Applauded by the Calgary Herald as “…talented, sensitive…brilliant,” JIJI is an adventurous artist on both acoustic and electric guitar, playing a wide range of music from traditional and contemporary classical to free improvisation. Her impeccable musicianship combined with compelling stage presence and fascinating repertoire earned the Korean guitarist First Prize at the 2016 Concert Artists Guild International Competition.
The Kansas City Star described JIJI as “A graceful and nuanced player,” adding that “…she presented an intimate, captivating performance” in reviewing her recent concerto debut appearance with Kansas City Symphony. A major highlight of JIJI’s 2018-19 season is her Carnegie Hall/Stern Auditorium debut as soloist with the award-winning New York Youth Symphony, performing the world premiere of a new concerto written for her by American composer Natalie Dietterich.
Featured NYC recitals this season include JIJI’s April 2019 Lincoln Center debut on the Great Performers series, preceded by 2018 Summer appearances at the Mostly Mozart Festival and the New York Guitar Seminar at Mannes. Other recitals include Grand Canyon Guitar Society and Arizona State University in Tempe, where JIJI joins the ASU Music school faculty as Assistant Professor of Guitar starting in fall 2018.
Currently sponsored by D'Addario Strings. JIJI’s performances have been featured on PBS (On Stage at Curtis series), NPR’s From the Top, WHYY-TV, FOX 4-TV, Munchies (the Vice Channel), The Not So Late
Show (Channel 6, Kansas), and Hong Kong broadcast station RTHK’s The Works. Her new EP recording, Underglow, was released in May 2018, featuring acoustic guitar music by Bach, Albeniz, Ginastera and Dyens, in addition to her own composition for electric guitar and electronics.
A passionate advocate of new music, JIJI has premiered a duo piece Talking Guitars by renowned composer,Paul Lansky, and as a recipient of the 2017 BMI commissioning award resulting from the CAG Competition, JIJI has commissioned Nina C. Young to write a new guitar piece scheduled for premiere during 2018-19. In addition, the American Composers Orchestra is commissioning a new guitar concerto by Hilary Purrington, to be premiered by JIJI in an upcoming season. She has premiered works by numerous emerging composers, including Gabriella Smith, Riho Maimets, Krists Auznieks, Gulli Björnsson, Andrew McIntosh, and Farnood HaghaniPour.
She also performs her own compositions, incorporating electronic media and acoustic music, and she recently worked as a composer with the Yale Repertory Theater, Yale Cabaret, and Yale school of Art. Her music is influenced by her regular activities as a DJ, where she highlights the electronic dance styles of happy hardcore and Berlin experimental electronica.
Recent highlights include a wide array of venues, including: Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, National Sawdust, Miller Theater, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, Purdue Convocations, Mass MOCA, Le Poisson Rouge, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Princeton Sound Kitchen, Virginia Arts Festival, Festival Napa Valley, 92 nd Street ‘Y’ and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Her recent tour in Hong Kong consisted of performances collaborating with a performance Artist, a traditional Chinese instrument ensemble, and an Erhu player in art galleries, clubs, and even on a moving trolley. As a chamber musician, she performed with members of Eighth Blackbird, members of one beat project, members of Bang on a Can All-Stars, Wild Up,
Tanglewood Chamber orchestra, The Industry, cellist Tessa Seymour, and the Aizuri and Argus Quartets.
Born in Seoul, South Korea, JIJI (Jiyeon Kim) began playing classical guitar at the age of nine, and was
accepted to the Korea National University of Arts at age fourteen. She attended the Cleveland Institute of Music for two years, studying with Jason Vieaux, and was accepted at the Curtis Institute of Music in 2011 as one of the first two guitarists in Curtis’ distinguished history. She graduated Curtis in 2015, as a student of Mr. Vieaux and David Starobin, and she recently earned her Master of Music degree from the Yale School of Music, studying with Benjamin Verdery. She is excited about her upcoming adventures as a new resident of Arizona, and in her spare time, she enjoys cooking and creating weird sounds on Ableton.
Photographer: Jóna Wedholm