Chin Un-suk named new SPO artistic adviser
Annual Ars Nova concert series to kick off next month
Published : Sep 28, 2016 - 17:19
Updated : Sep 28, 2016 - 17:19
Longtime Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra composer-in-residence Chin Un-suk, 55, has been named the orchestra’s new artistic adviser, replacing current interim artistic director Michael Fine, a Grammy-awarding classical recording producer.

Chin, a famed local classical music composer based in Berlin, will officially begin her role as new artistic adviser starting Oct. 1.

“Back in February I took a business trip to Berlin and met up with Chin Un-suk and practically begged her to take up the position,” said SPO CEO Choe Heung-sik during a press conference held at the Sejong Center in Seoul on Wednesday.

“She has consistently organized our Ars Nova concert series, a program that we are very proud of ... she has been dedicated to the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra and has stayed with us through all of our hardships,” Choe added. 

Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra CEO Choe Heung-sik (left) and newly appointed Artistic Adviser Chin Un-suk speak during a press conference held at the Sejong Center in Seoul on Wednesday. (Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra)

Chin joined the SPO as its composer-in-residence in 2006. During her tenure with the SPO, Chin played a big role in broadening the orchestra’s repertoire to include more contemporary music and organizing the annual Ars Nova modern classical music concert series.

“I feel a lot of weight on my shoulders. This job entails a lot of responsibility,” said Chin at the press conference. “Having worked with the orchestra for the past 10 years, I feel a huge sense of responsibility to my orchestra family, but having said that, I am still very happy about my new position.”

“We are going to have many more concerts starting next year. I also have plans to increase our orchestra’s repertoire as well as have a wider variety of musical concepts,” she added. “Although much of my work has been dedicated to contemporary music, my roots are classical, so I’m not looking to solely push the music toward the contemporary side. There needs to be a balance.”

Upholding its decadelong tradition, this year’s Ars Nova concert series will once again introduce a number of modern classical music pieces including three Asia premieres. The two-part concert series focusing on the sounds of the piano is slated to kick off next month.

The “Pianoscope” concert, the third in the Ars Nova series of the year, will be held at Oct. 3 at the Sejong Chamber Hall in Seoul, while the fourth, “Fantastical Tales,” will be performed Oct. 7 at the LG Arts Center. 

Newly appointed Artistic Adviser Chin Un-suk speaks during a press conference held at the Sejong Center in Seoul on Wednesday. (Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra)

The concerts will feature performances by Malaysian pianist Mei Yi Foo under the baton of Dutch conductor Antony Hermus.

The SPO also recently named two foreign conductors as its new principal guest conductor and conductor-in-residence in an initial three-year agreement that commences in January 2017.

Thierry Fischer, music director of the Utah Symphony Orchestra, will assume the position of principal guest conductor, while Markus Stenz, chief conductor of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, will take over as the SPO’s new conductor-in-residence.

By Julie Jackson (juliejackson@heraldcorp.com)