Festivals, Indie / Alternative — July 24, 2015 at 2:29 pm

Zandari Festa returns for 4th annual musical celebration in Seoul


Korea’s premier music showcase festival, Zandari Festa is set to return to the musical mecca of Hondae, featuring over 200 artists across 21 venues.


Zandari was launched in 2012, when 204 local and international acts performed in almost two dozen venues across the Hongik University (Hongdae) neighborhood over two days. With each subsequent year, it has established itself as one of the most important independent music events in the country, having expanded to include a third day, more overseas musicians, music workshops and representatives from music festivals around the world—including V-Rox in Russia, SXSW in Texas, and Liverpool Sound City. It is a meaningful opportunity for cultural exchange, providing Korean bands with the chance to be invited to tour abroad, and overseas bands with the chance to play here in Korea. Hongdae, known as the center of Korea’s independent arts culture, is the area of central Seoul in which the non-mainstream music scene kicked off some 20 years ago. With music and art happening not just in bars and clubs but in shops, cafes and on the street, this festival truly celebrates the community spirit.



Taking its name from “잔다리(Zandari)”, the Korean word for the small bridge that used to stand in Hongdae’s Seokyo-dong area, it is the festival’s ambition to be a bridge between the artists, audience members, producers and the overseas music scene. Zandari bills itself as a DIY Town Festival, in which the artists, local businesses, community members and audience collaborate in a kind of street showcase of local culture. Instead of some big corporate sponsor, Zandari is backed by such independent entities as the Seokyo Music Labels Association, Korea Independent Music Producers Association and Musicians Union. Another unique aspect is that musicians are not invited to take part by a big production company with a big budget, but are free to apply, as well as encouraged to promote their own shows in whatever way they can (in addition to the SNS, outdoor showcase stage and other marketing services Zandari provides). All of this takes place in a joyous, celebratory and often humorous fashion, tinged with a sense of pride.




This year Zandari will be taking place over 3 days (October 2nd – 4th) across some 21 different venues in the music mecca of Hongdae, and featuring over 200 artists from Korea and internationally.

The festival is now accepting applications for artists from all over the world, until July 31st. The application form and very informative guide, which covers the requirements, selection process and benefits for artists (including provision of equipment and staff) can be found in both English and Korean on Zandari Festa’s website