[Season 2015-2016] Full Length Biography
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Praised for her “winning combination of passion, imagination, and integrity” (New York Concert Review) and her “thrilling blend of fury and finesse” (San Antonio Express-News), pianist YOUNG-AH TAK enjoys a remarkable career that has taken her throughout the United States, Canada, Austria, Germany, Italy, Korea, and Japan.
Young-Ah Tak made her New York City debut at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ Alice Tully Hall with the Juilliard Orchestra. Subsequently, she has appeared in the United States with the Roanoke, Imperial, Lansing, Venice, and North Arkansas symphony orchestras. She has appeared abroad with Filharmonia Pomorska (Poland), Oltenia Philharmonic (Romania) and, in Korea, with the Seongnam, Busan and Ulsan philharmonic orchestras and the Korean Symphony Orchestra. Other notable performances have been presented at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Kimmel Center’s Perelman Theater in Philadelphia, Jordan Hall in Boston, Columbia University, Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series in Chicago, Ravinia Festival, Music@Menlo, Michigan State University’s Wharton Center for Performing Arts, and The Banff Centre in Canada. She has also appeared at major concert halls and international music festivals in her native Korea, including those of Busan and Tongyeong. Her performances have been broadcast on WQXR (New York City), WMFT and LOOP (Chicago), WBJC (Baltimore), WCLV (Cleveland), CKWR (Ontario), and Korea’s KBS and Arte TV.
Active as a chamber musician, Young-Ah Tak has collaborated with violinist Robert Mann, cellist Bonnie Hampton, the Ma’alot Quintet, and members of The Florestan Trio. She is also a passionate advocate of contemporary music, and has performed at “Sequenza 21" and at the “Piano Century” concert series in New York City.
Young-Ah Tak has been awarded top prizes in numerous competitions, including: San Antonio International Piano Competition (also receiving the “Best Performance of a Classical Work” award), Italy’s Valsesia-Musica International Piano Competition, Korea’s Isang Yun International Music Competition, Hilton Head International Piano Competition, Missouri Southern International Piano Competition, and Germany’s Ettlingen International Piano Competition.
She received her training at The Juilliard School (BM), New England Conservatory (MM, GD), and The Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University (DMA), studying principally with Leon Fleisher, Russell Sherman, Yong Hi Moon, Wha Kyung Byun, and Martin Canin. Young-Ah Tak went on to become a faculty member of the Preparatory Division of The Peabody Institute. Currently, Ms. Tak is on the faculty of Eastern University in suburban Philadelphia, an Artistic Director of the Eastern University Piano Festival, and serves as an Artist-in-Residence at Southeastern University in Florida.
Young-Ah Tak’s debut recording of Judith Zaimont’s Wizards – Three Magic Masters was released by Albany Records to critical acclaim. Her newest CD - an album of Haydn, Schumann, Liszt and Kirchner - is available on MSR Classics.