Cameron University’s Hyunsoon Whang, McMahon Endowed Chair and Professor of Music, will present “Nocturnes and Fantasies,” a piano recital, at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 21, in the Cameron University Theatre. Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for senior citizens, military and students. CU faculty, staff and students are admitted at no charge with CU-ID.
"I like the genre approach when building recital programs,” says Whang. “Historically speaking, both genres - the Nocturne and Fantasia - hold a prominent place in piano repertoire, and they are related in the sense that imagination seems to be the most important element in these compositions. On a personal note, I am working on learning and performing all 21 Chopin Nocturnes."
“Nocturnes and Fantasies" will consist of works by Chopin and Beethoven. The first half will be dedicated to five Chopin Nocturnes, including the beloved E-flat Major. After the intermission, Chopin's F minor Fantasie will be followed by Beethoven's celebrated "Moonlight Sonata” which Beethoven titled "Sonata quasi una fantasia."
Born in Seoul, Korea, Whang began her piano studies at the age of 4 and started playing public concerts at age 12. Since then, she has delighted audiences in hundreds of concerts across the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia. Critics have praised her as "the kind of player who appears to immerse her entire being in the music," and as one who has "always delivered with grace and beauty."
As a recitalist and a collaborator, she has performed at Se-Jong Cultural Center in Seoul, Suntory Recital Hall in Tokyo and Paul Hall in Lincoln Center. She has participated in the Aspen Music Festival, Ravinia Festival Master Classes, Canada's Victoria Music Festival and the Taos School of Music. She has appeared as a soloist with Leonard Slatkin, Joel Revzen, Miriam Burns and Nicholas Harsanyi. She was personally invited by Alexis Weissenberg to perform and record his surrealistic musical “Nostalgie” which was met with critical acclaim in Germany and France.
Her recent engagements have included solo recitals, chamber music concerts and master classes in California, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Utah and Reykjavik, Iceland. Her live videos from Drury University have been airing on PBS television stations throughout the Midwest. Whang serves on the Touring Artists Roster of the Oklahoma Arts Council and the Mid-America Arts Alliance's Artist Roster. In 2010, Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry presented her with the Governor's Arts in Education Award.
As an educator, Whang has nurtured and inspired generations of students of all ages. She has been on the faculty at Cameron University since 1992 and was named the McMahon Endowed Chair in Music in 2006. Her piano students have garnered top prizes at regional and national competitions and received scholarships and fellowships from prestigious institutions. She presents interactive recitals for public school children each year where she relates classical music to other subjects such as history, literature, science and environment. She has served as the faculty advisor for Cameron University's Asian Club and as president of Cameron University's Phi Kappa Phi Chapter. She has been inducted into the Faculty Hall of Fame by the Cameron University Alumni Association.
Whang studied at the North Carolina School of the Arts, the St. Louis Conservatory of Music, The Juilliard School, and earned a doctorate from Indiana University. She studied piano with Gyorgy Sebok, Michele Block, Joseph Kalichstein, Clifton Matthews, Jung-joo Oh and Soo-jung Shin, and she has studied the harpsichord with Maryse Carlin and chamber music with Michael Tree and Felix Galimir.
January 11, 2016