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Sisters Chung Kyung-wha and Myung-wha to leave PyeongChang Music Fest after the Olympics

PyeongChang Music Festival’s two artistic directors Chung Kyung-wha and Chung Myung-wha will leave their posts after the PyeongChang Olympics.

At a press conference in Seoul to promote the upcoming PyeongChang Winter Music Festival, violinist Chung Kyung-wha and cellist Chung Myung-wha said that they would wrap up their seven-year journey with the music festival.

“Though I leave the music festival after the Olympic Games, I will continue to perform for the betterment and improvement of Korea’s classical music,” violinist Chung said. “It has been a great pleasure and satisfying experience with the PyeongChang Music Festival,” cellist Chung added.

Violinist Chung Kyung-wha (right) and cellist Chung Myung-wha (left) speak at a press conference Wednesday at Koreana Hotel. (Yonhap)
Violinist Chung Kyung-wha (right) and cellist Chung Myung-wha (left) speak at a press conference Wednesday at Koreana Hotel. (Yonhap)

The two artistic directors were appointed to their posts in 2011. During their seven-year tenure, they organized seven summer music festivals and three winter festivals.

“It’s too early to discuss who will take the post. Nothing has been decided yet,” said Gangwon Art & Culture Foundation chief Kim Sung-hwan. While the summer edition of the festival will continue, he said that the fate of the winter festival is uncertain. The music festival was originally founded in 2004 as the Great Mountains Music Festival and School by violinist Kang Hyo with the aim of promoting Korea’s bid for the Winter Olympics.

Meanwhile, the PyeongChang Winter Music Festival kicks off its two-week-long run starting with the first concert Tuesday at Seoul Arts Center in Seoul.

Under the title of “A Musical Salute to PyeongChang,” the festival will host a myriad of musical performances ranging from classical music concerts to dance and jazz performances during the Winter Games. “We wanted to not only introduce Korea’s classical music but also welcome visitors with performances that are accessible,” Chung Kyung-wha said.

Artistic director Chung Myung-wha will join the performance with Korea’s traditional Pansori singer Ahn Sook-sun to introduce the genre-crossing music piece “PyeongChang Heungboga” dedicated to promoting the Winter Games. Composed by Kim Jun-hee, the song will have its world premiere at Tuesday’s concert. “Iris” -- a ballet performance choreographed by Kim Woo-mi -- will also have its world premiere at the same concert. Violinist Clara-Jumi Kang, cellist Young Song and pianist Kim Tae-hyung will perform Haydn’s Piano Trio in F Major, Hob XV/2 for the ballet performance.

Taking to the stage on the final day of the festival are artistic director Chung Kyung-wha and pianist Son Yeol-eum who will perform Brahms Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 77 and Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, respectively, with the Tongyeong International Music Festival Ensemble at Gangneung Arts Center on Feb. 16.

By Shim Woo-hyun (
Korea Herald daum