Article written by: Yananranop Promsuk
ASEAN-Korea blog correspondent, Thailand
Korean wave or Hallyu is currently become well known for all the areas around the world. The wave makes people keep their eyes on Korea, the small country but rich in culture in the Korean peninsula. Hallyu strongly reflects the way of life of the people in Korea, with the colourful clothes and architecture, the unique culture which is rich in Confucianism, and the fascinating entertainment such as drama, food and music. Thailand is one of the countries that are paying attention and passionate in the booming of the Korean wave. Most of the things from Korea will get attention from the big amount of Thai people.
One of the most popular Korea wave in Thailand is the K-Pop. Since everything is so convenient and the world is now connected, Thai people can get into Korean music easily. The songs are widely and fast spreading. People can listen to K-Pop songs by radio, mp3 player, TV, computer, and many more.
The popular Korean songs have the beautiful melody which is perfectly match with the lyric in Korean language.
One main reason that helps the Korean songs become popular is the singers. In order to be Korean singers, the trainee have compete with each other really hard. They must be hard working to improve their performances to get to be the chosen one for debut. When the good appearance, good voice, and the good performance trainees, both men and women, released the debut, they can easily make the people fall in love with them. High competition makes high quality out of them, no wonder why many people in Thailand keep listening to K-Pop music and being fan club of the Korean artists.
The strong evidence that supports how Thai people are into Korean pop music is the number of time that Thailand hosts the Korean concert. There are plenty of Korean concerts in Bangkok each year and this year in the April, it will also host the “2012 Korean Music Wave in Bangkok concert” too.
Korean music has great impact on Thai music industry also. It creates the wave for Thai music to increase the quality on producing music. These days, Thai companies, in music industry or other fields, also make deals with Korean music companies to get the copyright for selling and arranging the Korean concert in Thailand since they know it is going to make a lot of profits. Some companies also launch the programs to send the Thai singers or trainees to Korea to get more experiences in singing and dancing.
Receiving the reputation after one of the greatest Korean drama, Dae Jang Geum, Korean food seems to be more popular than before. In Thailand, there are many newly opened restaurants, especially in the area of Bangkok. There are many different kind of Korean food which can be found around Bangkok. From the basic food like Kimchi to Sokoki (Barbecue pork) or Dalkgalbi (Chicken with Koran sauce), Thailand has it all. So it will not be that hard if someone wants to eat Korean food in Bangkok.
Since Korean culture becomes the main stream that most of the youngsters are fascinated with, Bangkok has established the area of Korean town in order to be the center for Korean culture promoting. The Korean Town is locating on Sukhumvit road, one of the main roads in Bangkok, in the middle part of the city. With the convenient transportation of the sky train, there is no difficulty for going there. The place is quite interesting and all decorated and written in Hangeul, Korean alphabets.
Surrounding by the traditional decoration, Korean restaurants in Korean town become good place for eating. The price of the food is a little bit high when compare with Thai food. However, when compare with the food prices in Korea, it is about the same. But paying for the environment of Korea is worth it. Everything is imported from Korea, from the decoration to the food. The chefs are also Koreans so the customers with feel like they eat in Korea.
Korean dramas are such addictive. It expands its K-Drama wave very fast. With the interesting stories that make the audiences want to watch more and more of it, Korean dramas immediately become one of the programs that the popular TV stations have to put in its showing schedules.
In Thailand, one of the most popular types of Korean drama is the period drama. With the fabulous scenes of the tremendous palaces and the beautiful culture of dressing, the royal stories easily attract more audiences. Besides, the royal stories of the King and the servant are very interesting. The dramas which have the stories in the present time are being popular as well. Because of its cute style of love stories, the audiences especially the teenagers are wholeheartedly fall in love with it and wanting to go to Korea.
Korean drama is a huge wave that hits on Thailand. It is the main reason that makes Thai people come to Korea. Most of the travel agents to Korea provide the program called “Follow up the drama” which will guide their customers to the shooting locations of the drama; this type of travelling is gaining more of buyers and increases their profits as well.
Korean wave is the big impact in Thailand. It makes Korea gain more of reputation and become well known among Thai people. The wave makes people want to go to visit Korea to explore and experience the real Korean in the land of Korea.