Mainly associated with performances at Paris’s pre-war artist salons, Reynaldo Hahn’s original works for piano include a good number of short character pieces that exude charm. Hahn composed his magnum opus in this genre, the “53 poèmes pour piano” collectively titled Le Rossignol Éperdu, consisting of four individual suites: I. Premiere, II. Orient, III. Carnet de Voyage and IV. Versailles. Some English translations render the title as the “bewildered” Nightingale, yet the Larousse dictionary also defines “éperdu” as “to be felt acutely, passionately.” Hahn himself only fleetingly describes the cycle in a letter to Proust, indicating that he had composed the pieces with “larmes rentrées,” translating as “repressed tears.”
Listeners coming to this exquisite body of work for the first time may initially find Hahn’s attractive if modestly deployed keyboard writing either recalling or foreshadowing other composers: The sensuous, arching phrases typifying early Scriabin preludes, or the sparse lyricism of late Liszt. Faure’s subtle harmonic palette sometimes casts a benign shadow, as does the effortless melodic fluidity of Massenet. One also can gleam Satie at his brash and ironic, or the delicate balance of Mompou’s piano miniatures.
Praised for her “flowing tones, poetic phrasing and heavenly singing melodies” (Cincinnati Inquirer), and “musical imagination and feel for complex textures that drew vivid images” (Washington Post), South Korean pianist Yoonie Han has won top prizes in distinguished international competitions and the highest accolades for her poetic performances in major concert halls in the U.S. and around the world.
in 2009, Yoonie Han was honored with the Gawon Music Award as the “most brilliant pianist aged 17 to 31 of any nationality who possesses the most promising potential for global prominence.” She is the first-prize winner of the Washington International Piano Competition, Fulbright Concerto Competition, World Piano Competition, Kosciuszko Chopin Competition, Juilliard’s Gina Bachauer Piano Competition, Juilliard’s Frederich Nordmann Piano Competition, Music Teachers’ National Association Piano Competition, and has garnered major prizes at the Helsinki Maj Lind International Piano Competition, Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli Prize, Concorso Pianistico Ettore Pozzoli Internaziole, Valencia-Paterna International Piano Competition, and Recontre International Piano Competitions. Following her 2001 grand-prize award in the Korea National Music Competition, the Korean Ministry of Culture named her its “Most Promising Young Artist.” She is the recipient of “Brava!” award given by the Italian Academy Foundation, as well as an award from London Keyboard Trust.
Having made her solo debut with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra at Seoul Arts Center at age 13, Ms. Han has since performed with the Berliner Symphoniker, Buffalo Philharmonic, Helsinki Philharmonic, Houston Symphony, Banff Festival Orchestra, Santa Cruz Symphony, Artosphere Festival Orchestra, I Pomeriggi Musicali di Milan, Gangnam Symphony Orchestra of Korea, Presidential Symphony Orchestra of Turkey, New Jersey Festival Orchestra, New Amsterdam Orchestra, Philharmonic of Southern New Jersey, and Juilliard Symphony Orchestra. She has played at such celebrated venues as at Berlin Philharmonie, Concertgebouw, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Frick Collection, Symphony Space, Tanglewood Festival, Bergamo Festival in Italy, Salle Cortot in Paris, and SeJong Performing Arts Center in Korea. In 2012-13, with the supports from Fulbright Foundation, she toured major Steinway Halls in the U.S. and Europe. Her first album, ‘Love and Longing’ on Steinway Records was “Album of the week” on WQXR and made the Top 21 on the Billboard Classical Chart. Her second album, “Goyescas,” also on Steinway Records, was released to mark the 150th anniversary of birth of the composer, Enrique Granados. Her third album with Steinway Records in 2019 presents the complete “Le Rossignol Eperdu” by Reynaldo Hahn.
Ms. Han received her Bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music, her Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School, and her Doctorate at SUNY Stony Brook.
She was an Assistant Professor of Piano and Chamber Music and Artistic Events Coordinator at Bilkent University in Turkey in 2015-2018. She is the founder and Artistic Director of the Bilkent International Piano Festival and Steinway & Sons Competition in Turkey. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Piano at Hong Kong Baptist University.
Yoonie Han is a Steinway Concert & Recording Artist