SEOUL – The North Korean orchestra group Samjiyon departed on Monday from South Korea after two historic concerts there as part of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.
The orchestra, comprising 140 members and set up especially to perform in the South, crossed the Demilitarized Zone separating the two Koreas by land at around 11:30 am, Yonhap News agency reported.
The orchestra, led by Hyon Song-Wol, also a member of popular North Korean women’s music group Moranbong, performed on Thursday in the city of Gangneung and at the National Theater of Korea in Seoul on Sunday.
These were the first performances by North Korean artists in the South since 2002 and were held at a time of considerable rapprochement between the two nations on the occasion of the Winter Olympics held in South Korean territory.
The concert in Seoul was attended by Kim Yo-jong, sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and the North’s honorary president, Kim Yong-nam, who officially headed the high-level delegation sent by Pyongyang for the Games.
Both North Korean representatives were seated next to South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who held a meeting with them Saturday and was also invited to attend a summit in Pyongyang with Kim Jong-un.
In front of a packed theatre Samjiyon played the song “Our desire is unification” together with Seohyun, singer of South Korean female pop group Girls’ Generation.