Peace Concerts to Commemorate Isang Yun’s Birthday
By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
From The Korea Times - 09-06-2006
A series of 'world peace' concerts commemorating the 89th birthday of the late Korean composer Yun Isang will be held in Korea, Japan, Germany and North Korea over the next two months.
The Isang Yun World Peace Concert 2006, organized by the Isang Yun Peace Foundation, will kick off at the Tokyo Arts University, Tokyo, Japan on Sept.15. The concert will feature a mix of Yun's musical compositions and traditional Korean music.
Yun's symphonies, which he created in the 1980s, characterized his desire for harmony, peace and reconciliation on the Korean Peninsula.
The Isang Yun Orchestral Music Night will be held at the Seoul Arts Center on Sept. 19. It will feature three musical pieces by Yun, which were written in 1987; as well as music by Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich.
Performing at the Seoul concert are Seoul Baroque Chamber Orchestra and Japanese oboe player Satoki Aoyama, who is currently the principal oboist at the NHK-Symphony Orchestra
Two concerts will be held in Germany, one at the St. Matthaus Church, Berlin on Oct.14 and the other at the Karlorfoff Chantroom, Munich on Oct. 16. It will feature the Isang Yun Berlin Ensemble, which is composed of Marton Vegh on flute, Johanna Reithmayer on harp, Daniela Jung on violin and Wenshin Yang on cello.
The last concert will be held on Oct. 20 at the Yun Isang Music Hall, Pyongyang.
Yun was born on Sept. 17, 1917, near the southeastern seaport Tongyong. He later moved to Germany and became a respected composer. His music gained recognition because of its blend of Taoist and Buddhism with Western-style music.
He was also known as a victim of South Korea's 'red baiting'. After his visit to North Korea in 1963, Yun was abducted from West Berlin and brought to Seoul under the authoritarian government of former President Park Chung-hee in June 1967. He was tortured and charged with high treason, after falsely admitting he was a spy for North Korea.
Yun was sentenced to life imprisonment, but was released in 1969 after protests from the international community. He became a naturalized German citizen in 1971 and died on November 3, 1995 in Berlin.