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The Vision of Korean Choral Music in Ann Arbor, MI

Speaker: Hyowon Woo, Composer-In-Residence, Incheon City Chorale

Host Department: Nam Center for Korean Studies

Date: 04/02/2014Time: 4:00 PM

Location: International Institute-Room 1636


An introduction and overview of Korean choral works composed by Woo, the composer will discuss the current state of choral work performances in Korea and the globalization and modernization of Korean choral music and performance.

A selection of Hyo Won Woo’s work will be featured in a

March 31 concert

conducted by Eugene Rogers and
Jonathan King


with Professors James Kibbie, organ and
Joseph Gramley, percussion.


Since making her debut as composer for the Seoul Ladies Singers in 1996, Hyo Won Woo has emerged as one of the most signifiant representatives of the choral genre. Her works incorporate Korean traditional musical elements that speaks to an international audience. Her wide ranging repertoire includes revisions of the Latin mass and playful spatial music and arrangements examining wordless human encounters.

Since 1999 Ms. Woo has been the resident composer for the Incheon City Chorale under the direction of Hakwon Yoo. Their partnership has led to ideas creating a new path for choral music in Korea. Foremost works from their collaborations are Moses, a path-breaking departure for Korean oratorio, Choral Pan-so-ri “Sugung-ga” and some shorter works including Gloria. Woo’s works have been performed internationally by top level ensembles such as the World Vision International Children’s Choir Festival, Niigata Asian Culture Festival Choir, the Asian Youth Choir, and the World Youth Choir sponsored by the International Federation for Choral Music. The Batvia Madrigal singers earned a top prize in the 2003 Marktoberdorf Choral Festival in Germany with a performance of Gloria. This work has also been sung by the A Cappella Choir of the University of North Texas, the Victoria Chorale in Singapore, Los Angeles Master Chorale (2011) and the Concordia College Choir (2002). Other pieces such as ME-NA-RI (2005) and Pal-So-Seong (2008) were met with great acclaim at the 2009 American Choral Directors Association national conference and at Polyfolia: 4th World Showcase and Marketplace for Choral Singing in Saint-Lo, France as performed by Incheon City Chorale.

In 2009, IFCM recognized her as a representative of Asian Composers in its journal, “Eastern Lights.” As a Korean composer, she  continues to advocate and mentor talented young composers through her teaching positions at the Seoul Theological Seminary and the Chorus Center Academy in Incheon. (Biography by Yoonchung Chang).

This event is co-sponsored by the School of Music, Theater & Dance.

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