J.Y. Song (pianist)

Since her Lincoln Center recital debut in 1996 and her nomination as 1994 Pro Piano Artist of the Year, J.Y. Song has established herself as a musician with broad and idiosyncratic musical tastes. Critic Harris Goldsmith has noted her "truly astounding technical and imaginative resources," and has described her performances as "tigerishly intense" and "exquisite.” She recently gave the Mexican premiere of the Concerto for piano and orchestra by Clara Schumann, on four days notice.

J.Y. Song’s recordings on the Pro Piano label have received rave reviews in international publications. Her recording of Debussy Etudes received a Diapason d’Or, and was designated a “Desert Island Selection” by Gramophone’s International Piano Quarterly. Billboard described the same record as a "gem," and In Tune remarked "besides sheer technique, Song displays magnificent intellect in all her mood painting. Piano fans, ahoy!" J.Y. Song’s 2000 release, “...and that is death,” featuring piano music by Liszt and Busoni, was similarly lauded in the press, with Fanfare spoke of the “the sheer thrill of her playing.”

In addition to exploring traditional repertoire, J.Y. Song has been an enthusiastic supporter of new music, recording works by the Argentinean composer Ezequiel Viñao and the Taiwanese composer Jiang Wen Ye. Excerpts from this last CD were used by the celebrated film director Hou Hsiao-Hsien in his movie Cafe Lumière, which was shown at the 2004 Venice and New York Film Festivals, amongst others.

Numerous awards include Juilliard’s highest award to a pianist, the Petschek Award, the first ever $25,000 Christel Award in 1999, and the Pro Musicis International Award. J.Y. Song has performed at the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall, the Kennedy Center and the National Gallery in Washington D.C., the Théâtre de l’Athénée in Paris, Piano aux Jacobins in Toulouse, the Colburn Center in Los Angeles, and the Taipei National Concert Hall in Taiwan. Exploring new media of expression, J.Y. Song was featured in an innovative music video of her performance of Liszt’s Totentanz.

Born in Taiwan and raised in Switzerland, J.Y. Song studied at the Conservatoire de Genève and the Conservatoire de Lausanne with Alexei Golovine and Jean-François Antonioli. She later attended Stanford University, graduating with distinction and honors with a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology and Immunology as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Music. While conducting research on malaria and co-authoring a paper which appeared in Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology, J.Y. Song received numerous awards from Stanford, including the Robert Golden Medal and the prestigious Sudler Prize for outstanding achievement in the creative arts.

Currently on the piano faculty and the Artistic Advisor for Chamber Music at Mannes College of Music in New York, J.Y. Song holds a D.M.A. from The Juilliard School, where she studied with Jerome Lowenthal. From 2002-2005, she was the director of the European American Musical Alliance Summer Piano Program in Paris. She is now the artistic director of the Classics Abroad Paris Piano Program, at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris.


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