Sang Yoon Kim

Principal Clarinet, Philip H. and Katherine Nason Chair

South Korean clarinetist Sang Yoon Kim (1987) is the principal clarinet of The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Sang Yoon is the top prize winner of the 67th Prague Spring International Music Competition 2015. His career highlights include his appearance as a soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra under the baton of their Music Director, Sakari Oramo, at the Prague Spring International Music Festival. Moreover, he is a laureate of multiple international competitions, including the International Clarinet Competition in Ghent, first prize at the UNISA International Flute and Clarinet Competition in 2014, and first prize from the famous Jacques Lancelot International Clarinet Competition in 2012.

Kim served as a guest principal clarinet with the leading orchestras, including the Cleveland Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony with Vladimir Jurowski, Christoph Eschenbach, Franz-Welser Most, Jaap Van Zweden, and many others.

As a soloist, he has appeared with the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of the Opera de Rouen Haute-Normandie, Auburn Symphony Orchestra, Kwazulu natal Symphony Orchestra, and multiple national orchestras in Korea such as Prime, Won-Ju, Sung-Nam, Mokpo and Gwang-Ju philharmonic Orchestra.

Sang Yoon Kim is also a sought-after chamber musician and has been invited to the Marlboro Music Festival since 2021 and made his debut at the Ravinia Festival with the Calidore String Quartet in 2013. He has performed with highly regarded artists such as Swedish clarinetist Martin Fröst, the celebrated French string quartet Quatuor Ebene, and pianists Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Robert Levin.

As a passionate teacher, he was appointed assistant professor at the University of Minnesota in 2022. Kim has given masterclasses in multiple US and South Korean universities, including the Peabody Institute of Music, University of Southern California, University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire, Minnesota Clarinet Academy, Seoul National University, Korea National University of Arts, Han Yang University, and many others.

Kim made his debut with the Colburn Orchestra at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles in 2013. The orchestra was conducted by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra's fellow conductor Dietrich Paredes. The press raved about the performance given by the young clarinetist: "His strikingly mature artistry, his poised security of technique and expression were a marvel; from his instrument were drawn silken lines of sound, suffused with a dewy poignancy, and, in the finale, manic squawks and yawps."

The graduate of the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse in Paris, where he was accepted as the first Korean clarinetist in the school's history. He studied with distinguished professors Michel Arrignon and Pascal Moragues. His tuition in Paris was preceded by three years with Florent Heau at the Conservatoire a Rayonnement Regional de Rueil-Malmaison. After Paris, he went on to study in Los Angeles at the Colburn Conservatory of Music, gaining an artist diploma under Yehuda Gilad in 2014.

Sang Yoon Kim is a Buffet Crampon, Vandoren and Silverstein Performing Artist.