Cho Yong-su[Also written Jo Yong-su]
조용수 (Jo Yong-su)
CountryRepublic of Korea
BirthPyeongsan, Hwanghae-do, Korea (1932)
DeathSeoul, Republic of Korea (1992)
Korean puppeteer. One of the pioneering puppeteers who developed modern Korean puppetry, Cho Yong-su (Jo Yong-su) graduated from Konkuk University and became an author and journalist (1958-1961), and then worked for KBS-TV (Korean Broadcasting System) from 1962 to 1988. He produced and played in more than a thousand episodes of a children’s entertainment show called Hyeondae Puppet Theatre (also Hyundai Puppet Theatre, see Hyeondae Inhyeong Geukhoe), a group which he founded. He used primarily rod puppets, which became the style of puppetry most familiar to the generations of Koreans who remember his performances. His efforts have helped in guaranteeing the survival of traditional and contemporary puppetry in the Republic of Korea.
Cho Yong-su presented Heungbu and Nolbu, a popular Korean tale of the greedy Nolbu and his noble-hearted brother Heungbu, at the Iida Festival in Japan in 1982. Leading courses at Ewha Womans University (1964-1965 and 1972) and Soongeui Women’s College (1974-1976), he produced performances for children of samulnori (percussion music, literally “playing four instruments”), fan dance, and hwagwanmu (flower crown) dance.
Cho Yong-su was president of the Korean Puppetry Association (1982-1984).