Misery, the Musical

Musical theater has a long history of successful productions that at first glance don't seem particularly fun or uplifting—consider Oliver!'s homeless orphans in Dickensian London, or The Sound of Music's Von Trapp family harmonizing its way out of Nazi-occupied Austria. But in Seoul, novice theater director Jung Sung San is pushing the concept of the unlikely musical to a new extreme. Jung, 36, currently has a cast in rehearsal for a musical about the prison camps of North Korea.

Called Yodok Story, the production is set in one of the most notorious of dictator Kim Jong Il's gulags,...

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