The Drucker Institute to host noridan, Korean social entrepreneurs, for a workshop and parade in Claremont

The Drucker Institute at Claremont Graduate University will host noridan, a group of South Korean social entrepreneurs who turn scrap metal and other discarded material into musical instruments, for a public workshop and parade in mid-April.

Using “We play, imagine and recycle!” as its motto, noridan is widely recognized as a leading innovator in its field. The group has performed from Hong Kong to London, and it was honored with the Drucker Society of Korea’s 2009 Social Innovation Award.

“We create a ‘second life’ for car wheels, PE pipe, and wasted bicycles by adding imagination,” said Ahn Suk-hee, noridan’s CEO.

On April 13, the group will conduct a workshop at the Drucker Institute in which students from the Claremont Unified School District and other members of the public will join with some two-dozen members of noridan to make instruments. The workshop is set to begin at 3:30PM. Space is limited, and you must reserve a spot in advance.

On April 14, noridan will lead an “eco-parade” along a one-mile route through Claremont. The parade is set to begin at 10AM at the corner of College Avenue and Eleventh Street (recently renamed Drucker Way). It will end at Shelton Park (Harvard Avenue and Bonita Avenue). Members of the public are invited to join the parade and to march along with noridan.

In addition to the workshop and parade, noridan representatives will hold a forum on social entrepreneurship with students from the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management.

“Peter Drucker proclaimed that social entrepreneurs are those who are able to improve ‘the performance capacity of society,’” said Rick Wartzman, executive director of the Drucker Institute, a campus-wide resource of CGU. “There is much to learn from noridan about the practice of social entrepreneurship, leadership, sustainability and the power of music in helping forge the bonds of community.”

The visit by noridan has been officially designated as a part of the Drucker Centennial, which marks the 100th birthday of Peter F. Drucker, the father of modern management; author of 39 books on organizational behavior, innovation, economy, and society; and winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The two-year celebration, which features conferences, lectures and other events around the world, is being led by the Drucker-Ito School and the Drucker Institute. (For more information on the Drucker Centennial, please visit

Polham, a major South Korean clothing company, is generously supporting noridan’s activities in Southern California as part of Polham’s “Happy Promise” campaign. The campaign aims to promote a green and healthy earth, in part by urging people to recall the happiness that they have been able to enjoy thanks to a clean environment.

About noridan

Founded in Seoul in 2004, noridan has gained a reputation for innovation and creativity not only by turning unwanted industrial material into cultural products, but also through the stories of its performers, who see no boundaries between work and play.

Some 60 members of all ages—producers, performers, media artists and designers—work together to solve social issues as they draw on their diverse experiences.

Each year, noridan performs more than 200 times and puts on about 1,000 workshops in which its members show the public how to make instruments from scrap. By doing so, they teach lessons about sustainability while also helping build the imagination. During noridan’s programs, roles reverse (between students and teachers, as well as parents and children), and the drama of sound is captured as noridan demonstrates how nearly everything can be turned into an instrument. In this way, noridan is a performance troupe, factory and school all rolled into one.

In addition to reusing unwanted materials, noridan also breathes new life into wasted spaces by creating eco-friendly playgrounds throughout South Korea. Noridan is currently working to build a studio and “cultural hub” under a bridge of the Seoul transit system.

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