It is hard for one to imagine a person who majors in piano writing articles based on art for a newspaper. Kim Soo-hyun (Department of Piano, '11) has pursued her interests in both fields by not only majoring in piano, but also publishing serial articles in the Kyungnam Daily Newspaper. Through her activities which transcend borders, Kim works persistently to bring art closer to the public.
Kim as a pianist
Kim first started playing the piano when she was five years olds with her younger sister Kim So-yeon (Department of Piano, '10). From then on, the two sisters were both friends and rivals as future pianists. However, according to Kim, it was her younger sister who always came first in concours, due to her personal anxiety of going up on stage. She also added that such stage fright also had an impact when entering Hanyang University, which is why her younger sister entered the university one year earlier than Kim.
After entering Hanyang University, Kim had many opportunities to pursue her dream of becoming a pianist. Hanyang’s various facilities in the Music Department, such as the practice room and the music library, provided an ideal environment for Kim to nurture her interests. The meetings held with Professor Lee Dae-wook (Department of Piano) are still meaningful in her life. It was Professor Lee who helped Kim realize the importance of classical music and deeper study into the field.
According to Kim, the memories of her first concert never get old. Starting from renting the concert hall to designing the concert poster and pamphlet, everything was prepared by Kim herself. Although it required 7 hours of travel roundtrip, as the concert was held in Jeonju City, Kim devoted every minute of her time to preparing for the concert. The concert was meaningful in that it was devoted to her parents. It contained not only a solo by Kim, but also a duet with her younger sister.
Life as a music teacher
While pursuing her dream of becoming a pianist, Kim also found her interests in the academic field. She completed a course in academic profession, with the belief that her experiences as a teacher would be helpful in the future. For Kim, teaching students was difficult as she had to follow a particular class schedule and prepare tests for her students. Kim believed that her students becoming friendly to music was more important than simply learning music theories.
Providing various opportunities that allowed the students to listen to music in a more comfortable environment was Kim’s main concern as a music teacher. She came up with class agendas such as expressing emotions after listening to music and drawing cartoons of the history of popular music. Kim believed that having such experiences through the activities attracted the students' interests and enabled them to increase their enthusiasm about music. In addition, Kim learned that music can serve as a powerful tool in the process of interactions between people.
The Netherlands as another home
Although the Netherlands is not a popular country that most classic-majors go to study, Kim chose to go to the country based on her personal experiences in Europe. While traveling in Europe for three weeks after graduating from Hanyang University, Kim decided to go back and pursue her studies in the European nation. The fact that 80 percent of the Dutch use English, which would lighten her burden of having to learn a third language, convinced Kim to choose the country. In addition, her interest in the representative Dutch painters Van Gogh, Rembrandt, and Mondriaan were another important reason she chose the Netherlands as her destination.
Kim first started her pursuit in the field of arts due to her belief that collaborating art and music would help her gain a better understanding of the respective fields. She stated that “When researching about a particular artist, they were somehow related to the musicians who performed in a similar environment." In order to inform people of her findings in the Netherlands, Kim started to publish serial articles in the Kyungnam Daily Newspaper.
WIth the initial intention being to introducte the Netherlands to her readers, Kim now hopes that her writings make the Netherlands a place that one wishes to visit. As the Netherlands is a relatively uncommon destination for Korean tourists when compared to other countries such as France or England, Kim hopes that her writings help widen the opportunities for tourism in this country. According to Kim, “There are so many wonderful places in the Netherlands, yet tourists tend to simply stay in Amsterdam. However, other than Amsterdam, there are many other cities that have various attractions for traveling.”
Kim is currently developing social contents through which people can easily understand works of art and music. While preparing a tour program on The Van Gogh Museum and The Rijksmuseum for Korean tourists who travel to the Netherlands, Kim is expecting to gain more professionalism by pursuing studies in museology. Furthermore, she has the goal of publishing a book, in her own name, based upon her writings. Kim ended the interview by adding, “I hope that I can contribute to art's becoming closer to the public”.