Tickets to see North Korea's orchestra play at the Winter Olympic Games have become the hottest tickets in town with the concert more oversubscribed than many of the sporting events themselves.
Over 150,000 South Koreans have applied for only 1,060 tickets for the rare opportunity to see the Samjiyon orchestra play in two performances in the Olympic city of Gangneung on Thursday, and Seoul on Sunday.
The Ministry of Reunification, a South Korean government department aimed at promoting inter-Korean dialogue and culture, said that initially only 560 tickets were available for the Gangneung performance, and 500 for the Seoul concert.
Tickets are free for the 90-minute performances but have been so over-subscribed that the South Korean authorities reduced the number of government-invitees in order to increase public participation. As such, it has increased the seats available for the Seoul performance to 1,000.
Audiences will be selected through a raffle, in which organizers will randomly draw among those registered under police observation to ensure it is "clear and fair." Two tickets will be allocated per selected person, the ministry said. The musical program that the orchestra will play is unknown.