DMZ Peace Train is a free festival taking place within sight of the de-militarized zone, or joint security area, between South and North Korea.
The festival begins this Friday, 7 June, and runs until Sunday 9 June. It will feature artists including The Velvet Underground’s John Cale and Danish post-punk band Iceage.
The festival is designed to promote peace between the two nations, with its tagline ‘dancing for a borderless world’.
It was founded in 2018 by Glastonbury and The Great Escape main booker Martin Elbourne, who visited the DMZ with Korean festival organisers in 2017. He then convinced Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon and senior ministers to fund the festival.
Peace Train’s website describes the event as “a non-commercial yet public-friendly music festival, experiencing peace through music and exploring and discovering contemporary peace.”
It adds: “Peace Train’s hope is that through culture, we can continue to rediscover the things in our lives to which we become indifferent and numb, and to pass on values such as freedom, peace, human rights, and tolerance to future generations.”
The festival has no headliner, and says it does not “dress itself up”, focusing only on the essentials. It “does not discriminate, control or prescribe. It runs for everyone’s free enjoyment, drawing on diversity.”
The festival is organised by Peace Train Inc, with sponsorship from Korea Tourism Organization, Red Stripe, Gangwon Center for Creative Economy & Innovation, and VIBE.