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Japanese Violinist Swanai Visits Korea on Nov. 14 and 15

Japanese Violinist Swanai Visits Korea on Nov. 14 and 15

Posted November. 12, 2002 23:07,   


In 1990, an 18-year-old young violinist stirred the established culture circle in Japan. The Julliard School student with big eyes and long hair emerged as a diva as she won special Chaikovskii award.

Now turning 30 years old, Swanai Akiko is set to make her first visit to Korea. She will play Sibelius violin D flat concerto with KBS Orchestra, which will be led by French conductor Jean Claude Kajadesh.

She will make her first debut before Korean audience at 7:00 p.m. on Nov. 14 and 15 at KBS Hall and Concert Hall of Seoul Arts Center respectively.

Since the mid 1990s, she released four albums but met with cold reception in Korea. Her relative obscurity here was partly due to Koreans’ affection towards Jang Young-joo. And many doubted whether her performance was hyped. It was widely speculated that her winning Chaikovskii award was a result of a well-organized operation by Japan’s global leading musical instrument makers.

Her works on Dvorak and Bruch failed to improve her image in Korea as well. Critics battered her with such remarks as `uncharacteristic,` and `like a doll without expressions.`

Regardless of the harsh critics, however, she continued to build her career, touring with Europe Chamber Orchestra and working with the world’s renowned conductors like Charles Duttoia, Vladimir Ashikansi and Jung Myung-hoon.

“She was once a strong candidate to princess of Japan,” said her peers who used to study together at Julliard. For the reason she didn’t make it, they said it was because she once ran away from home and her farther, a leading businessman in Japan.

Tickets are sold for 10,000 won to 50,000 won. For further inquiry, call 02-781-2242

Yoon-Jong Yoo gustav@donga.com