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  • Aug. 26, 2008
  • PROGRAM UPDATE: Sung Replaces Conductor Edo de Waart For This Concert

    Van Cliburn Prize Winner Sa Chen Makes Her Bowl Debut in Schumann’s Piano Concerto

    TUESDAY, AUGUST 26, 2008, AT 8 PM

    Media Sponsor: Time Warner Cable

    European classics heat up the summer night at the Hollywood Bowl as conductor Shi-Yeon Sung, in her Hollywood Bowl debut, leads the Los Angeles Philharmonic in an all-German program, Tuesday, August 26, at 8 p.m. Rising star Sa Chen joins the orchestra, also in her Bowl debut, performing Schumann’s Piano Concerto, which was finished during one of the composer’s most creative periods. Sung replaces the originally scheduled conductor, Edo de Waart, who had to cancel due to illness. In addition to the Schumann piano concerto, the concert also features the prelude to Wagner’s Die Meistersinger and closes with Brahms’ dramatic Symphony No. 1.

    Considered one of the most exciting young conductors on the international scene, Korean conductor Shi-Yeon Sung has emerged from a string of great successes over the past seasons. She won first prize at the 2006 Sir Georg Solti International Conductors Competition. This was quickly followed by an invitation from James Levine and the Boston Symphony to become their new assistant conductor beginning in the 2007/08 season. Her most recent success occurred at the Bamberg Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition, where she achieved top prize in the April 2007 competition. Previous accolades included winning the 2004 conducting competition for the Conducting Forum of the German Music Council, and the 2004 Female Conductors’ Competition in Solingen, Germany.

    SHI-YEON SUNG made her Korean conducting debut opening the 2008 season for the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra at the Sejong Arts Center. This season she will return to Seoul to conduct numerous performances with the Seoul Philharmonic and will make her debut with the KBS orchestra conducting the Year End Gala 2008 for Music and Culture presented by the Daewon Cultural Foundation at the Seoul Arts Center. In the next season, following her critically acclaimed Tanglewood debut with the Boston Symphony this summer, she will make her subscription debuts with the Boston Symphony at Symphony Hall, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, Milwaukee Symphony, and the Elgin Symphony. She will also appear with the Heidelberg Philharmonische Orchester, the Philharmonisches Orchester Staatstheaters Cottbus, and the orchestra of the Royal Swedish Opera House. Recent conducting engagements have included the City of Daegu Symphony, Arnhem Philharmonic Orchestra, Bamberger Symphoniker, Frankfurter Museumsorchester, Helsingborgs Symfoniorkester, Nürnberger Symphoniker, Princeton Symphony Orchestra, Berliner Sinfonie-Orchester, the Berliner Symphoniker and other German orchestras. In 2002, Sung gave her formal conducting debut conducting Die Zauberflöte in Berlin followed by assisting posts in productions at the Theater Görlitz, Hans Otto Theater in Potsdam. She has since directed numerous opera projects. In her capacity as permanent guest conductor, Sung regularly directs the opening concert of the Summer Festival Kapfenburg (supported by DaimlerChrysler) and from February 2003 to February 2006, Sung was chief conductor of the Capella Academica, the symphony orchestra of the Humboldt University Berlin. In 2001, Sung received her Master’s Degree in Piano Performance at the University of the Arts (UDK) in Berlin, Germany as a student of László Simon and Erich Andreas. Prior to this, she studied with Eckart Heiligers in Zurich. Sung has participated in numerous master classes, with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Sergej Dorensky, among others. Born in 1975, in Pusan, South Korea, Shi-Yeon Sung began playing the piano at the age of 4. She took part in numerous youth competitions, winning various prizes, and gave her first solo concert at the age of 13.

    Crystal prize winner at the Twelfth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition (2005), SA CHEN, proclaimed “a brilliant pianist” by great pianist Emanuel Ax, has been delighting audiences in European countries, China, Japan and the U.S. Her first major performance was in 1996, when at the age of 16, she was seen live on BBC Television, competing in the final of the prestigious Leeds International Piano Competition, with Sir Simon Rattle conducting the City of Birmingham Symphony. The British public was captivated. Chen was born in Chongqing, China, and began her musical studies at the Sichuan Conservatory of Music and then at the Shenzhen School of Arts with Prof. Dan Zhaoyi. Following her success in Leeds in 1996, she was subsequently offered a scholarship at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London, where she has been studying with Prof. Joan Havill and obtained her master’s degree in performance. Since 2001, Chen also studied with Prof. Arie Vardi at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hannover. Major awards and honors began in 1994 for Chen, when she won first prize at the China International Piano Competition. Winning fourth prize in the Leeds International Piano Competition 1996 as the youngest contestant in the competition, marked the beginning of her international career. Chen was also awarded at the 14th International Chopin Piano Competition in October 2000, at which she claimed the Best Polonaise Performance Award as well as the Fourth Prize, overall. Her Crystal award-winning result at the Twelfth Cliburn Competition firmed up her reputation of one of the most outstanding pianists of China performing today. Her solo assignments have taken Chen to many of the European music centers plus concert halls in the U.S., Canada, Asia (incl. Hong Kong, Taiwan, Tokyo), Israel and Australia under the baton of celebrated conductors such as Semyon Bychkov, Sir Simon Rattle, Leonard Slatkin, James Conlon, Louis Lane, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Ilan Volkov, Kazimierz Kord, János Fürst, Bernhard Gueller, Muhai Tang, Long Yu, Jan Krenz, and Howard Griffiths. Chen’s debut disc Chopin Impression was released in 2003 on the JVC label while her second CD, featuring her prize-winning performances at the Cliburn Competition, was released in 2005 by harmonia mundi usa. She also appeared in two film documentaries about the 2005 Cliburn Competition which aired on PBS stations across the U.S. beginning October 2005 as well as via worldwide release. Ms. Chen was featured the debut edition of Gramophone magazine (Chinese edition) and a documentary about her produced by RTHK was telecast on Hong Kong satellite TV network in fall of 2006. On August 19, 2008 she performed in a special concert showcasing great pianists from East and West during the Beijing Olympics.

    One of the largest natural amphitheaters in the world, with a seating capacity of nearly 18,000, the HOLLYWOOD BOWL has been the summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic since its official opening in 1922, and in 1991 gave its name to the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, a resident ensemble that has filled a special niche in the musical life of Southern California. The 2004 season introduced audiences to a revitalized Hollywood Bowl, featuring a newly-constructed shell and stage and the addition of four stadium screens enhancing stage views in the venue. To this day, $1 buys a seat at the top of the Bowl for many of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's concerts. While the Bowl is best known for its sizzling summer nights, during the day California's youngest patrons enjoy "SummerSounds: Music for Kids at the Hollywood Bowl," the Southland's most popular summer arts festival for children, now in its 40th season. Attendance figures over the past several decades have soared: in 1980 the Bowl first topped the half-million mark and close to one million admissions have been recorded. In February 2008, the Hollywood Bowl was named Best Major Outdoor Concert Venue for the fourth year in a row at the 19th Annual Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. The Bowl's summer music festival has become as much a part of a Southern California summer as beaches and barbecues, the Dodgers, and Disneyland.


    Tuesday, August 26, 2008, AT 8 PM

    HOLLYWOOD BOWL, 2301 N. Highland Ave. in Hollywood


    SHI-YEON SUNG, conductor

    Sa Chen, piano

    Wagner Die Meistersinger Prelude

    Schumann Piano Concerto

    Brahms Symphony No. 1

    Media Sponsor: Time Warner Cable

    Tickets ($1 - $95) are on sale now at, at the Hollywood Bowl Box Office (Tuesday–Sunday, noon–6 p.m.), by phone 323.850.2000 or by calling Ticketmaster at 213.480.3232, and at all Ticketmaster outlets. Groups of 10 or more may be eligible for a 20% discount, subject to availability; call 323.850.2050 for further details.

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  • Contact:

    Lisa White, 213.972.3408,; For photos: 213.972.3034