LIVING TONES Compositions

Contact: Score and Living Tones Lecture at JHKSOURCE@gmail.com

Living Tones Lecture(PDF)

Kim has developed a series of compositions using her Living Tones philosophy--The timbral persona of each tone generated is treated with an abiding respect, as its philosophical mandate from Buddhism, a reverence for the ‘life’ of a tone, the color and nuance granted each articulation from Korean Shamanism.

Kim has given lectures about Living Tones at over 200 universities in the USA including Cornell, Yale, Wesleyan, Duke, Indiana, Peabody Consrvatory, New England Conservatory, Dartmouth College, University of Minnesota, UC San Diego, and University of Michigan.




REVIEWS

“This is new music/world music at its finest, beyond political correctness, into the realm of the sublime,
where words and cultural postures fall away.”  
Josef Woodard, The Los Angeles Times

"A gorgeously tactile piece that moved easily between an earthy folksiness and meditative refinement."
Allan Kozinn, The New York Times

"An essay in integration which suggested a Takemitsu-like ability to hover between eastern and western traditions."
Paul Griffiths, The Times (London)

"The delicacy of her effects and of the Kronos Quartet's playing were constantly riveting."
John Rockwell, The New York Times

 “She applied the concept of “living tones” from traditional Korean music to the Western string quartet.
The effect is a vivid one, especially in the high registers, where pitches slide in and out of consonances seductively. Kim is a composer to be watched.”  
Mark Sweed, Los Angeles Herald Examiner

"Her music is inspired by the directly textured instrumental sounds of her own country.
It could never have been written by a native Californian or New Yorker. It's exotic. It's different.
It reflects its culture in the same essential way that Beethoven's quartets reflected his time."
David Harrinton, the Kronos Quartet

“It is not as westernized in that it doesn’t use traditional melodies, but it has a lot of bite and impact
and it’s really visceral.”  
Gil Rose, Conductor, Boston Modern Orchestra Project

 

WORK LIST

ONE SKY II (2015-)
for orchestra: 15 minutes.
[winds at 3.2.2.1; brass at 2.2.2.1; timpani; 3 percussion; strings]
dedicated to the reunification of Korea.

CHILD OF WAR (2014)
for mixed chorus, percussion, piano accompaniment and optional komungo solo interlude: 35-40 minutes.
Dediated to Kim Phuc renowned fro 'the girl in the picture' during the Vietnam war. Commissioned by John Marshall Lee for The Mendelssohn Chorus of CT. Premire: Quick Center, Fairfield University (April 6, 2014).

TILINGS (2013)
for piccolo/flute, oboe, clarinet, violin, cello, komungo, percussion and cimbalom: 11 minutes. Composed for Either/Or ensemble (New York), Premiere: The Kitchen, New York

"In Tilings, Jin Hi Kim, an eloquent, eclectic advocate for the komungo,
vividly translated her instrument's characteristic slurs and wobbles for a Western ensemble of
woodwinds, strings, percussion and cimbalom."
Steve Smith, The New York Times

RAIN (2012)
for guitar, viola, bass, and komungo: 3 minutes.
Composed for KNOT ensemble.

TRIBAL GREETINGS (2010)
for flute, cello, komungo and percussion: 12 minutes.
Commissioned by New Haven Symphony Orchestra for MTC Music Alive.

Butterfly Metamorphoses (2010)
for violin solo: 10 minutes.


NORI III
(2009)
for percussion quartet with/without electric komungo: 12 minutes.
Commissioned by New Haven Symphony Orchestra Percussion Ensemble for Meet The Composer Music Alive.
Premiere: Woolsey Hall, New Haven, CT.

“the colorful, engrossing “Nori III” for Percussion Quartet and Electric Komungo. The komungo she played
is a large zither with a versatile range and tone. The infectious rhythms of the piece were playful all right,
while suggesting the hypnotic, repetitive style of American minimalists like Steve Reich.
Thanks to the exotic tones of the komungo and Asian percussion instruments
(drums, bells and big forked rattles), the insistent pace never grew monotonous.”  
David J. Baker, New Haven Register

NORI II
(2008)
for Bb clarinet, soprano saxophone, two percussionists and with/without electric komungo: 15 minutes. Revised NORI for NewEar Ensemble.
Premiered on April 26, 2008.

MONK DANCE
(2007)
for Korean barrel drum set and orchestra: 10 minutes.
[winds at 2.2.2.1; brass at 1.1.1.0; 2 percussion; strings at 6.5.4.4.3; and solo percussionist] Commissioned by New Haven Symphony Orchestra.
First Performance: Woolsey Hall, New Haven, CT.

"The most exciting of the instrumental imports (to orchestra) was the set of barrel drums used by
Jin Hi Kim in her own vibrant composition, "Monk Dance" ......her propulsive solos on drums took over,
leaving the audience breathless."
David Baker, New Haven Register

ETERNAL ROCK II (2006)
for Korean barrel drum set and orchestra: 20 minutes. [winds at 2.2.2.1; brass at 2.2.2.0; 3 percussion; strings at 10.8.6.6.4; and solo percussionist]
Commissioned by Boston Modern Orchestra Project.
First Performance: Jordan Hall, Boston, MA.

“Some of the orchestral writing sounds like movie music, but the way that Kim extends the effect of the drums
by additional percussionists ringed around the stage is striking.”  
Richard Dyer, The Boston Globe

ONE SKY (2005)
for string chamber orchestra [6.4.4.3.2] and electric komungo: 18 minutes. Commissioned by Great Mountains Music Festival. Premiered by the Festival Orchestra with Ms. Kim as soloist in South Korea on August 7, 2005.

NORI (2002)
for two percussionists, winds (Bb clarinets, bass clarinet, soprano saxophone), keyboard synthesizer and with/without electric komungo: 20 minutes.
Commissioned by Meet The Composer's Commissioning Music/USA for Zeitgeist.
First Performance: Walker Art Center, MN.

THOUSAND YEARS VIVAT (2002)
for Bb clarinet, keyboard synthesizer, two percussionists, komungo and pipa: 5 minutes.
First Performance: Walker Art Center, MN.

ETERNAL ROCK (2001)
for orchestra and komungo: 12 minutes.
[winds at 2.2.2.1; brass at 2.2.2.1; timpani; 4 percussion; strings at 12.8.6.6.4; and komungo]
Commissioned by American Composers Orchestra.
First Performance: Carnegie Hall, NY.

"(Eternal Rock) moved through the orchestra like a curious outsider, wondering at the range of sounds
it can make and using it as an extension of twangy vocabulary of solo komungo."
Anne Midgette, The New York Times

GARDEN OF VENUS (1999)
for Korean komungo, Chinese pipa, Japanese yokobue and Balinese gender/voice: 20 minutes.
Commissioned by The Asia Society for “Asian Women in Music Today”.
First Performance: The Asia Society, NY.

AGATE SLICE (1998)
for violin, cello and percussion: 10 minutes.
Commissioned by the Festival Nieuwe Muziek.
First Performance: Festival Nieuwe Muziek, The Netherlands.

VOICES OF SIGIMSE (1996)
for flute, clarinet, viola, cello, bass and komungo:13 minutes.
Composed for the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.
First Performance: Lincoln Center Summer Festival, NY.

"A gorgeously tactile piece that moved easily between an earthy folksiness and meditative refinement."
Allan Kozinn, The New York Times

KEE MAEK #4 (1995)
for cello solo: 9 minutes.
First Performance: Crane Festival of New Music, SUNY College at Potsdam.

YOEUM (1995)
for baritone and Korean male kagok singer: 13 minutes.
Commissioned by Thomas Buckner.
First Performance: Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

TCHONG #2 (1995)
for flute/bass flute and Korean daegum: 10 minutes.
First Performance: Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

PIRI QUARTET (1993)
for English horn/oboe and three Korean piri: 15 minutes.
Commissioned by Meet The Composer/Reader's Digest Commissioning Program.
First Performance: Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

“likewise explore the likenesses and differences of performing on instruments of the same family
but radically different cultures.”  
Dean Suzuki, Option Magazine

NONG ROCK (1992)
for string quartet and komungo: 15 minutes.
Commissioned by Lincoln Center for the Kronos Quartet.
First Performance: Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, NY.

“Savoring the life of each richly inflected note.”  
Josef Woodard, Los Angeles Times

"Kim juxtaposes and synthesizes the timbres, techniques and even styles of East and West in a way
that is at once jarring and inevitable.”  
Dean Suzuki, Option Magazine

LIQUID MIGRATION (1990)
for viola, cello and prepared piano: 10 minutes.
Commissioned by the Fidelio Trio.
First Performance: Crowell Hall, Wesleyan University, CT.

TCHONG #1 (1988)
for prepared flute/alto flute: 8 minutes.
First Performance: Experimental Intermedia Foundation, NY.

KEE MAEK #3 (1988)
for viola and cello: 11 minutes.
First Performance: Alternative Museum, NY.

“An otherworldly violin and cello duet in which sliding tones gave the impression of brush strokes on a canvas.”
Allen Kozinn, The New York Times

DASRUM (1988)
for clarinet, cello and komungo: 8 minutes.
Commissioned by Inoue Ensemble.
First Performance: Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Center, NY.

LINKING (1986)
for string quartet: 15 minutes.
Commissioned by the Kronos Quartet.
First Performance: Herbst Theater, San Francisco.

"An essay in integration which suggested a Takemitsu-like ability to hover between eastern and western traditions."
Paul Griffiths, The Times (London)

"The delicacy of her effects and of the Kronos Quartet's playing were constantly riveting."
John Rockwell, The New York Times

 “She applied the concept of “living tones” from traditional Korean music to the Western string quartet.
The effect is a vivid one, especially in the high registers, where pitches slide in and out of consonances seductively. Kim is a composer to be watched.”  
Mark Sweed, Los Angeles Herald Examiner

 “Linking is an elegant, spare work involving a most interesting juxtaposition of “soft” tones-
in which a note begins atone pitch and slides higher or lower to another-and firm attacks and releases.
The whole is beautifully organized.”  
Roy M. Close, Pioneer Press (MN)

KEE MAEK #2 (1986)
for solo violin: 9 minutes.
First Performance: Experimental Intermedia Foundation, NY

KEE MAEK #1 (1986)
for violin and cello: 11 minutes.
First Performance: San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

X4 FOR SOLO VIOLIN (1985)
for prerecorded tape and live performance: 9 minutes.
First Performance: New Performance Gallery, San Francisco.

X5 FOR SOLO FLUTE (1985)
for prerecorded tape and live performance of alto and soprano flutes and piccolo: 10 minutes. First Performance: Mills College, CA.


Multimedia Performance

GHOST KOMUNGOBOT (2015)
Performers: electric komungo, komungobot (virtual robotic instrument), sound designer, visual design and lighting designer: 60 minutes.
First Performance (work-in-process): CultureHub, La MaMa Theater, NYC.

DIGITAL BUDDHA (2007-2014)
Performers: komungo/electric komungo, percussion, video mandalas and video mix: 70 minutes.
First Performance: Korea Festival, Seoul, S. Korea.


SANJO ECSTASY
(2003)
Performers: electric komungo, kayagum, heagum, janggo, drum set and a shaman trance dancer: 90 minutes.
First Performance: Sanjo Festival in Jeonju, S. Korea.

DONG DONG TOUCHING THE MOONS (2000)
Performers: electric komungo, Indian tabla, Korean kagok singer, Indian kathak dancer, Chinese modern dancer, digital animation designer, multimedia designer, and lighting designer: 70 minutes.
First Performance: The Kitchen, NY.

“Her unique vision blends science fiction images, state-of-the-art technology, ancient mythology and
timeless music and dance traditions. No other artist is doing work quite like this, and she does it with superb style."  
Joseph McLellan, The Washington Post

"Kim’s austere music centered the work.... (she) applied the techniques of “living tones” to sustained notes:
filling them with vibrato, tightening them until they broke, using glottal stops to make them ripple like waves
around a rock....She turned Korean court-orchestra music into a haze of distant fanfares and
remembered rites, from a time when the moon was a divine power."  
Jon Pareles, The New York Times

JUPITER’S MOONS (2000)
Performers: electric komungo, kagok singer and computer: 10 minutes.
an excerpt from TOUCHING THE MOONS.

DONG DONG DARI (2000)
Performers: kagok singer and computer: 10 minutes.
an excerpt from TOUCHING THE MOONS.

DRAGON BOND RITE (1997)
Performers: Japanese otsuzumi drum and noh singer, Korean janggo drum and kagok singer, Indian mizhavu drum, Indonesian kendang drum and dalalng singer, Tuvan throat singer, Korean mask dancer, Indonesian topeng dancer, Indian kudyattam dancer, Japanese noh dancer and English noh singer.
Duration: 90 minutes. First Performance: Japan Society, NY.

“(Dragon Bond Rite) cut across barriers of language, culture and tradition, touch us at deep, irrational levels
result in a work that speaks to our common humanity.”  
Joseph McLellan, The Washington Post

“It’s wonderful to see these diverse Asian styles converse. All the movements are grounded,
yet how differently shaped and accented, how diverse the way feet strike the floor.
In Kim’s score, the styles of the master musicians actually merge.”  
Deborah Jowitt, The Village Voice

“The production’s drummers were percussion virtuosos, and its singers displayed a remarkable range of
vocal techniques, from high-pitched chanting to deep, awesome rumblings.”  
Jack Anderson, The New York Times

“a ground breaking collaboration, one which illuminates the artistic soul of Asia.”  
Thomas Morley, Asian American Press (MN)
                                                                                                         
“She is a paragon of how divergent cultural disciplines can merge to produce something not only vibrant,
but also smart and forward thinking.”  
Manny Theiner, Pittsburgh City Paper                                       

DANCE OF MEDITATION (1997)
Performers: Indian kudyattam dancer, Japanese noh dancer, Korean komungo, Japanese otsuzumi drum and Tuvan throat singer: 8 minutes.
an excerpt from DRAGON BOND RITE.

ELECTRIC JANGGO PERMUTATIONS (1994)
Electric janggo drum and computer: 9 minutes.
Created at PASS (public Access Synthesizer Studio), NY.

36 STRINGS (1993)
Komungo with five video channels: 20 minutes.
Co-created with Joseph Celli at iEAR Studios, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY.

VIDEO PASSAGE (1992)
Electric komungo and video installatioN: 7 minutes.
First Performance: Kjell Bjorgeengen ‘s video installation at Ostsee Biennale, Rostock, Norway.

REFRACTED CONFLUENCE (1991)
Performers: komungo and computer: 25 minutes.
First Performance: University of Victoria BC, Canada.

MOVEMENT AND RESONANCE (1985)
Solo dancer with 10 Asian gongs: 10 minutes.
First Performance: Mills College, CA.

 

Komungo Solo
Contact: selected score are avaiable for komungo solos from Living Tones Publisher at JHKSOURCE@gmail.com

"Virtuoso, Jin Hi Kim promises thoughtful, shimmering East-West amalgams in combinations that are both new and unlikely to be repeated." Peter Watrous, The New York Times

"The solo demonstrations and performances were brilliant and fascinating."
James R. Oestriech, The New York Times

"True world music being made here, both ancient and modern and without borders. Outstanding." Dennis Yudt, Pulse Magazine

"With her electric komungo, she floated sustained tones and rudimentary melodies or
plucked twangs suggesting a jaw-harp or hinted at the bent notes of the blues."
Jon Pareles, The New York Times

"a lush solo improvisation stays true to the nature of the komungo while showing real imagination about how its sound can be processed and coloured."
Clive Bell, Wire Magazine

 

Exceeding (2015) for electric komungo: 10 minutes.

Influential Dance (Mother Jatayu in Joshua Tree) (2014-2015) for komungo: 10 minutes.

Doduri (2007-2015) for electric komungo: 10 minutes.

Saturn's Rings (2000-2014) for electric komungo: 10 minutes.

Self Protrait (1999-2010) for komungo:11 minutes.

Unknot (2003-2010) for electric komungo: 10 minutes.

Salgeng (2005-2010) for komungo: 8 minutes.

Ssareng (1999) for komungo: 5 minutes.

Core (1999-2001) for komungo: 7 minutes.

Dorang (1999) for komungo: 7 minutes.

Fluttering Tchong (1999) for komungo: 3 minutes.

Silk To Metal (1995) for komungo: 3 minutes.