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This is a Korean name; the family name is Chung.
Myung-whun Chung
Background information
Born 22 January 1953 (1953-01-22) (age 56)
Seoul, Korea
Genres Classical
Occupations Conductor, pedagogue
Instruments Piano
Associated acts KBS Symphony Orchestra
Opéra de la Bastille
Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
RSO Saarbrücken
Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra
Myung-whun Chung
Hangul 정명훈
Hanja 鄭明勳
Revised Romanization Jeong Myeong(-)hun
McCune–Reischauer Chŏng Myŏng-hun

Myung-whun Chung (born 22 January 1953, Seoul) is a Korean-born pianist and conductor.

His sisters, violinist Kyung-wha Chung, and cellist Myung-wha Chung, and he at one time performed together as the Chung Trio.[1] He was a prize winner in the 1974 Tchaikovsky piano competition. He studied conducting at the Mannes College of Music and the Juilliard School. He also studied piano with Maria Curcio, the last and favourite pupil of Artur Schnabel.[2][3] He was an assistant conductor at the Los Angeles Philharmonic during the music directorship of Carlo Maria Giulini.[4]

In Europe, Chung was chief conductor of the Saarland Radio Symphony Orchestra from 1984 to 1990. He was principal guest conductor of the Teatro Communale, Firenze from 1987 to 1992.[4] He has conducted virtually all the prominent European and American orchestras and made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in New York in 1986 with Simon Boccanegra. At the end of the 1987-88 seasons, he received the Premio Abbiati award from Italian critics, and the following year awarded the Arturo Toscanini prize. From 1989 to 1994, Myung-whun Chung served as the Music Director of the Paris Opéra. He opened the inaugural season at the new Opéra Bastille with Berlioz's complete Les Troyens and received highly praised reviews from the music circle. In 1991, the Association of French Theatres and Music Critics named him "Artist of the year" and in 1992 he received the Legion d'honneur for his contribution to the Paris Opéra. An exclusive recording artist for Deutsche Grammophon since 1990, many of his numerous recordings have won international prizes and awards. These include Olivier Messiaen's Turangalila Symphony and Éclairs sur l'au-delà…, Verdi's Otello, Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique, Shostakovich's Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk with the Bastille Opera Orchestra; a series of Dvořák's symphonies and serenades with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, a series dedicated to the great sacred music with the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, including the award-winning recording of Duruflé's and Fauré's Requiems with Cecilia Bartoli and Bryn Terfel.

In 1995 he was honoured three times at the French Victoires de la Musiques Classiques, and was also named Meilleur Chef d'Orchestre de l'Année. He directed the world premiere of Messiaen's last work: the Concert à quatre for four soloists and orchestra, which the composer had dedicated to Myung-whun Chung and the Orchestre de la Bastille. He has been the Special Artistic Advisor of the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra since 2001 and was as awarded the highest Record Academy Prize by Japanese critics following his performances in Japan. In addition to being awarded numerous music prizes, Myung-whun Chung has also been honoured with Korea's most distinguished cultural award ‘Kumkwan’ for his contribution to Korean musical life and was named "Man of the year" by UNESCO. He served as Ambassador for the Drug Control Program at the United Nations and was Korea's Honorary Cultural Ambassador, the first in the Korean government's history. From 1997 he has been the Music Director of the Asia Philharmonic Orchestra, from 2000 the Music Director of the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, from 2001 the Special Artistic Advisor of Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra and from 2006 the Art Director and Principal Conductor of the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra.[5] [6]


External links

Preceded by
Hans Zender
Music Director, RSO Saarbrücken
Succeeded by
Marcello Viotti
Preceded by
Daniel Barenboim
Music Director, Opéra de la Bastille
Succeeded by
James Conlon
Preceded by
Principal Conductor, KBS Symphony Orchestra
Succeeded by
Dmitri Kitajenko
Preceded by
Marek Janowski
Music Director, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Special Artistic Adviser, Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Seung Gwak
Music Director, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra
Succeeded by


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