Holly Hyun Choe is a Korean-American conductor from Los Angeles and currently the Music Director of the Orchesterverein Wiedikon and the University of St. Gallen Alumni Symphony Orchester in Switzerland. Holly is also a Conducting Fellow of the Deutscher Musikrat Dirigentenforum (Conductor’s Forum) in Germany and has conducted concerts with the Heidelberg Symphony, Hofer Symphoniker, and the Brandenburg Symphoniker. She is one of the Award Recipients of the Marin Alsop Taki Concordia Conducting Fellowship and a fellow for the Peter Eötvös Foundation Mentoring Program (2020).
Highlights of her 2018/19 season included guest conducting with the Musikkollegium Winterthur, Sønderjyllands Symfoniorkester in Denmark and Germany, and a children’s concert engagement with the Collegium Musicum Basel. She also featured female composers Jennifer Higdon and Grazyna Bacewicz in her season. Living in Switzerland, Holly has also premiered three new works by Swiss composers: Cedric Ziegler’s “Neon Diaries”, Marylène Müller’s “Pages d’écriture” and Jacqueline Gemperli’s “Artikel einunddressig.”
In the 2019/20 season, she will work with the Janacek Philharmonie Ostrava, Hradec Kralove Filharmonie, Pilsen Opera House, Olten Filharmoni Orchestra, Ensemble Reflektor, Plzen J. K. Tyl Theatre Opera, Wiener Staatsoper through the Eötvös Mentorship, and assisting Leonard Slatkin at the National Orchestre de Lyon.
Holly has participated in masterclasses with conductors including Bernard Haitink, Jorma Panula, Neeme Järvi, Paavo Järvi, Simone Young, Jaap van Zweden, and Teodor Currentzis. While studying at the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK), she conducted several professional orchestras (Trondheim Symphony, Heidelberg Symphony, Gstaad Festival Orchestra, Brandenburg Symphony, Picardie Orchestra, and the Hofer Symphony).
An avid supporter of new music, she has given world-premieres of living composers from Greece, Mexico, Sweden, Switzerland, China, France, South Korea, and the USA. One of these highlights involve a live 3D printer during a performance — “Black Wire Concertina #1-5” written by Stefan Bachmann. In a way to bond her two different cultures, she directed a 250+ member Korean traditional percussion music ensemble presenting Samulnori music in the form of an American parade band performing in several USA national parades.
Her passion extends to education and healthcare; she teaches beginning conducting courses at ZHdK and has taught seven years of summer music camps all over the States. She has presented conducting seminars in schools, nursing homes, a center for adults with disabilities, Immigrant Family Services Institute for Haitian Immigrants, and as a guest artist at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Arts Museum in Boston.
Holly is a self-taught clarinetist aged thirteen and received her first private music lesson at age nineteen. She received a full-tuition scholarship toward her Bachelor’s Degree in clarinet performance and music education at the Bob Cole Conservatory in Long Beach, CA. Her first conducting Master’s Degree was completed at the New England Conservatory with Charles Peltz. Recently, she finished her orchestral conducting Master’s Degree at the ZHdK with Johannes Schlaefli.
Verdi: La forza del destino (Overture)
Beethoven: Concerto for violin in D major, Op 61 – 3rd mvt
Alexandra Grimal: humus (compulsory new work)
Bartók: Divertimento – 3rd mvt
Debussy: Prélude à L’après-midi d’un faune
Fabio Vacchi: Was Beethoven African? (compulsory new work)