YoungWoo Yoo (Seoul, South Korea) began her classical composition studies at the age of 15 and earned many prizes in several international and national competitions, including first place in the ValTidone International Music Competition – Edigio Carella Composition Competition and second prize in the Orchestra Division – Student Category of the American Prize competition. Most recently, her work has been chosen for inclusion in ABLAZE Records Orchestral Masters. Her works have been performed in Italy, France, the Netherlands, Albania, Greece, the Czech Republic, Austria, Australia, Singapore, Ukraine, the UK, the US, and South Korea. Yoo holds a DMA degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she studied with Sever Tipei. She holds a Master of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with J. Mark Stambaugh, and a Bachelor of Music degree from Ewha Womans University.
Hwesang, Korean for ‘reminiscence’, is a piece dedicated to my recently deceased paternal grandfather. His life always inspired me as I was growing up. While I was fortunate to be brought up in circumstances of plenty and during a time of relative stability, my grandfather grew up poor during the Japanese occupation of Korea and, upon reaching adulthood, was sent away as a slave to Osaka, Japan. I wrote this piece as a tribute to the memory of his courageous life, capturing the trials and tribulations from the stories that my grandmother told me in the texture and timbre of my music, where the challenges he faced eventually laid the foundations for his family’s future security and success.