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Hie-Yon Choi

About this Artist

One of the most sought-after pianists of her generation, South Korean pianist Hie-Yon Choi first appeared on the international piano music scene when she won prizes at high-profile competitions such as Kapell, Epinal, Busoni and Viotti. Hie-Yon Choi has been since performing with prestigious orchestras of Europe, US and Korea such as das Rundfunkorchester Berlin, the National Symphony Orchestra (Washington DC), the Northern Sinfonia, the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra and the Korean Broadcast Symphony Orchestra and appears as a soloist in festivals and concert series.

 A milestone of Hie-Yon’s performing career was the four-year long cycle of all 32 Beethoven piano sonatas at the Kumho Art Hall in Seoul. For this series she received the Arts Award of the year 2005 by the Korean Arts & Cultural Association. Ten years later she completed another Beethoven cycle with all piano trios, violin sonatas and works for cello and piano. Her second cycle of all Beethoven piano sonatas has been taking place in various venues in Korea, Germany and the US and was completed in 2018.  

Hie-Yon’s other series of performances include ones that explored Brahms & his associates and that of French school. She has been collaborating with renowned musicians such as Truls Mørk, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, Peter Stumph, Mark Kosower, Romain Guyot, Ulf Wallin, Mikyung Lee, Soovin Kim.  Hie-Yon was awarded with Nanpa Award and Arts Award of the Year in Korea.  

 Alongside the canon of the classical piano literature such as Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms and Debussy, Music of 20th & 21st century forms another important part of Hie-Yon Choi’s career. A strong advocate of the new music, she was the inaugural Artist-in-Residence of Tong-Yeong International Music festival. She performed works of Olivier Messiaen, György Kurtag, Sofia Gubaidulina, York Höller, Unsuk Chin, Suhki Kang a. o. with the Seoul Philharmonic and Korea Chamber. Hie-Yon is a founding member of Ensemble Nova and 2021 Academy.  

 In 1999, Hie-Yon joined the piano faculty at the Seoul National University as one of the youngest professors in its history. She has been giving numerous master classes abroad; at the Guildhall School in London, Ecole normale in Paris, the Hochschule Freiburg, Karlsruhe, Düsseldorf, Cincinnati, Michigan, HongKong, China, Vienna Music Seminar, White Nights in St. Petersburg, Amalfi Coast, Talented Summer Brescia. She also serves as a jury member at international competitions such as Epinal and Orléans (President du Jury).  

Born in Inchon, South Korea, Hie-Yon Choi gave her debut concert at the age of 6 with the Inchon Philharmonic Orchestra. She won all four most coveted competitions in Korea (Dong-A, Choong-Ang, Korea Times, Ehwa-KyungHyang) and moved to Germany at the age of 18 to study with Prof. Klaus Hellwig. The late Prof. Hans Leygraf at Hochschule der Künste Berlin and the late Prof. György Sebök at Indiana University were further source of inspiration to her.  

Hie-Yon’s first Beethoven album was released early this year by Decca Korea. Her other recordings include Liszt Six Grand Etudes on Paganini, Isang Yun 5 Stücke, and Chopin Etudes Op. 10 & Op. 25.