Saturday, October 27, 2012


Famous Figures in South Korea

1. Lee Myung-bak was sworn in as the 17th President of the Republic of Korea on February 25, 2008. Prior to his presidency, he was the CEO of Hyundai and the mayor of Seoul.

2. Kang Soo-jin was born in Seoul, South Korea. After initial ballet lessons in Korea, she went to Marika Besobrazova at the Académie de Danse Classique in Monte Carlo. In 1985, she won the Prix de Lausanne. In 1986, she became a member of the Stuttgart Ballet, where she was appointed Soloist in 1994 and Principal Dancer in 1997.

 3. Ban Ki-moon became the eighth Secretary-General of the United Nations after succeeding Kofi Annan in 2007. At the time of his election as Secretary-General, Mr. Ban was the Republic of Korea’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

4. Bae Yong Joon (born August 29, 1972 in Seoul, South Korea), is a South Korean actor best known for his roles in numerous television dramas and one of the first kkonminam icons. He is known as Yon-sama to his Japanese fans.

5. Park Tae-hwan (born September 27, 1989) is a South Korean swimmer. He is a member of the South Korean national swimming team, based in Taereung, Seoul. He won a gold medal in the 400 meter freestyle and silver in the 200 meter freestyle events at the 2008 Summer Olympics. He is the first Asian swimmer to win a gold medal in Men's 400 metre freestyle event, and the first Korean to win a medal in swimming.

6. Kim Dae-jung (3 December 1925 – 18 August 2009) was 8th President of the Republic of Korea from 1998 to 2003, and the 2000 Nobel Peace Prize recipient. He came to be called the "Nelson Mandela of Asia"for his long-standing opposition to authoritarian rule.

7. Kim Yuna (born September 5, 1990) is a South Korean figure skater.
She is the 2010 Olympic champion in Ladies' Singles, the 2009 World champion, the 2009 Four Continents champion, a three-time (2006–2007, 2007–2008, 2009–2010) Grand Prix Final champion, the 2006 World Junior champion, the 2005–2006 Junior Grand Prix Final champion, and a four-time (2002–2005) South Korean national champion.
Kim is the first South Korean figure skater to win a medal at an ISU Junior or Senior Grand Prix event, ISU Championship, and the Olympic Games. She is the first female skater to win the Olympic Games, the World Championships, the Four Continents Championships and the Grand Prix Final. She is one of the most highly recognized athletes and media figures in South Korea.

8. Lee Byung-hun is most famous for his roles in Park Chan-wook’s Joint Security Area, Kim Ji-woon’s A Bittersweet Life, and Korean TV Series IRIS, All In and Beautiful Days. He made his Hollywood debut in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra as Storm Shadow.

9. Myung-Whun Chung is one of the leading conductors of his generation. Also a multi awarded and prize-winning pianist.

10. Sarah Chang (born December 10, 1980) is an American classical violinist. Her debut came in 1989 with the New York Philharmonic and the Philadelphia Orchestra. Shortly thereafter, Chang was recognized as a child prodigy. She enrolled at Juilliard School to study music, graduating in 1999 and continuing university studies. During the 1990s and 2000s, Chang had major roles including being a soloist with the New York Philharmonic. She has also performed in countries such as England, France, Germany, Netherlands, China, South Korea, and Japan.

11. Park Jae-sang ( born December 31, 1977), better known by his stage name PSY, is a South Korean singer, songwriter, rapper, dancer, and record producer. He is well known for his humorous videos and stage performances, and for his hit-single "Gangnam Style", a song about where he came from and which talks about the life of the people of Gangnam, which is a neighbourhood in Seoul, South Korea. The music video for "Gangnam Style" is the most viewed K-pop video on YouTube, and also the most "liked" video on the site. Published on July 15, 2012, the video has over 530 million views, and more than 4.3 million "likes". Psy has appeared on numerous television programs, including The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Extra, Good Sunday: X-Man, The Golden Fishery, The Today Show, Saturday Night Live, Sunrise and The X-Factor.

12. Jung Ji-Hoon (born June 25, 1982), better known by his stage name Rain, is a South Korean singer, dancer, actor, model and designer.
Rain's musical career includes seven albums (six Korean, one Japanese), 19 singles and numerous concert tours around the world. His acting career began in 2003, when he won the KBS Best New Actor award for his role in the drama Sang Doo! Let's Go To School. In 2004, Rain won the KBS Excellence in Acting award for his role in the drama Full House. After starring in A Love To Kill, he acted in his first Korean film, I'm a Cyborg, But That's OK (2006), which won the Alfred Bauer Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival. Rain has acted in the American films Speed Racer (2008) and Ninja Assassin (2009), the latter of which made him the first Korean to win an MTV award.

13. Nam June Paik (July 20, 1932 – January 29, 2006) was a Korean American artist. He worked with a variety of media and is considered to be the first video artist.

14. Park Ji-Sung ( born 25 February 1981) is a South Korean footballer who plays as a midfielder for English club Queens Park Rangers, for whom he serves as captain. He was also the captain of the South Korean national team until his retirement from international football. He is the most decorated Asian footballer in history, as the first Asian player to have won the Champions League trophy and the first Asian to have played in a final of the UEFA Champions League. Park is able to play anywhere across the midfield and is noted for his exceptional fitness level, discipline, work ethic and off-the-ball movement.

15. Choi Min-sik
Choi Min-sik started his career as a theatrical actor before adding film roles, first with parts in Park Jong-won’s films Kuro Arirang and Our Twisted Hero and later in the 1990s by appearing as a police investigator in No. 3 and as a North Korean agent in Korea’s most successful film ever at that point, Shiri. In the 2000s, aided by the success of Shiri, Choi continued to get versatile lead roles first as a gangster in Failan and then as a 19th-century painter in Chihwaseon. In 2003, he took on the role that brought him international attention as revenge-seeking Oh Dae-su in Oldboy.

16. Yi So-yeon (born June 2, 1978) is a South Korean scientist and Ph.D. graduate of KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology). On April 8, 2008, she became the first Korean and the second Asian woman (defined as a female resident of a country in Asia at the time of her spaceflight)to fly in space, after Chiaki Mukai. 

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