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Participants during the 70th Anniversary Mass Games performance at the Rungrado May Day Stadium, which has a claimed capacity of 150,000. Pyongyang, North Korea. Images/video by @tariqzaidiphoto

One of the few times the outside world is allowed a glimpse of North Korea is at its unique Mass Games, which occurred in September 2018 after a break of five years. The month long Festival opened this year with the main event at the Rungrado May Day Stadium in Pyongyang, which is the largest stadium in the country with a claimed capacity of 100,000. This year, the Games, which opened on September 9th, marked the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the People’s Republic. This year’s performance was different to previous ones because it left out any explicitly anti-American imagery, and any imagery of missiles or nuclear weapons. This year featured camera drones, light and laser shows and a lit-up underfloor. The Games are an important political, economic and cultural event in the North Korean calendar. They require a training regimen that began in March for the tens thousands of performers, and are one of the major occasions at which foreign tourists, mainly from China and Europe, visit the country. The Games are also crucial in how North Korea projects its image out to the world.

Music to this video: “Kodama” composed and played by Othon @OthonPanMuzik

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