April 30, 2018
Pacific Symphony Appoints New Concertmaster
NaYoung Lee

Korean-born Dennis Kim has served as concertmaster with leading orchestras on four continents 

ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA (April 30, 2018) — Music Director Carl St.Clair today named Dennis Kim as Pacific Symphony’s new concertmaster. Mr. Kim officially assumes the Eleanor and Michael Gordon Concertmaster Chair in September for the orchestra’s 40th anniversary season. As concertmaster-designate, he will be featured in four performances June 14-17, playing the extensive solos in Strauss’ “A Hero’s Life.”

“In Dennis Kim, I welcome a brilliant violinist, consummate musician and a dedicated musical partner,” said Music Director Carl St.Clair. “As one who has been concertmaster of leading international orchestras, he is just the right artist to lead Pacific Symphony and its wonderful musicians toward all our musical aspirations.”

During the 2017-18 season, Mr. Kim served as concertmaster for Pacific Symphony’s series of three concerts at SOKA University in Aliso Viejo — concluding in April with a sold-out performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9.

A graduate of the Curtis Institute and the Yale School of Music, Mr. Kim is currently the concertmaster of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra in New York.

Before his time in Buffalo, Mr. Kim spent more than 10 years leading orchestras in Asia and Europe. He was first appointed concertmaster of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra at the age of 22. He then served as the youngest concertmaster in the history of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, before going on to lead the Seoul and Tampere (Finland) philharmonic orchestras.

“I am excited and honored to take this important position with Pacific Symphony,” said Mr. Kim. “When Carl and I first worked together, there was an instant spark and both of us knew there was a special chemistry in our music making.”

Pacific Symphony President John Forsyte said “Dennis is such a great match for Carl’s passionate approach to music making. He possesses experience with such a wide range of orchestral, solo and chamber repertoire. We welcome him and his family to Orange County and wish him a long and artistically rewarding tenure.”

Next season, Mr. Kim will be featured in Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante (Sept. 27-29), Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade” (Jan. 31-Feb. 2, 2019) and in the Symphony’s Café Ludwig chamber concerts (Oct. 14Feb. 24, 2019 and May 19, 2019).

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About Dennis Kim

Dennis Kim is the new concertmaster of Pacific Symphony. A citizen of the world, Mr. Kim was born in Korea, raised in Canada and educated in the United States. He has spent more than a decade leading orchestras in the United States, Europe and Asia. Most recently, he was concertmaster of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra in New York. He was first appointed concertmaster of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra at the age of 22. He then served as the youngest concertmaster in the history of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, before going on to lead the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra and the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra in Finland.

As guest concertmaster, Mr. Kim has performed on four continents, leading the BBC Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre National de Lille, KBS Symphony Orchestra, Montpelier Symphony Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Western Australia Symphony Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra of Navarra. He served as guest concertmaster with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra on their 10-city tour of the United Kingdom and led the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra in their BBC Proms debut in 2014.

After making his solo debut at the age of 14 with the Toronto Philharmonic Orchestra, Mr. Kim has gone on to perform as a soloist with many of the most important orchestras in China and Korea. Highlights include performing on 10 hours’ notice to replace an ailing William Preucil, performing Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons” 20 times in one week and touring Japan with the Busan Philharmonic in 2008. During his tenure as concertmaster with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, he was featured annually as a soloist. Over the last two seasons, he was a guest soloist with the Lebanon Philharmonic Orchestra and the Orchestra NOW, with repertoire ranging from Mozart and Haydn to Glass and Penderecki. Future engagements include those with the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.

A dedicated teacher, Mr. Kim is currently on the faculty at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Canada’s PRISMA festival and the Interlochen Center for the Arts as Valade Concertmaster in the World Youth Symphony Orchestra summer program. He has also been on the faculty of the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, Korean National University of the Arts, Yonsei University, Tampere Conservatory and the Bowdoin International Music Festival, Atlantic Music Festival and Suolahti International Music Festival. His students have been accepted to the Curtis Institute of Music, Colburn School, Juilliard School, Peabody Conservatory and the Queen Elizabeth College of Music and play in orchestras around the world.

A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and Yale School of Music, Mr. Kim's teachers include Jaime Laredo, Aaron Rosand, Peter Oundjian, Paul Kantor, Victor Danchenko and Yumi Ninomiya Scott.

He plays the 1701 ex-Dushkin Stradivarius, on permanent loan from a generous donor.

About Pacific Symphony

Led by Music Director Carl St.Clair since 1990, Pacific Symphony has been the resident orchestra of Orange County’s Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall for more than a decade. Currently in its 39th season, the symphony is the largest orchestra formed in the United States in the last 50 years. It is not only a fixture of musical life in Southern California, but also recognized as an outstanding ensemble making strides on both the national and international scene.

In April, Pacific Symphony made its debut at Carnegie Hall, performing by invitation as part of a year-long celebration of composer Philip Glass’ 80th birthday. In May, the Symphony will tour five cities in China, performing with superstar violinist Pinchas Zukerman. In Orange County, the orchestra presents more than 100 concerts and events each year, as well as a rich array of education and community engagement programs, reaching more than 300,000 residents of all ages.

The Symphony offers repertoire that ranges from the great orchestral masterworks to music from today’s most prominent composers. Seven seasons ago, the Symphony launched the highly successful opera initiative “Symphonic Voices,” which continued in February 2018 with Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.” It also offers a popular pops season, enhanced by state-of-the-art video and sound, led by Principal Pops Conductor Richard Kaufman. Each symphony season also includes Café Ludwig, a chamber music series; an educational Family Musical Mornings series; and Sunday Casual Connections, an orchestral matinee series that offers rich explorations of selected works led by Mr. St.Clair.

Pacific Symphony’s discography comprises 15 recordings, which feature 20th- and 21st-century music by American composers, including William Bolcom, John Corigliano and Richard Danielpour. In 2012 for Naxos, Mr. St.Clair and the orchestra recorded Philip Glass’ “The Passion of Ramakrishna,” a Pacific Symphony commission. The Symphony has also recorded for Harmonia Mundi, Koch International Classics, Reference Recordings and Sony Classical, among other labels.

Pacific Symphony has been recognized with multiple ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming and included among the country’s five most innovative orchestras by the League of American Orchestras. The Symphony’s education and community engagement activities have also been recognized by the League as well as the National Endowment for the Arts.

 

Program Change Notice
Pacific Symphony announces program changes for its concerts in June:


A HERO’S LIFE
ThursdayFriday and Saturday, June 14-16, 8 p.m.
Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, Costa Mesa

Carl St.Clair, conductor
Anne Akiko Meyers, violin

GLINKA:  Overture to “Ruslan and Ludmilla”
LAURIDSEN: O Magnum Mysterium
RAVEL:  Tzigane
BERNSTEIN:  “Somewhere” from “West Side Story” 
STRAUSS:  A Hero’s Life*

*Featuring Concertmaster-Designate Dennis Kim

Tickets: $25-$126  (Box Circle: $196-$206)
Online: PacificSymphony.org
Call: (714) 755-5799
 

EIN HELDENLEBEN
Sunday, June 17, 3 p.m.
Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, Costa Mesa

Carl St.Clair, conductor
Anne Akiko Meyers, violin

LAURIDSEN:  O Magnum Mysterium
RAVEL:  Tzigane
STRAUSS:  A Hero’s Life*

*Featuring Concertmaster-Designate Dennis Kim

Tickets: $25-$89  (Box Circle: $99)
Online: PacificSymphony.org
Call: (714) 755-5799

Press contacts:

Shuman Associates | Lisa Jaehnig
ljaehnig@shumanassociates.net | (212) 315-1300

Pacific Symphony | Jean Oelrich, Director of Marketing and Communications
joelrich@pacificsymphony.org | (714) 876-2380

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