Annus Mirabilis

The title of this post refers strictly to my experiences as a fan of Wang Ji Won.  It has proved to be a year of miracles, a year of wonders,  thanks to one astonishing week.

I have been a fan of Ms. Wang for four years now, and the week started with a surprise that was literally incredible, difficult to believe.  I received a totally unexpected gift package. A copy of the DVD of her debut movie One Line and a copy of a limited run magazine featuring an interview with her made me smile with delight, but discovering this underneath them left me stunned:

For a fan FAR removed geographically from his bias, and even FARTHER removed demographically from her fanbase, receiving a framed autograph was truly “mirabilis”, a marvellous surprise I struggled to process. But the best was yet to come.

Receiving Ji Won’s autograph was a stunning surprise, but what cemented the week and thus the year as miraculous was the fulfilment of a long held, oft-stated dream.  Ever since I became her fan, I have dreamed of seeing Wang Ji Won in a show about dance.  Swan Club made that dream come true.

This ballet-themed special was a very emotional experience to watch. Seeing Ji Won tear up when being surprised at meeting her famous seonbae, KNB’s prima ballerina Kim Ji Yeong made me all teary-eyed too. Watching her grimace and weep with pain in her pilates/rehab session made me so proud of her inner strength , a reminder of the iron will that has driven her building a new career after  being forced out of the ballet world she so clearly still loves.  Watching her smile and laugh, with her fellow cast members and with her ballet colleagues made me so very happy.

Above all, watching her actually DANCE blew me away. Her beauty and  her grace were mesmerising, and the sheer joy she got from expressing her love of dance again,  was more than I had dared hope for.  Even the song she chose to dance to was an assertive statement – Amor Fati. If translated as “Love Your Fate” it comes across as an expression of her resolute determination to do just that: Fate may have taken her away from ballet and into acting, but instead of pining or mourning, she is “loving her fate” and making the most of every opportunity she gets. Watching the show was the most emotionally satisfying TV experience of the year, and I’ve already lost count of how many times I’ve watched her segments.  I am sure like many performers, she dreads reading internet comments, but I really hope she reads this one, because it comes from my heart with sincerity and truth:

To my incomparable bias Wang Ji Won I say, THANK YOU! Thank you for the wonderful surprise gift of your autograph, but most especially, thank you for touching my heart by giving your fans, all of us, such a wonderful, beautiful, “mirabilis” gift – the gift of your dance.  고맙습니다,  항상 고맙습니다!

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