Monday 20 February 2017


The British Council today officially launched UK/KOREA Creative Futures 2017, a year-long celebration of the long-standing relationship between the UK and Korea which will see cultural events, exhibitions and activities taking place in both countries throughout 2017. Audiences will have the chance to experience innovative and exciting creative work from some of the best UK and Korean artists and institutions.

The United Kingdom and Korea are closer today than they have been for many years. Success in creativity and innovation will define both the UK’s and Korea’s futures. Throughout UK/Korea 2017-18 we will present ways to forge futures for both emerging artists and new audiences in the arts and creative industries of the UK and Korea. For this reason the slogan of UK/Korea 2017−18 is “Creative Futures”.

Speaking ahead of the opening of the year, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Karen Bradley said:

“Our world famous creative industries are the glittering jewel in the crown of British industry, and I'm delighted that the Korean public will now be able to experience the brilliance of the UK’s creativity and innovation first hand.

"Nurturing, supporting and developing creative talent is a priority for the UK, and our international programme of events are instrumental in showcasing a more global Britain to the world."

Martin Fryer, Director Korea, British Council said:

“We hope the joint year will stimulate and encourage more creative collaboration between the art organisations and artists in the UK and Korea. This will bring increased mobility and innovation in arts and creative sectors for both countries.”

The London Symphony Orchestra will open the season with a concert on 20 February. The year will bring the best examples of UK dance, theatre, film, visual arts, literature, music, architecture, design and fashion to Korea from February 2017 to March 2018 in multiple cities including Seoul, Busan, Cheongju, Jeonju and Tongyeoung. 

Some highlights of the UK/Korea 2017-18 programme include:

London Symphony Orchestra Concert (20 February)

The Golden Dragon by Music Theatre Wales (31 March – 2 April)

British Film Director Michael Winterbottom’s Retrospective and Special Talks at the Jeonju International Film Festival (27 April – 7 May)

Atomos by Random Dance Company (26 – 27 May)

Intercity Arts Project: Busan – Sheffield (September – October)

Richard Hamilton Exhibition (3 November 2017 to 21 January 2018)

Candoco Dance Company’s new work (March 2018)

The year also aims to further boost the UK business, education and science in Korea and facilitate long-term and sustainable partnerships through market development, new networks and increased mobility. UK/Korea 2017-18 will focus on five themes City-to-City, Transformation and Innovation through Digital Technology, Diversity and Inclusion, Creative Entrepreneurship and Creative Learning.

The British Council is leading UK/Korea 2017-18 in association with a host of partners in the UK and Korea. UK partners include the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), British Embassy Seoul, the Department for International Trade, Scottish Government, Arts Council England, Wales Arts International, Creative Scotland and a range of arts organisations. Korean counterparts and partners include the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Korea Cultural Centre, city authorities and diverse arts and culture organisations and festivals.

Notes to Editor

For more information about the British Council, contact

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries. Using the UK’s cultural resources we make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust.

We work with over 100 countries across the world in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Each year we reach over 20 million people face-to-face and more than 500 million people online, via broadcasts and publications.

Founded in 1934, we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. The majority of our income is raised delivering a range of projects and contracts in English teaching and examinations, education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. Eighteen per cent of our funding is received from the UK government.

We established our operation in Korea in August 1973. We currently provide services in education promotion, English teaching and examinations including IELTS and Aptis. We promote partnerships in arts, social entrepreneurship, teacher training and education.

UK/Korea 2017-18 website: