Yunchan Lim: Interview with The Times on March 20, 2024

Yunchan Lim's Interview with The Times on March 20, 2024 #yunchanlim #interview #thetimes #chopin #etude #richardmorrison #rachmaninov #rachmaninoff #rachmaninov #pianoconcerto #horowitz #wigmorehall #minsoosohn #classical #music #art #classic #gallery #Europe

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Today’s Classic Gallery introduces an article about Yunchan Lim featured in The  Times, a renowned British newspaper, while anticipating the upcoming release  of Yunchan Lim's complete Chopin Etudes. The Times, dated March 20th, introduced  Yunchan Lim with the headline "Forget K-pop - South Korea's new superstar is piano  prodigy." The article mainly covers a candid discussion between the 18-year-old  prodigious pianist Yunchan Lim, who gained worldwide fame through the Van Cliburn  Competition
, and music critic Richard Morrison. Richard Morrison has served as a  prominent classical music critic for The Times in the UK. He's acclaimed  for his insightful columns. Morrison, while covering the 2011 Tchaikovsky  Competition in Russia, asserted, "The claim that Korean musicians lack  emotion despite their excellent technique is no longer valid. The new generation from Korea  possesses both technical prowess and passion." Upon a friend's recommendation, Morrison  listened to Yunchan Lim's
winning performance of Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3 at the  Van Cliburn Competition. His friend remarked, "It's as Vladimir Horowitz has come back  to life, only playing all the right notes." Morrison was astonished upon hearing Lim's  rendition of Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 3 because despite being only 18 years  old, Lim's performance rivaled that of Horowitz in both technical precision and  emotional depth. Horowitz's performance is known for its technical mastery, rich emotional 
expression, and profound interpretative insight. In 2023, Morrison attended Yunchan Lim's  debut performance at London's Wigmore Hall, where he praised Lim's performance not only  for its excellence but also for its profound and transcendent quality, surpassing age. This  indicates that Lim's performance was not only outstanding but also artistically profound and  meaningful, transcending age and experience. During his conversation with Morrison,  Yunchan Lim mentioned two important teachings f
rom his mentor Minsoo  Sohn: First, “if you have talent, you also have a responsibility to practice hard  and play to the best of your ability.“ Second, ”to learn to engage your imagination when you  are playing." These teachings likely provided Lim with crucial principles for developing both  expertise and artistry in his performances. In response to Morrison's question about  challenging pieces, Yunchan Lim mentioned many, but particularly recounted spending an  entire day on just four bars of
the first movement of Schubert's Piano Sonata No. 14  in A minor. Schubert's Sonata is known to pose technical and emotional challenges for  performers. Lim's struggle with a section of this piece demonstrates his dedication to  striving for a very high level of performance. Yunchan Lim emphasized that he was influenced  by not only his teacher Minsoo Sohn but also Russian pianists like Horowitz, Maria Yudina,  and Sofronitsky. He highlighted, “they lived through very difficult times, felt the
pain of  all that, and expressed it clearly in how they played. Compared with many of today’s pianists,  these people had such distinctive voice." Maria Yudina and Sofronitsky were figures who resisted  Stalin's regime and were respected within Russia but less known outside. These individuals  incorporated reflections of the socio-political contexts of their time into their performances,  creating unique artistic voices. This underscores Lim's emphasis on conveying societal messages  through art
and valuing artistic integrity. Yunchan Lim expressed little interest  in his own fame, the music business, or social media activities. Regarding concerns  about loneliness, he emphasized, "I believe that isolation is the secret to achieving the highest  state of performance, and I still have a long way to go on my musical journey, and that requires  sacrifice and discipline.“ This highlights Lim's dedication to music, willing to endure  isolation and sacrifice for his artistic goals. Through t
his article, we can see that  Yunchan Lim's musical activities and story are being recognized and appreciated  internationally. We hope that Lim's musical achievements will become even more  widely known and that his artistic talent will deeply move even more people. This  concludes today's Classic Gallery. Thank you.