Samulnori is an age-old Korean percussion tradition that serves as a beacon of Korean culture. Characterized by thunderous rhythms and quick tempos, it is an energetic musical form rooted in Korea’s agricultural past. Samulnori roughly translates as “the art of playing four instruments,” a reference to the four signature percussion instruments: the changoo (hourglass-shaped drum), the buk (barrel drum), the jing (large gong), and the kweanggarri (small gong). Master percussionist Sebastian Wang is the founding director of Washington Samulnori, an ensemble known for playing a contemporary style of this percussion tradition. He also teaches samulnori in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region as a way of preserving Korean heritage in the United States. “It gives us a sense of identity,” Sebastian explains.