north korean children play stupendously creepy music

I found this North Korean children’s ensemble performance disturbing yet also fascinating… Maybe it’s due to my Western bias towards self-determination, but the regimented – no, automated – nature of this; the youngness of the children; their forced smiles, really upset me to watch. Everything is rote, down to the last tilt of the head. It also makes me wonder how much “childhood” they have – how heavy this weighs on their tiny shoulders… Or do they even feel it as oppressive at all? Maybe if you grow up where play (of the spontaneous sort) is not on the cultural menu, you never yearn for it, never feel alienation or exploitation?

Thanks Justin Allart for passing this on.

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