitchen)

Bento boxes are served everywhere in Japan - work places, schools, department stores, and even on the trains. These tasty Japanese lunch boxes have been enjoyed for over 800 years!There are many styles of bento boxes. For example, “shokado bento” is a large lacquered bento box which normally has 4 compartments. Each space contains rice, sashimi, tempura, nimono (stewed dish), and pickled vegetables. The most common style of home made bento contains rice with umeboshi (salted plum), tamago yaki (egg roll), kara age (fried chicken), and potato salad (Japanese style), amongst others. The dishes used should be very well balanced, such as rice, as a main dish, then protein from meat, fish, or egg, minerals from seaweeds, and vitamins from vegetables. Anyone can make their own bento. It is very common for people to make or pack their own bento in the morning for school, office, or picnics! This recipe is called “Sanshoku soboro bento”, which means three colours ingredients. Very ordinary ingredients are placed in top of the rice, but there is a unique method to make fine flakes of meat and egg, which can also be used as a topping for salads, tofu and rice.

Ingredients (for 2 bento boxes)
2 cups of Japanese rice (cooked)
8 mange tout
4 sliced carrot (for garnish)
2 sliced takenoko (bamboo shoot)
1 tsp sunflower oil
A pinch of salt
For pork soboro:
200g minced pork
3 cm ginger (finely chopped)
2 tbsp sake
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp red miso2 tbsp shoyu
For egg soboro:
2 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp mirin

1. To make the pork soboro, heat a medium size sauce pan, fry the minced pork without oil, stir using 4 chopsticks to make fine flakes until it browns.
2. Add ginger, sake, and sugar to the sauce pan then stir constantly.
3. Add red miso and shoyu, and keep on stirring until the liquid has evaporated. It will burn quickly when you stop stirring so don’t stop it until it becomes dry and forms fine flakes! You can keep the pork soboro in a clean jar in the refrigerator for up to one week.
4. To make the egg soboro, mix the eggs, salt and mirin in a small sauce pan.
5. Heat the sauce pan to medium, stir constantly using 4 chopsticks until it becomes finely scrambled.
6. Bring the water to the boil, cook mange tout and sliced carrot for few mins then wash in cold water to preserve the colour.
7. Slice the mange tout diagonally.
8. Fry the sliced takenoko to brown both sides, sprinkle with a little salt.

For the final stage, you will choose the right size of your bento box which will be suitable for soboro bento.
You put the cooked rice at the bottom of your bento box to make a bed of rice which will be at 80% of the height of the box. Then cover the rice with 3 colourful toppings. For soboro bento, the best type of box is low in height and has a sealed lid.

* A tip for eating - mix the toppings with the rice underneath, then eat with a spoon, to make it easier.
** The next “Bento workshop” will be held on the 21st March.

The East News