Korean born violinist YooJin Jang with returning collaborative pianist Renana Gutman perform Johann Paul von Westhoff’s Suite for Violin No. 6 in D Major and Robert Schumann’s Violin Sonata No. 2, Op. 121 live under the Tiffany glass dome of the Chicago Cultural Center for this Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Broadcast.
Applauded by The Strad for her “fiery virtuosity” and “consummate performances,” violinist YooJin Jang is a winner of the 2017 Concert Artists Guild Competition, and is also First Prize winner of the 2016 Sendai International Music Competition in Japan. These two victories have resulted in a busy itinerary of international recital and concerto engagements, and also the release of two new recordings, including a CD of her prize-winning Sendai concerto performances. “Jang is a performer without fear or technical limitation” (Boston Musical Intelligencer).
A native of Korea, YooJin has been performing with top Korean orchestras since the age of nine, including the KBS Symphony Orchestra and the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra. Additionally she has appeared with the Budapest Festival Orchestra led by Ivan Fischer, Bulgaria National Radio Symphony Orchestra under Emil Tabakov, Sofia Philharmonia Orchestra with Ljubka Biagioni, the Erato Ensemble led by Sholomo Mintz, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, Spain’s Extremadura Orchestra conducted by Jesus Amigo, and the NEC Philharmonia led by Josh Weilerstein.
Yoojin’s 2018-2019 season begins with a solo appearance with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra playing Beethoven Violin Concerto. Additional highlights of the season include performances with the Osaka Symphony Orchestra, Dubuque Symphony and DuPage Symphony, as well as recitals at the Nantucket Musical Arts Society, Patrons for Young Artists, Macon Concert Association, Dame Myra Hess Series, Rockefeller University, Pepperdine University and Port Washington Library. In the spring of 2019 Yoojin will give her Carnegie Hall debut in Weill Recital Hall.
Other career highlights for YooJin include recitals in Boston at Jordan Hall and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum; in Chicago for the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert series; in Japan for the Sendai Competition Winner’s series in Sendai, Nagoya and at Hamarikyu Asahi Hall in Tokyo; and chamber music performances with Caramoor’s Rising Stars. Ravinia’s Steans Institute on Tour and Music From Marlboro.
In 2017, two new CD’s were released, including YooJin’s live performances of the Mendelssohn and Stravinsky Violin Concertos with the Sendai Philharmonic Orchestra and Junichi Hirokami, and a recital disc featuring music of Mendelssohn, Stravinsky, Grieg and Sibelius with pianist Kae Ozawa. Her first CD entitled “Korean Young Musicians” was released on the KBS (Korean Broadcast System) label, in cooperation with Aulos media & KBS Classic FM. She is also regularly heard on the radio, including a recent appearance on WQXR’s McGraw Hill Young Artists Showcase.
A seasoned young artist, YooJin’s latest victories at CAG and Sendai follow a long line of international competition success. In 2013, she won Japan’s 4th International Munetsugu Violin Competition, which included the loan of the 1697 ‘Rainville’ Stradivari violin. She was also a top prize winner at the prestigious International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, the Michael Hill International Violin Competition (including the Audience Prize and Best Performance of the New Zealand Commission Work), and the Yehudi Menuhin Competition.
Also a passionate chamber musician, YooJin is a co-founder of The Kallaci String Quartet in 2012, which made its international debut at the Kumho Art Hall in Seoul, Korea and the Seoul Spring Festival of Chamber Music. Recognized for her creative work in chamber music, she won the 2011 Borromeo String Quartet Guest Artist Award, and in 2009 she was awarded the Schloss Weikersheim Scholarship as part of the London String Quartet Competition. YooJin has also participated in the Marlboro and Ravinia Festivals, where she worked with artists such as Menahem Pressler, Dénes Várjon, and Peter Wiley.
Born in Korea in 1990, YooJin Jang holds a Bachelor of Music from The Korean National University of Arts, where she studied under Nam Yun Kim. She earned a Master of Music, Graduate Diploma, and Artist Diploma from New England Conservatory, as a student of Miriam Fried, and she is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts at NEC.
Praised by the New York Times for her “passionate and insightful” playing, Renana Gutman has performed across four continents as an orchestral soloist, recitalist and collaborative artist. She played at venues like The Louvre Museum, Grenoble Museum (France), Carnegie Recital Hall, People’s Symphony Concerts, Merkin Hall (New York), St. Petersburg’s Philharmonia (Russia), Stresa Music Festival (Italy), Ravinia Rising Stars (Chicago), Jordan Hall, Gardner Museum (Boston), Herbst Theatre (St. Francisco), Menuhin Hall (UK), UNISA (South Africa), Marlboro (VT), and National Gallery, Phillips Collection, and Freer Gallery (Washington DC).Her performances are heard frequently on WQXR Young Artists Showcase, NY, WFMT Dame Myra Hess, Chicago, and MPR in Performances Today, MN.
VIDEO: Renana Gutman performs Chopin's Nocturne in D-Flat Major
Renana was one of four young pianists selected by the renowned Leon Fleisher to participate in his workshop on Beethoven piano sonatas hosted by Carnegie Hall, where she presented performances of “Hammerklavier” and “Appassionata” to critical acclaim. Her recording of Chopin etudes op.25 will be released in 2019 by “The Chopin Project” – listen here.
A top prize winner at Los Angeles Liszt competition, International Keyboard Festival in New York, and Tel-Hai International Master Classes, she performed concerti such as Brahms 2nd, Rachmaninoff-Paganini Variations, and Beethoven’s “Emperor” with the Jerusalem Symphony, Haifa Symphony, Belgian “I Fiamminghi”, and Mannes College Orchestra.
Her festival appearances included Marlboro and Ravinia, where she collaborated with prominent musicians like pianist Richard Goode, clarinetist Anthony McGill and members of the Guarneri string quartet, to name a few.
High in demand as a chamber musician, Renana toured with “Musicians from Marlboro”, and served as the collaborative pianist of Steans Institute at Ravinia Festival from 2012-2018, where she performed chamber music and lieder extensively.
In last seasons, she performed chamber music with violist Kim Kashkashian, violinist Miriam Fried, and clarinetist Charles Neidich.
She tours regularly with violinist Alexi Kenney, winner of Avery Fisher Grant. Other duo-recital partners are violinists Yoojin Jang, Tessa Lark, and InMo Yang.
Renana premiered newly commissioned music by Paul Schoenfield, Tamar Muskal, Judith Zaimont, and other living composers. As a member of “Echoes of Hope” project, she is also dedicated to performing obscure pieces by Jewish composers who perished in the Holocaust; Erwin Schulhoff, Viktor Ullmann, and others.
A former founder of the piano trio “Terzetto”, Renana won first Prize at the Yellow Springs Chamber Music Competition, Ohio, and performed Beethoven Triple Concerto with Lansing Symphony. The trio was featured at “Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival”, the Banff Center, Canada, Swannanoa Chamber Music Festival, North Carolina and Saugatuck Music Festival, Michigan.
Commited to teaching and to the education of children in particular, Renana had been on the piano faculty of the Yehudi Menuhin Music School in the UK from 2008-2010. She currently teaches at 92nd Street Y, and Bard College Preparatory in NY.
A native of Israel, Renana started playing at the age of six, and soon after, garnered multiple awards and honors. She received scholarships from the America Israel Cultural Foundation, and the Jewish Foundation for the Education of Women.
She completed her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at Mannes College of Music, NY, where she studied with Richard Goode. In Israel, her teachers were pianists Natasha Tadson, Viktor Derevianko, and the Israeli composer Arie Shapira.
Renana became an American citizen in 2015 and makes her home in NYC. She also pursues her passion for Argentinian Tango, Jazz, languages, and poetry.