One of the most important musical events in Korea and all of Asia is the Tongyeong International Music Festival. The festival was held from Mar. 31 to Apr. 9 at the Tongyeong International Music Hall in Tongyeong, South Gyeongsang Province. This year marked the 16th edition since its inaugural year in 2000. The festival paid tribute to Korean-born German composer Yun I-sang. He was a world-renowned composer born in Tongyeong in 1917, and became one of the most influential and well respected composers in the history of Western music.
Under the theme of “From Asia to the World,” this year’s festival focused on contemporary music from the West and the East. The festival presented various performances conducted by numerous outstanding artists, and winners of the ISANG YUN Competition. It was especially meaningful as this year marked the 100th birthday of Yun I-sang. The opening performance was Yun’s most serious piece, the “Cello Concerto,” which is an autobiographical piece that mirrors Yun’s experience. Moreover, various performances from international artists including the Isang Yun Soloists of Berlin and the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra heightened mood of the festival. They created a wonderful harmony and majestic atmosphere by connecting the western style with the traditional Korean style.
According to the CEO of Tongyeong International Music Festival Foundation, Florian Riem, “Yun is the only Korean composer of the 20th century that gained international importance.” He added: “He is still a household name in Western contemporary music and he opened the door for a new generation of young Korean composers.”
Christine Kim Staff Reporter (email@example.com)
1. When was the Tongyeong International Music Festival held?
2. Who is Yun I-sang?
3. What is the theme of the festival?
1. What is a music festival? What do people do in a music festival?
2. Do you know Yun I-sang? Have you heard any of his songs?
3. What is your favorite song? Who is your favorite singer? Why?