North Korea stages new mass games show

PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea on Monday unveiled a new rendition of the “Arirang” mass games, the song-and-dance ensemble that has become its most famous tourist draw.

Opening night of the performance involving tens of thousands of young people singing, dancing and tumbling took place at Pyongyang’s May Day Stadium after a day of heavy rains.

North Korea has staged the mass performance off and on for more than a decade to showcase the country’s history and propaganda.

This year’s performance was timed to debut for the 60th anniversary Saturday of the end of the Korean War, and it featured fireworks as well as new scenes focusing on leader Kim Jong Un’s policies — including video of last December’s controversial long-range rocket launch. Large video screens flanking the stage showed footage from the Korean War as well as highlights from major sporting events.

“Arirang” is a traditional folk song beloved in both North and South Korea.

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