Minsoo Sohn, piano

Described by the New York Times as “a genuine artist, with a thoughtfully conceived and poetic interpretation” and the Boston Globe as “born to play the piano,” Sohn is a Korean-American pianist known for his musical intelligence and masterful virtuosity —qualities that have earned him acclaim throughout the United States, Canada and Korea. His readings of the works of Bach and Beethoven in particular have placed him among the elect in this repertoire, and the inspired ingenuity of his performances of orchestral repertoire have earned him many accolades.

Sohn has toured extensively throughout North and South America, Europe, Israel and Korea and has appeared in important venues and festivals.

As a soloist, he has performed with leading orchestras including Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, Calgary Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic, Orchestre Symphonique de Québec, Jerusalem Camerata, Holland Symfonia, National Orchestra of Belgium, Cleveland Chamber Orchestra, Korean National Orchestra and KBS Symphony among others and collaborated with leading conductors such as Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Keith Lockhart, Pietari Inkinen, Mikhail Agrest, Sasha Goetzel, Jole Levi, Jane Glover, Jahja Ling and Georges Octors.

Sohn is particularly noted for his interpretation of Bach’s Goldberg Variations, and the New York Times praised his Honens-label recording of the work as a “beautifully articulated, radiant interpretation,” placing it one of the top classical recordings of 2011. His recordings also received critical acclaim by New Yorker Magazine, Plain Dealer, Gramophone, Calgary Herald and Toronto Star among others.

In 2020, coinciding with the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth, Mr. Sohn concluded his four year immersion in the composer’s music, which has included concert series, recordings and writings. Over the course of his Beethoven project, Mr.Sohn performed and recorded the composer’s thirty-two sonatas in series of recitals at Seoul Arts Center and recording sessions at Tongyeong Concert Hall. The recital series also included Beethoven’s monumental Diabelli Variations and Bagatelles. The Sony Classical released the highly anticipated nine-album set of “Complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas” in the Fall of 2020.

Sohn owes much of his success to his mentors, Russell Sherman and Wha Kyung Byun, with whom he studied with at the New England Conservatory in Boston.

After teaching at Michigan State University, Sohn returned to South Korea where he instantly became a much sought after performer and pedagogue, as he joined the faculty at Korean National University of Arts. He has also served on the jury at prominent international piano competitions including Honens, Top of the World and Busoni Competition.

Mr.Sohn continues to expand his reputation as a teacher, performer and a musical thinker. In fall 2023, Sohn joined the piano faculty at New England Conservatory.

Jung Ja Kim, piano

Concert Date: Tuesday April 15, 2014, 8pm; Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center

Program: Ravel Sonatine, Miroirs, Valse nobles et sentimentales; Copland Piano Variations

Biography: Korean-born pianist JUNG-JA KIM has won extraordinary critical acclaim for her pianistic brilliance and rare insight. Early in Ms. Kim’s career, she received national recognition in her native land and became a top prizewinner of major competitions. A scholarship to The Juilliard School brought her to the U.S., where her principal teachers were Irwin Freundlich and Ilona Kabos. During her studies at Juilliard, Leonard Bernstein selected Jung-Ja Kim for a televised concerto performance of the New York Philharmonic Young People’s Concerts. She also added First Prize in the Kosciuszko Chopin Competition to her long list of accomplishments. Following this were numerous appearances throughout the U.S. as well as a highly successful New York recital debut at Carnegie Recital Hall as a winer of Young Concert Artists; the New York Times stated: “A discerning thoughtful, musician. Her phrasing was graceful, her technique fluent. Best of all, her piano sound was consistently beautiful. Brilliant playing…a vibrant, compelling performance.” Since that time, she was awarded a Martha Baird Rockefeller Grant, which sponsored a series of debut performances in major cities throughout Europe. Ms. Kim has appeared as a soloist with many orchestras including the Baltimore Symphony and the St. Louis Chamber Symphony, and as a recitalist at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, Boston’s Gardner Museum and the Phillips Gallery in Washington, D.C. She currently serves on the piano faculty at the Boston Conservatory.