Kun Woo Paik

Kun Woo Paik is greatly admired for his passionate and virtuosic playing . His extensive repertoire ranges from Bach to Pendereski. Numerous recordings include Scriabin, Liszt, complete Rachmaninov’s Piano Concertos and “Rhapsody on a theme by Paganini” (under Vladimir Fedoseyev for BMG).  His Prokofiev Piano Concertos received both the “Diapason d’or” and “Nouvelle Academie du disque” Awards.

Kun Woo Paik at the Singapore International Piano Festival

06 Jun 2014

Kun Woo plays an all Schubert recital at the Singapore International Piano Festival on 26th June in the wonderful School of Arts Concert Hall.

"Paik's sense of drama, his wit, mastery of...

Kun Woo Paik releases Brahms solo piano works including Intermezzi and Capriccios on Deutsche Grammophon

23 Jan 2012

Kun Woo Paik has released a new CD on the Deutsche Grammophon label featuring Brahms solo piano works including Intermezzi and Capriccios. For more information, please...

Kun Woo Paik is awarded Order of Merit

03 Dec 2010

Kun Woo Paik has been awarded the Eun-gwan (Silver Crown) Order of Cultural Merit from the Culture Ministry of Korea, the nation’s second-highest honour for contributions to culture.  At...

Kun Woo Paik, Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic

04 Nov 2010

Kun Woo Paik this month performs Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No 3 with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Zubin Mehta.

NEW SIGNING: Pianist Kun Woo Paik.

02 Jun 2010

Van Walsum Management is delighted to announce the signing for worldwide management of pianist Kun Woo Paik.

Described by Gramophone as 'a player of consummate artistry, great tonal...

“A spellbinding hour of Schubert. Paik was rock-steady throughout and unerring in his delivery. More importantly, the inner soul of Schubert’s tormented and conflicted life was being laid bare The rippling filigree of Impromptu Op.90 No.4 was a concession for understated brilliance, while a most contemplative Musical Moment closed the evening in sublime reticence. Paik did not elect to play an encore, and why should he? The Schubertian hour of catharsis was so complete in itself that further comment would seem unnecessary, even superfluous.”

Straits Times (21st Singapore International Piano Festival) - Jun 2014

“Kun Woo Paik has a deep feeling for long, singing line, his control of rubato is masterly and the sheet sound that he draws from a Steinway is ravishing.”

Gramophone (Fauré: Piano Music, Decca)

“A first instalment of the complete Beethoven piano sonatas played by Kun-Woo Paik centres on the hyperactive “middle period” work. Paik’s sense of drama (the Waldstein), his wit (Op. 31/1 & 3)  mastery of nuance (Op. 31/3), thoughtfully weighted chords (Op. 78 and 54) and fleet-fingered virtuosity (the Appassionata’s finale), all are remarkable.”

The Independent (Beethoven Piano Sonatas, Decca)

“In speed, fluency, articulative powers and stamina, he meets the highest international standards. In the ability, through control of legato, dynamics and tone-differentiation, to make the instrument appear to sing, he recalls standards that have become historical.”

The Los Angeles Times

“His piano sings, paints, and describes the rise and fall of the wind. But whatever the mood, there is always this precision and attention to detail which draws the audience into the depth of the music.”

The New York Times

“...a player of consummate artistry, great tonal finesse and elegance.”


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Kun Woo Paik is greatly admired for his passionate and virtuosic playing . Born in Seoul, Kun Woo Paik’s first concert was at the age of ten performing Grieg’s Piano Concerto with the Korean National Orchestra. At the age of fifteen, Kun Woo Paik moved to New York to study with Rosina Lhevinne at the Julliard School and with Ilona Kabos in London.  Paik is the winner of the Naumburg award and Gold Medallist at the Busoni International Piano Competitions.  His international career took off following his first New York appearance, in which he performed complete piano works by Maurice Ravel at the Lincoln Center, and his orchestral debut at the Carnegie Hall.

In 1974, Paik made his European debuts with three consecutive recitals at the Wigmore Hall, London, followed in 1975 by a recital in Berlin’s Philharmonie. Since then he has closely collaborated with conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Mariss Jansons, Long Yu, Sir.Neville Marriner, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Jiří Bĕlohlávek, Dmitri Kitaenko, James Conlon, John Nelson, Eliahu Inbal and Antoni Wit, and performed with orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic, St Petersburg Philharmonic, London Symphony, BBC Symphony, Orchestre de Paris, Berlin Symphony, Hungarian National, Oslo Philharmonic, Rotterdam and Warsaw Philharmonic. He is also performed at festivals including Berliner Festwochen, Aix-en-Provence, La Roque d'Anthéron, Ravinia, Mostly Mozart, Colmar, Montreux, Dubrovnik, Aldeburgh and Moscow Easter Festival. He was the first Korean artist to be officially invited by the Chinese government in October 2000.

Recent and upcoming concerts include performances with Zubin Mehta and Israel Philharmonic, Paavo Järvi and Orchestre de Paris, John Nelson and Basel Symphony, Marc Albrecht and Danish National Symphony and Eliahu Inbal and Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, and recitals in France, Italy, Hong Kong, China and Japan.

Kun Woo Paik’s numerous recordings include Scriabin, Liszt, complete works for solo piano by Mussorgsky, Rachmaninov’s complete piano concerti and Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini (under Vladimir Fedoseyev for BMG).  His complete Prokofiev piano concerti recording received both Diapason d’Or of the year and Nouvelle Académie du disque awards in France.

To celebrate JS Bach’s year in 2000, he recorded Busoni’s transcriptions of Bach’s organ works followed by an album of Fauré’s Piano works, which won all the major prizes in France.  He recently released the complete works for piano and orchestra by Chopin with Antoni Wit and the Warsaw Philharmonic.

Kun Woo Paik has recorded all thirty-two Sonatas by Beethoven for Decca.
 “Paik’s sense of drama, his wit, mastery of nuance, thoughtfully weighted chords and fleet-fingered virtuosity, all are remarkable.” (Rob Cowan, The Independent)

Kun Woo Paik lives in Paris and is the Artistic Director of the Festival International de Musique de Dinard, France and was made the “Chevalier de l’ordre des arts et des lettres” by the French Government in 2000.

September 2014