Mia Chung has ascended to the highest ranks of America’s pianists. Described as “uncommonly insightful, individualistic, lively” and “technically dazzling” by the New York Times, Ms. Chung has enjoyed great success as a recitalist, concerto soloist and chamber musician. In 1993, she won the Concert Artists Guild Competition and in 1997, she received the Avery Fisher Career Grant, the highest recognition for young concert artists in the United States.
Selected by Mstislav Rostropovich for a televised collaboration at the age of 16, Ms. Chung has demonstrated a prodigious talent since her childhood. She possesses an exceptional understanding of and love for the works of J.S. Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Mendelssohn and Schumann. In a live performance of the Goldberg Variations by J.S. Bach, The Wall Street Journal compared her playing to that of Glenn Gould’s legendary recording of the same in 1955. Her debut recording on the Channel Classics label featured Beethoven sonatas and bagatelles. Upon selecting this recording as a "Best of the Year" for 1995, Gramophone magazine noted: "Chung's performance is inspired . . . a totally absorbing musical experience." A Schumann disc followed, winning the Critics Association of Korea Award for best keyboard recording of the year. Channel Classics released two more CDs, featuring Bach's Goldberg Variations and a second volume of Beethoven's Sonatas and Bagatelles. In 2000, Ms. Chung premiered and recorded a work by composer Lee Hyla called Riff and Transfiguration on the Tzadik label, also to critical acclaim.
Ms. Chung has performed extensively in North America, Europe, Asia and Central America. As a concerto soloist, she has appeared with orchestras such as the Baltimore Symphony, National Symphony, Alabama Symphony, New Haven Symphony, Corpus Christi Symphony, Harrisburg Symphony, Boston Pops, Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra, KBS Symphony Orchestra in Seoul, and the Seoul Philharmonic under the direction of such conductors as Leonard Slatkin, John Nelson, Andrew Litton, Murray Sidlin, David Atherton and Richard Westerfield. An active recitalist, known for her combinations of performance and engaging talk, Ms. Chung has performed in major concert halls around the world, including the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., Symphony Hall in Boston, Jordan Hall in Boston, Hoam Art Hall in Seoul, Korea, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Carnegie Hall (Pittsburgh), the Krannert Center (University of Illinois), the Orange County Performing Arts Center, LaJolla Music Society, Yokohama Festival in Japan and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center. Chosen as an Artistic Ambassador by the United States Information Agency in 1993, Ms. Chung toured Thailand, Singapore, Tonga and the former Soviet Union, becoming the first American pianist to perform in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan.
As a chamber musician, Ms. Chung has performed with celebrated artists such as Bernard Greenhouse, William Preucil, Philip Setzer, Ani and Ida Kavafian, David Shifrin, Charles Neidich, Carol Wincenc, Paul Neubauer, Gary Hoffman, and Hillary Hahn. She has also collaborated with the Brentano, Borromeo, St. Petersburg, St. Lawrence and Pacifica String Quartets, among others. A former member of the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society II, she has performed in concerts and educational presentations at Lincoln Center. Her performances at summer festivals include the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center, the Cascade Festival in Oregon, the Masterworks Festival in Winona Lake, IN, the Rockport Festival in Rockport, MA and the Mainly Mozart Festival in San Diego. From 2002-2004, Ms. Chung toured Korea and the United States with violinist Catherine Cho for performances of Beethoven’s ten piano and violin sonatas. Her recent collaborations include two-piano recitals and concertos with pianist Alina Polyakov, a protégé of the celebrated Russian pianist, Emil Gilels. Their first CD with music by Ravel, Barber and Rachmaninoff was released in May 2013. The 2011-2014 seasons also included solo and chamber music performances at the J.F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Shalin Liu Performing Arts Center in Rockport, Massachusetts, Symphony Hall in Boston with the Boston Pops Orchestra, and the Seoul Arts Center Concert Hall in Seoul, Korea. A recording of the complete Brahms Piano Trios with violinist Elizabeth Larson and cellist Soo Bae will be released on the Concert Artists Guild Records label in the fall of 2015.
A distinguished educator and music advocate, Ms. Chung has worked extensively to provide greater understanding and increased awareness of the classical repertoire. She has given lecture-recitals across the United States on stage and in the classroom. Her DVD recording entitled, Notations: A Composer’s Response to Crisis was released in 2008 and has garnered high praise. The DVD includes illuminating performances and analyses of Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas, Op. 53 and Op. 110 (www.miachung.com). As a radio personality, Ms. Chung served as the first "Young Artist in Residence" for National Public Radio's Performance Today. Ms. Chung's work at NPR earned her a nomination as "Debut Artist of the Year." She went on to serve as "Artist-in-Radio" at WCRB-FM in Boston and WGMS-FM in Washington, D.C. and has appeared on public radio programs throughout the United States.
In April 2015, Ms. Chung and Arnold Steinhardt, first violinist of the Guarneri Quartet, teamed up to teach a Curtis online course (MOOC) entitled, The World of the String Quartet, available at coursera.org. The course provides discussion, analysis, historical background and demonstrations of important string quartet compositions and information on the legendary performers who brought them to life.
Mia Chung was born in Madison, Wisconsin and grew up in the Washington, D.C. area. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College and received a master's degree from Yale University and a doctorate from the Juilliard School. Her teachers have included Peter Serkin, Boris Berman, Raymond and Anne Hanson and George Manos. From 1991 to 2012, Ms. Chung was Artist-in-Residence and Professor of Music at Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts. In 2012, she joined the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.