Jaap van Zweden should give Seoul orchestra ‘unique sound

By Enid Tsui, Park Ji-won

Jaap van Zweden, the music overseer of the New York Philharmonic and Hong Kong Philharmonic Ensemble, will head Seoul after his agreement with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Symphony wraps up in 2024 and his other agreement with the New York Philharmonic finishes toward the finish of the 2023-24 season. The Dutch director has acknowledged the post of music overseer of the Seoul Philharmonic Ensemble (SPO), destined to be abandoned by Finnish maestro Osmo Vanska.

Declaring the arrangement on Sunday, the CEO of the Seoul Philharmonic, Sohn Eun-kyung, said van Zweden’s presence will “redesign” the symphony’s exhibitions and assist it with setting up a good foundation for itself as a “top notch ensemble.”

In Hong Kong, van Zweden, 61, has been credited with increasing expectations and lifting the worldwide profile of the city’s lead symphony, which in 2019 turned into the principal Asian ensemble to win Gramophone magazine’s “Symphony of the Year” grant.

Featuring the degree of South Korea’s social desire, Sohn added: “In Korea, K-culture, for example, K-pop, motion pictures and dramatizations have as of now [won over] the world, and its old style music is additionally standing out as the nation is the origin of many promising top notch craftsmen.”

Nah Sung-in, a traditional music pundit in South Korea, trusts van Zweden will assist the SPO with fostering a particular style, something Nah feels is genuinely necessary. The arrangement of the great profile director, who was once the most youthful concertmaster of the Regal Concertgebouw Ensemble when he was 19, was “emblematic” and mirrored the exclusive requirements of South Korea’s traditional music scene, Nah said.

“Jaap van Zweden, who filled in as a concertmaster and is knowledgeable about driving ensembles to foster their own varieties, is supposed to give the Seoul Philharmonic Symphony an evergreen and remarkable sound, or brand, which has been missing notwithstanding the SPO’s exceptionally talented exhibitions,” Nah said.

Van Zweden has been filling in as the music chief for the Hong Kong Philharmonic starting around 2012 and for the New York Philharmonic starting around 2018.

In any case, as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic and related measures, van Zweden has seldom been seen in Hong Kong beginning around 2020. He as of late returned after a yearlong nonappearance in anticipation of the symphony’s Sept. 9 2022-23 season opening show.

In 2021, he said in a meeting with the South China Morning Post that after 2023, he planned to eliminate global travel and invest more energy with his loved ones. “From ’24, ’25, my aim when I go to places, is to remain longer so I’m not going this way and that, to and fro.”

When the most generously compensated director in America when he was music head of the Dallas Ensemble Symphony (a position he left in 2018), van Zweden’s effect in New York was likewise diminished by the pandemic, which constrained the New York Philharmonic to drop north of 100 shows. His six-year residency as the ensemble’s music chief will be the most limited.
The Seoul Philharmonic Ensemble has had its own difficulties as of late. In 2015, the noticeable director, Chung Mung-whun, ventured down as music chief following 10 years, refering to the way that symphony artists had blamed the then-CEO for abuse. Vanska, who participated in 2020, likewise proposed in a meeting that his experience with the ensemble had not been completely good.

“I’ve learned numerous things during these two years, I’m going on my third year now. I accept that I have given whatever might be possible in these conditions. I might want to get an opportunity for another person to figure out how to function with this extraordinary symphony,” he told Van Magazine, a web-based traditional music magazine, adding that he would have rather not explained freely on the “conditions” referenced.

Two other driving ensembles in Seoul have set Western guides at their rudders as of late. In January, Finnish director Pietari Inkinen was named music head of KBS Ensemble, while Belgian director David Reiland assumed the job of imaginative chief with the as of late renamed Korean Public Ensemble Symphony simultaneously.

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