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Festival Features

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No. Subject Date
14 PyeongChang and Mariinsky To Cooperate 2016.08.24


In Vladivostok on Aug. 10, Artistic Director Myung-Wha Chung and Maestro Valery Gergiev signed a memorandum of understanding to promote broad-based cooperation between the PyeongChang Music Festival & School and the International Mariinsky Far East Festival. The areas of collaboration, which will eventually be extended to Japan and China, will include exchanging of artists and joint promotional activities.
13 [Press] PyeongChang music festival to cool summer 2016.06.22



The 2016 PyeongChang Music Festival & School will open July 12 and run until Aug. 9, easing the summer heat during the summer holiday.

Starting this year, the festival changed its name to include "PyeongChang" to promote the region to a wider audience for the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics. The Korean name of the festival is PyeongChang Daegwallyeong (Great Mountains) Music Festival. The festival is hosted by Gangwon Province and the Gangwon Arts and Culture Foundation.


The Korea Times By Yun Suh-young
URL : http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/culture/2016/06/143_207515.html

12 [Press] Summer getaway at Daegwallyeong 2015.07.31



There is no better way to escape the sweltering heat and humidity of summer than with a week-long trip to Daegwallyeong, the Alps of Korea. And there just happens to be no better time than now as the Great Mountains Music Festival and School (GMMFS), helmed by music directors Chung Myung-wha and Chung Kyung-wha, is taking place at the sleepy resort of Pyeongchang, Gangwon Province. Over the next week it is set to feature a spectacular program that meshes classics with contemporaries under the theme "French Chic."





The Korea time By Kwon Ji-youn
URL : http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/culture/2015/07/203_183371.html

11 [Press] Music festival brings Debussy to PyeongChang 2015.06.18


If 2013's GMMFS "Northern Lights ― Aurora's Song" celebrated the brilliance of Scandinavian composers, and last year's "O Sole Mio" observed those of the Mediterranean, this year's festival will focus on France, a cultural hub for artists, dancers, designers and architects. As it happens, 2016 celebrates the 130th anniversary of bilateral relations between Korea and France.




The Korea Times
[URL] http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/culture/2015/06/143_180454.html
10 [Press] Great Mountains music fest to return in ‘French Chic’ 2015.06.18


“Elegance is one word that immediately comes to mind as we think of fashion design or perfumes or gourmet food or wine; but almost as quickly come so many French words that have entered languages on every continent ― avant-garde, bourgeois, chic ... that speak to the highest in execution and taste,” said Myung-wha, during a press conference held at the Grand Ambassador Seoul hotel Monday. 




The Korea Herald 
[URL] http://khnews.kheraldm.com/view.php?ud=20150608000865&md=20150608190118_BL
9 [Press] 2014 Great Mountains Music Festival & School 2014.07.07
“Great Mountains International Music Festival”: The annual Great Mountains festival will run from July 15-Aug. 5, with the theme of “O Sole Mio,” highlighting music from southern Europe ― namely Spain and Italy. A total of 12 concerts will take place at the Alpensia Resort in Pyeongchang, Gangwon Province, and another 10 in other cities in the province. Artists participating in this year’s festival include Spanish flamenco dancer Beln Cabanes, conductor Antoni Ros Marb, guitarist Xuefei Yang, soprano Kathleen Kim, mezzo-soprano Elizabeth DeShong, violinists Svetlin Roussev, Clara-Jumi Kang, Kwun Hyuk-joo, cellists Jian Wang, Llus Claret and pianists Kevin Kenner, Kim Dasol and Kim Tae-hyung. Cellist Chung Myung-wha and violinist Chung Kyung-wha, the festival’s co-artistic directors, will also perform. For more information about the festival and its programs, visit http://www.gmmfs.com.



Korea Joongang Daily
URL : http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20140704000906
8 [Press] Music in the Mountains 2014.07.07


While last year’s theme revolved around the music of northern Europe, the festival has veered toward the southern part of the continent this time under the theme of “O Sole Mio,” especially focusing on the sunny sides of Italy and Spain, which many classical music virtuosos took inspiration from.

“Without Italy, there can be no talk of art,” said violinist Chung Kyung-wha during a press conference held Monday at the Millennium Seoul Hilton in central Seoul. Once again, Kyung-wha co-directed the festival with her older sister, Myung-wha.

“Starting with the Greek and Roman myths and civilization, Italy is where [Antonio] Stradivari, the master of string instruments, stayed during his musical career,” said Myung-wha. “Mozart, Schumann and Tchaikovsky were all taken by the dazzling sunshine of the Mediterranean.”




[Korea Joongang Daily
BY jin eun-soo, contributing writer [janna924@joongang.co.kr]
URL : http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/news/article/article.aspx?aid=2991463
7 [Feature] The Korea Times: Pyeongchang emerges as chamber music center 2014.05.20

The Great Mountains International Music Festival and School (GMMFS) has a tradition of showcasing chamber music at an elite level.
The Great Mountains International Music Festival and School (GMMFS) has a tradition of showcasing chamber music at an elite level.
/ Courtesy of the GMMFS Organizing Committee


By Do Je-hae

Although unknown to many Koreans, Pyeongchang is home to one of Asia's most comprehensive chamber music festivals.

Despite its remote location, the annual Great Mountains International Festival & School (GMMFS) has succeeded in gathering large audiences year after year as a rare platform for extensive chamber music experience in Korea.

The GMMFS will be held from July 24 through Aug. 3 with participation from some of the world's foremost instrumentalists gathering for chamber music ― the most enjoyable form of music-making. The GMMFS has transformed the cultural landscape of the region, with an ultra-modern 640-seat auditorium and a tented theater with a seating capacity of 1,300. The festival has grown over the years to fulfill its aim of becoming Korea’s “Aspen Music Festival.”
“The festival has gained an international reputation since its establishment 10 years ago. It is one of the most successful in Asia,” said Chung Myung-wha, GMMFS music director and cellist.

The festival has run the “Prominent Artists” each year, which has brought some world renowned musicians to Gangwon Province, such as the U.S. cellist Gary Hoffman and Chinese cellist Jian Wang.

A highlight of the event is violinist Chung Kyung-wha, who for the first time in years will perform Schubert. The renowned violinist has rarely performed works by the Austrian composer. The piece she has chosen is the lovely violin sonata in A major, which is well suited for the Chung's sensitive playing.

One of the aims of the festival is to give young artists a chance to perform. Korean pianists Son Yeol-eum and Kim Da-sol played together in the piano version of Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring" last year to celebrate the 100th year since the work's scandalous 1913 premiere in Paris. The festival’s tenth anniversary last year was devoted to introducing music by composers from Northern Europe.

The teaching aspect of the festival has been a priority for organizers. It has invited some of the most renowned teachers, such as Curtis Institute of Music President Roberto Diaz who is a celebrated violist.

The festival was founded by Kang Hyo, Juilliard and Yale professor of violin. Violinist Chung Kyung-wha and her sister Myung-wha have served as music directors since 2010.

The concerts will take place at Alpencia Hall, the main venue of the GMMFS and various parts of Gangwon Province.

URL: http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/culture/2014/05/148_157333.html

jhdo@koreatimes.co.kr

6 [Feature] Introduction to Nordic composers by Maestro Makila 2013.05.01


5 [Press] GMMFS brightens future of classical music 2012.07.29
Annual classical music festival brings together established and young artists in the sports and resort city of Pyeongchang


PYEONGCHANG, Gangwon Province -Great Mountains International Music Festival & School, an annual classical music event held in Pyeongchang, Gangwon Province, is opening a bright future for the country’s classical music scene by acting as a bridge between established and young Korean artists.

More than 60 distinguished and young up-and-coming artists collaborated in a series of high-quality performances, mesmerizing the audience with their musical harmony.

“I once again felt that the performance by Korean artists has advanced not only to an international level but also to a universal level. I was deeply moved,” said violinist Chung Kyung-hwa who has been leading the festival with her elder sister, cellist Chung Myung-hwa, since last year.


Artists perform Haydn’s “Creation” at the newly built Music Tent on Alpensia Resort in Pyeongchang, Gangwon Province, on Friday. (GMMFS)


GMMFS, in its ninth run this year, brought a number of virtuosos active in the international music scene, including the Chung sisters, violinist Bae Ik-hwan, violist Nobuko Imai, star Korean pianists Kim Sun-wook and Cho Seong-jin, and violinist Clara-Jumi Kang. The list also included violinists Kim Nam-yun and Daniel Austrich, cellist Kim Min-ji and pianist Shin Soo-jung.

“I feel lucky to have this rare opportunity to appreciate the performances together of acclaimed artists and young artists in this beautiful resort city,” said Cho Young, a 35-year-old classical music fan from Seoul.

The highlight of the festival was the opening of the new outdoor stage called “Music Tent” which can accommodate about 1,300 people. The outdoor stage instantly grabbed the attention of the audience and the artists, not only because of its horn-shaped roof and glass walls, but also its function as a concert hall for classical music.

“I am also very satisfied with the sound quality and the acoustic balance produced in the Music Tent,” Chung told reporters while having lunch on Saturday.

The festival’s biggest orchestral performance was held in the new venue on Friday. Sung Shi-yeon, assistant conductor of the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, led the GMMFS orchestra in a performance of Joseph Haydn’s “Creation,” featuring acclaimed Korean and international singers, including soprano Im Sun-hae, tenor Kim Woo-kyung and baritone Nicolay Borchev.

The new multi-purpose facility, built to the tune of some 11 billion won ($9.5 million), will offer more cultural programs, Kim Nam-soo, secretary general of the festival’s main organizer Gangwon Arts & Culture Foundation, said in a previous interview.

The three-week festival focuses on the relationship between music and dance.

Two stars from the American Ballet Theater, Maxim Beloserkovsky and Irina Dvorovenko, and two Korean dancers - Kim Joo-won, guest principal dancer for the Korean National Ballet and her dance partner Lee Dong-hoon - will help to visualize the overwhelming combination of music and dance.

The Chung sisters, the two artistic directors of the festival, performed Brahms’ Piano Quartet in G Minor, Op. 25 on Sunday as part of the festival’s “Distinguished Artists Series,” joined by pianist Peter Frankl and violist Maxim Rysanov.

The series includes a collaboration between The Michelangelo Quartet led by violist Nobuko Imai and pianist Kim Sun-wook. They are to perform Brahms’ Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34, on Aug. 3.

Kim will also collaborate with Chung Myung-hwa on Debussy’s cello sonata on Aug. 4. Distinguished artists will also perform Igor Stravinsky’s suite from “A Soldier’s Tale” with a tango on the same day. For “A Soldier’s Tale,” top Korean actor Ahn Sung-ki has been tapped to narrate the story of a soldier who trades his fiddle to the devil for a book that tells the future.

For the first time, the festival adopted an “H-seat” system. “H,” meaning “High Contributor,” are tickets priced at 250,000 won. Of that fee, 200,000 won will be used to cover the operating expenses of the festival to enhance the quality of the event while keeping the regular ticket prices low, organizers said.

The GMMFS will run through Aug. 11 at the Alpensia Resort and other venues in Gangwon Province. For more information on the festival, call (02) 725-3394-5 or visit www.gmmfs.com.

By Cho Chung-un (christory@heraldcorp.com)