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EXPLOREPerforming Arts

Jazz Brings Us Together image

Jazz Brings Us Together

The Korean Cultural Center Washington, D.C. proudly presents a groundbreaking joint performance by two acclaimed, cutting-edge jazz ensembles, The Youngjoo Song Septet and Otherworld for Jazz Brings Us Together. These two sensational groups will meet for the first time to introduce and blend their unique styles of contemporary jazz in a free performance at An Die Musik Live in Baltimore, Maryland on Friday, June 16, presented in partnership with the D.C. Jazz Festival as a Fishman Embassy Series event. 

This joint performance celebrates the harmony among Baltimore’s diverse regional communities through cultural exchange and a shared love of jazz music. Audiences won’t want to miss this stellar ensemble performance featuring top Korean and American artists in each group, plus an epic international jam session. 

The Youngjoo Song Septet is led by New York-based Korean jazz pianist Youngjoo Song, a graduate of Sookmyung Women’s University, the Berklee College of Music, and the Manhattan School of Music. She quickly climbed Korea’s jazz charts after her debut a decade ago, and has performed with prominent jazz artists from Korea and the United States. She headlined the Blue Note Jazz Festival in New York, among other major events, and twice won for Best Jazz and Crossover Album at the Korean Music Awards.

Otherworld, led by pianist, recording artist, award-winning composer, and Director of Jazz Studies at Goucher College Jeffrey Chappell, is a cutting-edge contemporary group with a unique sound that appeals to a wide range of audiences. Winners of a Global Music Award for their self-titled debut album, the group blends jazz, classical, and Middle Eastern influences, played on a mix of acoustic and electric instruments with an emphasis on improvisation. The group members share an aesthetic vision that unifies their work.

This event is co-sponsored by the DC Jazz Festival, June 9-18, 2017. Find details, artists, and more here

Jazz Brings Us Together
WHAT: Joint Korea-US jazz performance 
WHO: The Youngjoo Song Septet, Otherworld
WHEN: Friday, June 16, 7:00 pm
WHERE: An Die Musik Live (409 N Charles St, Baltimore, MD 21201)
FREE with an RSVP!

About the Performers


Youngjoo Song (piano/composer)
Youngjoo Song  is one of Korea's leading jazz pianists and composers. Her stunning rise in the jazz world enabled her to record ten albums with distinguished labels such as EMI, Warner and Sony. As a native Korean, Youngjoo's early career took off as she became a top live and recording musician in both K-Pop and Gospel music. To pursue her dream as a jazz musician she decided to leave her fame behind and take on a new challenge in New York City. After completing her degrees at Berklee College of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and Purchase College, she quickly climbed Korea’s jazz charts in record sales and popularity. She was able to work with some of the most prominent jazz musicians in the modern era from both Korea and the US, recording and sharing the stage with Steve Wilson, Mark Turner, Alan Ferber, Gretchen Parlato, Kendrick Scott, Marcus Gilmore, Vicente Archer, Rogerio Boccato, just to name a few. She won at the Korean Music Awards for Best Jazz & Crossover Album in 2010 (Love Never Fails) and Best Jazz & Crossover Performance in 2012 (Tale of a City), and continues to receive nominations for her new releases. 

Hogyu Hwang (bass)
An alumnus of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, Hogyu has performed with acclaimed musicians including Jeff Tain Watts, Terry Lyn Carrington, Dave Douglas, Joe Lovano, and Jimmy Heath. He achieved mastery in both upright bass and electric bass guitar by stepping up his career with performances at the International Association of Jazz Educators annual conferences, concerts at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., the JVC Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, and Beantown Jazz Festival, among others. 

Sangmin Lee (drums)
One of the most in-demand recording and live drummers in Korea, Sangmin Lee has over 10 years of session experience. He eventually moved to the U.S. and graduated from Berklee College of Music (B.M.) and New York University (M.M) where the fresh and vibrant New York music scene lured him to explore and expand his musicality by collaborating with artists such as Grammy-winning producer Fran Cathcart, Casey Benjamin, Dave Pietro, Sarah Charles and others. Sangmin released his first solo album, Evolution, in 2010 as a music producer, composer, and a drummer. 

Sungwon Kim (guitar)
Sungwon Kim is a guitarist, composer, and producer based in New York City, where he has played the pit orchestra for the hit Broadway musical Wicked. He graduated from the Berklee College of Music (Magna Cum Laude and recipient of numerous awards and a full scholarship), Musicians Institute, and Los Angeles Music Academy, with a master's degree in Jazz Studies from NYU Steinhardt. Sungwon had the opportunity to study and collaborate with renowned musicians including Jimmy Page, John Scofield, Adam Rogers, Chris Potter, Peter Bernstein, Alan Ferber, John Blackwell, to name a few. 

Alan Ferber (trombone)
Grammy-nominated trombonist-composer Alan Ferber has been called “one of the jazz world’s premier composers and arrangers for larger groups” by All About Jazz NY. Jazz Times magazine describes Ferber’s compositions as “inspired and meticulous” and the L.A. Weekly deems him “one of the premier modern jazz arrangers of our time.” For the last six years, he has been recognized as one of the leading trombonists of his generation in Down Beat magazine’s International Critics’ Poll and Readers’ Poll. Ferber was the recipient of a 2013 New Jazz Works grant from Chamber Music America, funded by the Doris Duke Foundation. Since 2011, he has been an Adjunct Professor of jazz studies at New York University’s Steinhardt School.

Alex Sipiagin (trumpet)
Jazz Festivals worldwide have seen Alex Sipiagin perform with the likes of Dave Holland, Michael Brecker, the Mingus groups, and other top artists. Born in 1967 in Yaroslavl, Russia, Alex began the trumpet at age 12, studying at the Moscow Music Institute and the Gnessin Conservatory in Moscow where he received his Baccalaureate. In 1990, Alex participated in the International Louis Armstrong Competition sponsored by the Thelonius Monk Institute in Washington D.C., winning top honors and soon after relocating to the jazz mecca of the world, New York City. 

Will Vinson (saxophone)
Originally from London, alto saxophonist and composer Will Vinson moved to New York City in 1999 and has remained there ever since. Since his arrival, he has appeared and/or recorded with Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Ari Hoenig, Marcus Gilmore, Chris Potter, Kurt Elling, Lage Lund, Aaron Parks, and many others. Will has an international reputation as a leader and sideman. All About Jazz New York describes Will as playing “with a relentless force.” Will's writing, and the playing of his colleagues, combines a great respect for the century-long jazz tradition with explorations into the rhythmic, harmonic and melodic realms of contemporary forms.


Otherworld is a cutting-edge contemporary group with a unique sound that appeals to a wide range of audiences. The group blends jazz, classical, and Middle Eastern influences, played on a mix of acoustic and electric instruments, with an emphasis on improvisation. The group members share an aesthetic vision that unifies their work.

Jeffrey Chappell, piano/composer
Jeffrey Chappell has performed throughout the United States in recitals and chamber music and has been a soloist with major symphony orchestras. He has concertized in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. He is also a recording artist and an award-winning composer. His teachers were Jane Allen, Eleanor Sokoloff at the Curtis Institute, and Leon Fleisher at the Peabody Institute. He is on the faculties of Goucher College and The Levine School of Music. Chappell is the pianist in the contemporary jazz quartet, Otherworld, which won a Global Music Award for their debut album. He has appeared as a pianist at the Key West International Jazz Festival and as a jazz band conductor at the East Coast Jazz Festival and in Washington, D.C. area venues. He has performed with jazz artists such as Pepe Gonzalez, Jeff Antoniuk, Wes Crawford, Jon Mathis, and Seth Kibel. He was the pianist and arranger for DC Express, a jazz vocal quartet, and was a member of the Lenox Ensemble, an improvisation group of classical musicians. He has frequently improvised piano accompaniment for silent films at the National Gallery of Art.

Chris Taylor, bass
Bassist Chris Taylor has performed throughout North America with the Baltimore-based soul musician Bosley. Mr. Taylor has also appeared with funk bands Jackson On The Prowl and The Superland Stage Band, as well as the punk bands Slaughtermelon and The Gutter Monkeys. A graduate of Goucher College, he has studied bass with Golder O’Niell, Ian Trusheim, Steve Yankee, and Pepe Gonzales. He currently teaches privately through Musika Inc., has taught at the Goucher Summer Arts Institute, and is in demand as a private teacher around the state of Maryland.

Jake Marinari, percussion
Percussionist Jake Marinari studied frame drum and darbuka with the world-renowned percussionist Yshai Afterman in Israel, and drumset with Ed Nardi, Nick Wight, Wes Crawford, and N. Scott Robinson. Jake earned a Bachelor of Music degree as a scholarship student at Goucher College, where he was awarded the Robert Hall Lewis Prize for extraordinary achievement in music. He has performed throughout North America with the Baltimore-based Soul musician, Bosley. He has served on the OrchKids program for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. He is on the faculty of Music For The Young Child and teaches privately in the Baltimore region.

Sam King, saxophone
Saxophonist Sam King, a native of Baltimore, has performed in Japan and the United States. He has appeared with the world-renowned jazz musicians Arnold Sterling, Fred Wesley, Ted Baker, and Tim Green. He also opened for award winning Gospel recording artist Yolanda Adams and shared the stage with Hezekiah Walker. He attended Howard University and St. Augustine's College as well as the Baltimore School for the Arts and Milwaukee High School for the Arts.