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Nearly 150,000 apply for free tickets to N.K. concerts

All Headlines 11:44 February 03, 2018

SEOUL, Feb. 3 (Yonhap) -- Nearly 150,000 people have applied for free tickets to a North Korean art troupe's performances slated for next week in Seoul and Gangneung to celebrate the opening of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, a ticket agency said Saturday.

North Korea will send its 140-member Samjiyon art troupe to South Korea for a concert in Gangneung, a sub-host city of the Winter Olympics, and another in Seoul.

Organizers plan to distribute free tickets to the concerts to successful applicants selected by a lottery.

The event's ticket agency, Interpark, said that as of 9 a.m. on Saturday, 35,653 people had applied for tickets to the troupe's first performance at Gangneung Arts Center on Thursday.

A KCNA file photo released Nov. 17, 2016, shows a performance by the Samjiyon art troupe in Pyongyang. (For Use Only in the Republic of Korea. No Redistribution) (Yonhap)

The North's second performance scheduled for Feb. 11 at the National Theater of Korea in Seoul drew 106,576 applicants by the same hour, Interpark said.

The agency plans to select 250 applicants for the Seoul performance and 280 for the one in Gangneung by lottery and give them two free tickets each, agency officials said.

The list of successful applicants will be made public on the Interpark website Tuesday, they added.

In addition to the lottery-picked audiences, about 1,100 underprivileged people and families displaced and separated by the 1950-53 Korean War will be invited to the concerts, according to the organizers.

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