Buckcheong Saza Noleum is a lion mask folk play played in Bukcheong Region of Hamgyeong-namdo,
province currently in North Korean territory.
It has been designated as No.15 of national intangible asset since 1967 and inherited and
played very actively with more than 1,500 years history.
It is considered as one of the best among this kind of folk plays due to it’s powerful dancing movement,
and it is played in a wish for the peace of each household and the whole village by driving out all kinds of bad evil spirits in everywhere
in the region of Buckcheong-gun of Hamgyeong-namdo especially during moon festival of January(Jeongwol Daeboreum).
Villagers played Saza Noleum with lion mask dancing in the light of torch,
building up the fire in the open air in welcoming the rising full moon.
They often hold a contests to select the best team among villages in that region on the open ground,
and also they visited every house holds by ringing the small bell loudly to expel the evil ghosts in a wish to pray for the peace and
comfort of each family and the whole village as a Daedong Nori, a grand alliance of all villagers.
They collect some grain when they visit the house hold and it is used for the benefit of whole society resulting to
achieve mutual alliance and cooperation among villagers.
Legend had said that if one let child on the back of masked lion, it would bring the fortune with no illness for his family,
and if someone would keep the hair of lion would enjoy long life.
The Characteristics of Buckchung Saza Noleum
lion mask play is firmly settled as drama type folk play having sufficient contents playing with
over instrumental music inherited from Three Kingdom Periods.
The characteristics of this folk play is the music band consisting of the instruments making the unique sound of northern part of
Korea like two six holed bamboo fulutes.
In Buckcheong Saza Noleum, lion dance is the main and centered dance but is followed by
several different types of dances like appealing dance, little abnormal attitude type of dance, boy dance,
a comic dance with a pillow on one’s back, sword dance, etc. as a kind of overture.
Six hole bamboo flutes are the main musical instruments in lion dance
making very joyous and cheerful sounds, and the impromptu narrative speech during the play is matching and reflecting the emotion and
feeling of the audiences on the spot.