Suh, Kyungsun (b Seoul, 8 Nov 1942). Korean composer.
She studied at Seoul National University (BA 1964, MA 1968), presenting a concert of her first works in 1966, and later continued her studies at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst (1970?2). In 1974 she became a lecturer at Hanyang University. She joined a music theatre project with Mauricio Kagel in Cologne (1981), and served as president of the Korean Society of Women Composers (1993?7). Her works have been performed in North America, Asia, Australasia and Europe.
Favouring small ensembles, her representative early works include An Illusion (1977) for three flutes, harp and percussion and Phenomenon I (1982) for two pianos.
In the latter work, bar lines are replaced by squares of one second duration, within which single notes and chord clusters are interspersed with flurries of ornamentation.
Monodv coupled to elaborate serial techniques features in later works, notably the solo violin piece Pentastisch (1987).
Commissioned as a 'Korean' piece, with ornaments derived from traditional court music, this is written as a five-section arch in which distinct pitch areas appear.
The initially divergent and contrasting materials, with blocks of low collegno or pizzicato notes set against high legato melodies, converge as the piece progresses.
In At the Soo-Kook (1991), the piano provides rhythm and chord clusters while the melodic line is split between percussion and horn.
Poem (1992) is less rhythmically fixed, with each square lasting four seconds.
Serial rows are embedded within this framework, and melodic flow is disguised by timbral explorations on the harp, tone clusters and arpeggios described in the score as 'whistling', 'thunder effect', 'timpanic', 'xylophonic' and 'aeolian tremolo'.
Metric regularity reappears in Suh's later orchestral works, the Poem for orchestra (1994) and Concerto grosso (1996).
Orch: Poem. 1994, rev, as Yeshi, 1996; Shigok [Poem], str, 1994; Cone. grosso, ste. 1996:
At the Courtyard of an Old Palace. 1998
Chbr and solo inst: 3 Movts, cl. vc, 1973; Prelude, str. 1975; An Illusion. 3 fl, hp, perc. 1977; Poem, fl, 1979;
A Movt, fl, hp. 1980; Poem, pf. 1981; Phenomenon I, 2 pf. 1982; Poem. vc, pf. 1982; Poem, str. 1983;
Lamentation, pf. perc. 1983; Conc., 9 str, 1983; Pentastisch, vn, 1987, Music for 16 Str, 1989;
At the Soo-Kook, hn, pf. 2 perc. 1991; Poem. fl, hp, 1992; Shigok, taegum, kayagun, 1995;
Kyol [Texture]. kayagum, 1996; Music for Chbr ens, 2 fl, 2 hn, 2 perc. 13 str. 1998
Vocal: For a Child, [v, fl, cl, perc, 1975; 2 Images, 1v, vn, pf, 1975; 3 Songs for Autumn. lv. 1987;
Kyoul pada [The Winter Sea], 1v, 1991
Principal publisher : Soomoondang
'Chongumul kyomhan 16-segi taewibop haksup cholcha [Teaching
Procedure of 16th-Century
Counterpoint with the Ear-Training of
Polyphony], Umak kyoyuk, ii (Seoul. 1974)
'Mujosongumak ui umchegye [Introduction to the Structure of Atonal Music of Allen Forte], Umak nondan,
The Language of my Music (Taipei, 1985)
Some Characteristics of Ancient Korean Aristocratic Music