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Playing Korean Sanjo on the Violin

August 29, 2023

On Tuesday, October 3, 2023, at 8:00pm PT, Professor and Violinist Soh-Hyun Park Altino will come to the University of Washington to premiere her adaptation of Kim Ilgu School of Ajaeng Sanjo, Long Sanjo, for violin. Accompanied by changgu player Junho Jeong, Dr. Park Altino’s performance will be hosted in the UW School of Music’s Brechemin Auditorium.

The performance will be prefaced by a brief lecture from Dr. Park Altino, providing additional context and understanding of the sanjo form.

Admission is free; however, space is limited, and those without tickets may be denied entry at the door. Seating is first come, first serve. Doors open at 7:45pm PT.

Click here or follow the QR code below to claim tickets:

What is Sanjo?

Sanjo is a genre of Korean traditional folk art music for a solo melodic instrument such as the zither kayagŭm or flute taegŭm, accompanied by an hourglass-shaped drum called changguSanjo consists of several movements of increasing speed built on the unique Korean rhythmic patterns called changdan. The solo instrument plays dramatic and expressive melodic phrases that draw from the inflections of spoken Korean that are also characteristic of p’ansori singing.

Soh-Hyun Park Altino

Although a native of Korea, violinist Soh-Hyun Park Altino crossed paths with traditional Korean music only in 2019 while investigating distinctive musical elements in Sanjo for Violin and Piano (1955) by La Un-Yung (1922-1993), her maternal grandfather. Since then, supported by various research grants, she has pursued a new line of study of interpreting traditional ajaeng sanjo on the Western violin. In addition to studying extensively with traditional musicians in Korea, she has trained on the Kim Ilgu School of Ajaeng Sanjo with the composer-performer Kim Ilgu, Holder of National Important Intangible Cultural Property. This lecture and world premiere are made possible by the 2023 Korean Studies Grant of the Academy of Korean Studies and the Faculty Global Research Award of the Wheaton College.

Soh-Hyun came to the U.S. at age sixteen in pursuit of better musical educational opportunities and earned her bachelor’s, master’s, and the Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in violin performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music under the tutelage of Donald Weilerstein. Highly regarded as a gifted teacher and a versatile performer of solo and chamber music, Soh-Hyun taught at the University of Memphis and the University of Wisconsin-Madison prior to her current appointment as Associate Professor of Music at Wheaton College in Illinois.


This event is made possible by the Academy of Korean Studies, Wheaton College, UW’s Center for Korea Studies, the UW School of Music, and our other venue partners in D.C., Michigan, and Ohio.