Violin

Kyung Wha Chung


Faculty Member, The Juilliard School

Artistic Director, Pyeonchang Music Festival

Chair Professor for Music, Ewha University, Seoul

Member of the Presidential Committee for Cultural Enrichment, South Korea


Kyung Wha Chung is recognised throughout the world as one of the finest violinists of her generation.  A prolific recording artist, her dazzling and probing artistry has made her a much-acclaimed performer throughout her forty-year career.  Lauded for her passion, her musicality, and the intense excitement that she brings to her performances, Chung’s uniquely expressive interpretations of the violin literature have established her as an artist of the very highest stature.

Kyung Wha Chung: Bach in Bristol, London & New York

17 Apr 2017

Following her triumphant return to the European concert stage in 2014, Kyung Wha Chung now returns to the UK for two performances – the first, at St. George’s, Bristol (6 May), and the second at...

Kyung Wha Chung's recording of Bach tops the charts in Japan

14 Feb 2017

We are absolutely thrilled to hear that the brilliant Kyung Wha Chung’s recording of the complete violin solo works by Bach has topped the charts in Japan! Following the Gold Status in her...

Kyung Wha Chung’s complete Bach Sonatas & Partitas album achieves Gold Status

03 Jan 2017

Congratulations to Kyung Wha Chung, whose latest album of Complete Bach Sonatas and Partitas has achieved Gold Status in her native Korea.

The album is her first ever recording of Bach’s...

Kyung Wha Chung releases complete Bach Sonatas & Partitas on Warner Classics

16 Sep 2016

For her long-awaited return to the studio after 15 years, Kyung Wha Chung has made her first ever recording of Bach’s complete works for solo violin. In her own words, the project typifies “the...

Kyung Wha Chung opens the Verbier Festival and launches new website

21 Jul 2016

Violin legend Kyung Wha Chung will be opening this year’s Verbier Festival in the Salle des Combins on 22 July. Kyung Wha will perform Brahms’ Violin Concerto with the Verbier Festival Orchestra,...

Kyung Wha Chung signs to Warner Classics

10 Apr 2016

After a 15 year hiatus, it is our great pleasure to announce that Kyung Wha Chung has signed to Warner Classics. Her first album of complete solo Bach will be released in September- 45 years after...

Kyung Wha Chung awarded honorary doctorate

27 May 2015

The New England Conservatory in Boston have celebrated Kyung Wha Chung’s phenomenal career to date by conferring upon her an honorary Doctorate in Music.

In a moving speech, Kyung Wha was...

Kyung Wha Chung: The Complete Warner Recordings

13 Apr 2015

Warner Classics have just released Kyung Wha Chung’s collected EMI Warner recordings, available for purchase in the UK,...

Kyung Wha Chung joins ICA

09 Jan 2015

ICA is delighted to announce its partnership with Kyung Wha Chung, who joins the company for General Management (excluding Asia).  A prolific recording artist – recognised throughout the...

ICA represents legendary violinist Kyung Wha Chung’s return to the European stage

02 Oct 2014

It is with great pride and excitement that ICA represents legendary violinist Kyung Wha Chung’s return to the European stage.

The Korean violinist will perform with celebrated pianist Kevin...

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“A profoundly insightful musician”

Gramophone - Aug 2016

“A sound of utter resplendency, a brilliantly shining tone right across the instrument…simply, relentlessly magnificent.”

The Sunday Times (Paul Driver) - Dec 2014

“What a marvel is South Korean violinist Kyung Wha Chung…rich impassioned sound…immaculate definition…a miracle of momentum and humanity.”

The Herald, Scotland (Michael Tumelty) - Nov 2014

Kyung Wha Chung is recognised throughout the world as one of the finest violinists of her generation.  A prolific recording artist, her dazzling and probing artistry has made her a much-acclaimed performer throughout her forty-year career.  Lauded for her passion, her musicality, and the intense excitement that she brings to her performances, Chung’s uniquely expressive interpretations of the violin literature have established her as an artist of the very highest stature.  Born in South Korea, Chung first heard the violin at the age of six.  Instantly mesmerised by its tone, she was swiftly recognised as a child prodigy, making her concert debut aged nine with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, performing the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto.  At thirteen, Chung enrolled at The Juilliard School, New York, and began studying with renowned pedagogue Ivan Galamian, and later with Joseph Szigeti.

Upon winning the prestigious Edgar Leventritt Competition in 1967, Chung was immediately engaged by major American orchestras – including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic – and also performed at the exclusive White House Gala.  She made her sensational European debut in 1970, performing the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with Sir André Previn and the London Symphony Orchestra, at London’s Royal Festival Hall.  This concert was met with great critical acclaim and public attention, and – as a result – Chung received offers of concerts throughout the United Kingdom.  Subsequently obtaining an exclusive recording contract with Decca/London, Chung’s debut album – of the Tchaikovsky and Sibelius concertos with Sir André Previn and the London Symphony Orchestra – brought her to international attention, and she continued to perform with the world’s greatest orchestras (including the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, London Philharmonic and Boston Symphony Orchestra, among others).  Throughout her career, Kyung Wha Chung has enjoyed working alongside the world’s finest conductors, including Claudio Abbado, Daniel Barenboim, Charles Dutoit, Bernard Haitink, Riccardo Muti, Sir André Previn, Sir Simon Rattle, Sir Georg Solti and Klaus Tennstedt.  Her chamber music partnerships have included high calibre pianists such as Peter Frankl, Kevin Kenner, Stephen Kovacevich, Radu Lupu, and Krystian Zimerman.

Kyung Wha Chung has recorded numerous award-winning albums, and her extensive discography reflects the impressive breadth of her repertoire.  Following her recording contract with Decca/London, in 1988 Chung subsequently signed for a period with EMI Classics, and also released recordings with RCA and Deutsche Grammophon.  Winner of two Gramophone Awards (the first, for her Deutsche Grammophon album of Strauss and Respighi sonatas with Krystian Zimerman; the second, for her EMI recording of Bartók's Second Violin Concerto with Sir Simon Rattle), Chung has also received many prizes and top honours – including the Medal of Civil Merit from the South Korean government, and the Ho Am Prize for the Arts in 2011.

Following an injury to her hand, Chung stopped performing in 2005.  During this time away from the stage, she found a new calling as a teacher, joining the faculty of her alma mater, The Juilliard School.  In addition to this, Kyung Wha Chung is Chair Professor for Music at Ewha University in Seoul, and Charity Ambassador for Better World (an active patron for their Child Rescue Project in Africa).  She is also the Artistic Director of the Great Mountains Music Festival & School, based in South Korea.

Five years after her retirement, 2010 marked Chung’s triumphant return to the Asian stage.  Greeted by enthusiastic audiences and the highest critical acclaim, in 2013 she embarked on an extensive Asian tour of fifteen cities, including Seoul, Tokyo and Beijing.  Kyung Wha Chung made her much anticipated return to the European concert platform in December 2014, with a national UK tour culminating in a sensational sell-out recital at the Royal Festival Hall, London.  In July 2016 she opened the prestigious Verbier Festival, performing the Brahms Violin Concerto with the Verbier Festival Orchestra and Charles Dutoit.  Kyung Wha Chung has signed an exclusive international record contract with Warner Classics, the first release of which – Solo Bach Sonatas & Partitas – will be released in October 2016. This season will also see Chung performing works from the CD at Suntory Hall (January 2017), The Barbican (May 2017) and Carnegie Hall (May 2017).

April 2017