Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you: my most advanced first year high school students singing a revised version of the Cup Song from Pitch Perfect! Enjoy!
So, what do all the references in the song mean? Well, I’ll tell you! Ulsan is the city where my school resides. T-money is a type of “currency” used to travel all around Korea (it’s mostly used for intracity buses and subways, but it’s accepted by taxis too). Soju is the most popular adult beverage in Korea (*disclaimer* I don’t condone under-age drinking. The original song mentions bottles of whiskey, so I changed the lyric to the Korean equivalent, that’s all!). Nam-gu is home to the new downtown area of Ulsan (a “gu” is a district or neighborhood). In Nam-gu you’ll find outlet malls, department stores, movie theatres and restaurants. Dong-gu is the coastal area of Ulsan. There you can go to Ilsan beach, take in the ship yards, and stroll through scenic Daewangam Park! “Munsu” is short for Munsu soccer stadium, which is named after nearby Munsu Mountain. Grand Park is one of two main parks in Ulsan where you can enjoy the outdoors without actually leaving the city (additional mini-parks and bike paths are all over the city too, especially along the Taewha River). And lastly, true to the original song, Ulsan is surrounded by mountains (the gorgeous Yeongnam Alps are only a short bus ride away) and the mighty Taewha River runs right through the city!
I had an absolute blast working on this project with my students, and I think they liked it too!
If you’d like to replicate this song with your class, feel free to download the following document: In Ulsan – Lyrics. The file also contains the second half of a two-day lesson plan. The first day was mostly spent getting the rhythm down and exposing them to the lyrics. The second day, we put them together. Half the class sang while the other half played the rhythm, then they swapped. Have fun!