Park watches musical on second 'culture day'

SEOUL, Feb. 26 (Yonhap) -- President Park Geun-hye watched a musical at a theater Wednesday as part of her ongoing efforts to encourage cultural activity in everyday life.

Park watched the Korean-made musical "Finding Mr. Destiny" in Seoul's theater hub of Daehangno in the company of about 220 college freshmen, artists and government officials, including Culture Minister Yoo Jin-ryong.

"When we think about culture, it might sound a bit distant, but I feel it's actually very close to our lives, breathing with us," Park said before the start of the show.

"I myself went through a very difficult period a long time ago, but I was able to overcome those times through culture and gained new energy, hope and strength."

The musical, a romantic comedy about a young woman on a mission to track down her first love, has won numerous awards and drawn an audience of more than 600,000 in its 3,500 performances since 2006. It has been exported to China and Japan and also adapted into a movie and a novel.

Park's visit to the theater marked the second "culture day" of the year, which was launched last month as part of the government's efforts to provide the public with easier access to cultural events and sites.

On the last Wednesday of each month, admission to palaces is free, and discounts are offered for movies, cultural performances and museum admissions.

The project was designed to open an era of "cultural enrichment," one of the four overarching goals of the Park administration along with peace and economic growth.

In January, Park watched the Korean-made animation film "The Nut Job" at a local cinema. Since then, the number of facilities taking part in the project has grown from 883 to 1,108, according to the presidential office.

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