Yun Geuk-yeong (1903-1988) wrote lyrics and music for many children’s songs. His nickname is Bandal Harabeoji [meaning “hte grandpa who composed the famous children’s song Bandal” (Half Moon)].
In 1926, he published the country’s first collection of children’s songs, including Bandal. In the same year, a recording was made of these songs. He met Bang Jeong-hwan, a children’s movement activist, in 1923, while studying in Tokyo. The two men organized the Saekdonghoe, an association dedicated to the cultural movement for children. In 1924, he launched the Dalia Society, the country’s first singing group, to encourage Korean children to remember and enjoy the country’s own songs rather than allow themselves to be influenced by Japanese songs. The Dalia Society did much to distribute Korean children’s songs, including Bandal, and performed a children’s musical, In Search of Parangsae (Blue Bird), the first such musical ever performed in the country.
Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to purchase Yun Geuk-yeong’s house, which his son has kept since his demise in 1988, and open it to the public under the name Bandal Harabeoji’s House by June 2015.