Virtuoso pianist Yeol-Eum Son to perform Chopin Waltzes


BRUNSWICK, Maine – The Bowdoin International Music Festival’s final Upbeat! concert will feature the works of Chopin, Dvorák and Weber in an all-Romantic period program on Wednesday evening, Aug. 1.

In addition to faculty ensembles performing Dvorák’s String Quintet, Op. 97 and Weber’s Quintet for Clarinet and Strings, Op. 34, one of the Festival’s virtuoso piano students, Yeol-Eum Son, will perform three waltzes by Frederic Chopin.

Yeol-Eum Son was born in 1986 in Wonju, South Korea.

At age 16, she entered the Korean National University of Arts to continue her piano studies. At the age of 18, she recorded the complete Chopin Etudes (Op 10 and Op 25) for a Universal Music CD.

Son has performed in New York, Tokyo and with orchestras in Korea, Japan, among others. Among her prizes are first prize at the Oberlin International Piano Competition (1999), the 7th Ettlingen Piano Competition (2001) and the Viotti Competition (2002); third prize in the Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition (2005) and finalist in the 15th International Frederic Chopin Piano Competition (2005). She is studying at the Festival this summer with Arie Vardi, the teacher of renowned pianist Yefim Bronfman, among others.

Antonín Dvorák’s String Quintet was written during the summer of 1893, which he spent in Spillville, Iowa. His immensely popular American String Quartet and “New World Symphony” were written the same summer. Presenting the quintet are Bowdoin Festival faculty members Renée Jolles and Dennis Kim, violins; Michael Klotz, viola; and Yehuda Hanani, cello. Joining them to complete the quintet is viola fellow Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt.

Carl Maria von Weber’s Quintet will open the concert and will feature Avery Fisher Award-winning clarinetist Igor Begelman, with Sergiu Schwartz and a festival fellow to be announced on violins; Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt, viola; and Elizabeth Simkin, cello.

The Wednesday Upbeat! series features classical music in an informal setting and the programs often include conversations among artists, performers, and audience members. Upbeat! concerts take place at 7:30 p.m. in air-conditioned Crooker Theatre at Brunswick High School. Tickets are $20 for adults, $5 for students. Children are admitted free with an adult.

For concert information and tickets, call the festival box office at 207-725-3895 or visit

For photographs, contact Peter Simmons at [email protected]