Promotional poster for Beethoven Virus
|Written by||Hong Jin-ah
|Directed by||Lee Jae-gyu|
|Country of origin||South Korea|
|No. of episodes||18|
|Executive producer(s)||Oh Kyung-hoon|
|Running time||Wednesdays and Thursdays at 21:55 (KST)|
|Production company(s)||Kim Jong-hak Production|
|Original channel||Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation|
|Original run||11 September 2008– 12 November 2008|
|Preceded by||Lawyers of the Great Republic of Korea|
|Followed by||General Hospital 2|
|Revised Romanization||Betoben Ba-ireoseu|
Beethoven Virus (Hangul: 베토벤 바이러스) is a 2008 South Korean television series starring Kim Myung-min, Lee Ji-ah, and Jang Keun-suk. The show drew attention for being the first Korean drama to depict the lives of classical musicians, an orchestra and ordinary people who dream of becoming musicians. It aired on MBC from September 10 to November 12, 2008 on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 21:55 for 18 episodes.
Kang Gun-woo (or Kang Mae) is a world-renowned orchestra maestro who is a perfectionist in his work. He is not an easy person to work with and is feared by all his players. By chance, he comes across Du Ru-mi, a violinist, and a young cop who has the same name as his and discovers that even without formal training, the young Kang is a music genius. The three soon get tangled in a love triangle as Kang Mae attempts to salvage a local orchestra.
Cast and characters
- Kim Myung-min as Kang Gun-woo/Kang Mae (Conductor)
- Kang Gun-woo is an orchestra conductor who is a single forty-year-old man that lives with a dog named Toven (named after Beethoven). He is very talented and famous for his excellent skills in music. Conductor Kang feels that classical music is for the nobility and to play the noble classics, the talent of players should be brilliant. Because he believes in this, he insults many musicians who do not match his perfection. However, he has shown jealousy and hatred in the past for those who are naturally talented, or those who are prodigies in music, such as Maestro Jung. He also has shown that he hated the trumpet player Kang Gun-woo for being a genius in the beginning of the drama.
- Kang Mae is notorious for his aggressiveness and sharp tongue. His nickname is "orchestra killer." His personality is mostly written in his face when he encounters trouble and he smirks to show he isn't weak. The reason that he has spent most of his time overseas is because he had once refused to perform in front of a large audience, which included the president.
- Lee Ji-ah as Du Ru-mi (Violin)
- Du Ru-mi is the concert mistress of the project orchestra. Despite her delicate appearance, she is actually hot-tempered, moody, and optimistic about everything. Her headaches and tinnitus are the symptoms of a tumor that is impinging on her cochlear nerve, an acoustic neuroma, perhaps, which will eventually cause complete hearing loss. Now, she has a resolute goal to continue to play the violin and continue to perform on stage until she loses her hearing completely.
- Jang Keun-suk as Kang Gun-woo (Trumpet)
- Kang Gun-woo is a traffic officer with a strong sense of justice. To help a pregnant woman get to the hospital, he moves a car by crashing it into another car, which causes him to be suspended from his position. Even though he cannot read music, he has a natural talent for playing the trumpet and for music itself. The project orchestra that he joins through Ru-mi’s recommendation gives him an opportunity to open his eyes and ears to music and conducting.
- Lee Soon-jae as Kim Gab-yong (Oboe)
- Juni as Ha Yi-deun (Flute)
- Song Ok-sook as Jung Hee-yun (Cello)
- Park Chul-min as Bae Yong-gi (Trumpet)
- Jung Suk-yong as Park Hyuk-kwon (Double Bass)
- Lee Bong-gyu as Park Jin-man
- Kim Young-min as Jung Myung-hwan
- Jo Se-eun as Kim Joo-yeon
- Park Eun-joo as Kim Joo-hee
- Lee Han-wi as Kang Chun-bae
- Park Kil-soo as Kim Kye-jang
- Hwang Young-hee as Hyuk-kwon's wife
- Baek Jae-jin as refugees' leader (ep 10)
- Kim Ik as doctor (ep 10)
At the drama's press conference prior to airing, Kim Myung-min, who plays the talented yet difficult maestro Kang, actually conducted Ennio Morricone's Gabriel's Oboe, and Johannes Brahms' Hungarian Dances with a full orchestra in front of reporters and fans who came to the venue. Kang is based on real-life conductor Shin-ik Hahm.
- 2008 45th Baeksang Arts Awards
- Best TV Actor: Kim Myung-min
- 2008 Grimae Awards
- Special Award: Song In-hyuk and Hong Sung-wook
- 2008 The National Assembly Society of Popular Culture & Media Awards
- Most Popular Drama in 2008
- 2008 9th Broadcaster Awards
- Best Performance in Broadcasting: Kim Myung-min
- 2008 3rd Korea Drama Festival
- Grand Prize/Daesang: Kim Myung-min
- 2008 21st Korean Producers' Awards
- Best TV Drama
- 2008 MBC Drama Awards
- Grand Prize/Daesang: Kim Myung-min
- Drama of the Year
- Best New Actor: Jang Keun-suk
- Special PD Award: Lee Jae-gyu
- Golden Acting Award, Supporting Actor: Park Chul-min
- Golden Acting Award, Veteran Actor: Song Ok-sook
- Writer/s of the Year: Hong Jin-ah and Hong Ja-ram
- 2009 36th Korean Broadcasting Association Awards
- Best Actor: Kim Myung-min
- Runner-up, Best Miniseries
- 2009 International Drama Festival in Tokyo
- Special Award for Foreign Programs
- Chung, Ah-young (1 January 2009). "Beethoven Virus Still Goes On". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- Kwon, Mee-yoo (19 February 2009). "Beethoven Virus Fails to Spread". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- Han, Sang-hee (9 September 2008). "Dramas Bring Hero, Gamblers and Orchestra". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- Han, Jane (7 March 2010). "Maestro Hahm Shin-ik's Humble Journey to Fame". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- "Musicians to make cameo appearance". The Korea Herald via Naver. 22 August 2008. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- Chung, Ah-young (2 November 2008). "Actor Kim Wins Top Prize at Korea Drama Festival Awards". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- "MBC Should Be Ashamed of Farcical Awards". The Chosun Ilbo. 2 January 2009. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- Han, Sang-hee (13 September 2009). "Seoul Int’l Drama Awards End With Promise". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- "Beethoven Virus Wins Japan Award". The Korea Times. 20 October 2009. Retrieved 2013-04-02.
- "Beethoven Virus comes to Fuji TV Japan in February!". MyungMin International. 20 January 2011. Retrieved 2013-08-20.