Pansori performance at the Busan Cultural Center in Busan South Korea
Pansori (Korean: 판소리, also spelled p'ansori) is a genre of Korean traditional music. It is a vocal and percussional music performed by one sorikkun (Korean: 소리꾼, a singer) and one gosu (a drummer playing a barrel drum called buk Korean: 북). The term pansori is derived from pan (Korean: 판, meaning "a place where many people gather"), and sori (Korean: 소리, meaning "sound").
While it is difficult to pinpoint the exact date of the origin, it is commonly believed to have evolved during the mid-Joseon period. A popular form in Korea during the 19th century, pansori featured satires and love stories. A full story, madang (Korean: 마당), is so long that it usually takes hours to complete. One example is the "Song of Chunhyang" which takes over eight hours to perform, without a break. A madang consists of certain alterations of aniris (Korean: 아니리, descriptive speech) and changs (Korean: 창, song).
In a pansori performance, the kwangdae sings, standing with a folding fan held in one hand. The fan is waved to emphasize the singer's motions and unfolded to announce changes of scene. The gosu gives rhythm not only by beats but also by chuimsae (Korean: 추임새), verbal sounds. A chuimsae can be a simple meaningless vowel, but short words of encouragement are also given. The audience is also supposed to give chuimsae during the performance, similar to kakegoe and the shouts of "Olé" during flamenco performances.
Pansori has been compared in impact to the American Blues. There are various singing styles, such as the more "feminine" sopyonje of south-western Korea (inspiration of the film Sopyonje Korean: 서편제) and the more "masculine" tongp'yonje Korean: 동편제.
UNESCO proclaimed the pansori tradition a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity on November 7, 2003.
Famous pansori singers 
- Kim So-hee
- Song Man-gap
- Ahn Suk-seon, one of the more important educators in this field.
- Im Bang-ul
- Pak Tongjin
See also 
- Sopyonje — A critically acclaimed film that was a surprise box-office hit in Korea, telling the story of a family of pansori singers.
- Culture of Korea
- Korean music
- List of Korea-related topics
- Los Angeles Magazine Dec 2000
- "'Sopyonje'". OhmyNews. 2006-03-24.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Pansori|
- Pansori song
- Two Brothers by Grace Andreacchi is a version of the pansori tale 'Heungbu and Nolbu' for English spoken drama.