Flautist Jamie Yoo – Dame Myra Hess Performer Profile

Flautist Jamie Yoo performed at the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert series on November 30, 2016. A graduate of Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, Yoo is an active soloist, orchestra, and chamber musician performer.

Joined by pianist Beilin Han, Yoo performed works by Debussy, Bach, Bohm, and Jolivet at her Dame Myra Hess Memorial concert.

Read our conversation with Yoo below.

Yoo and her parents

Picture this Post: when and why did you start playing your instrument?

Jamie Yoo: I started piano at age 5 and I tried violin and other wind instruments. Also, I had vocal lessons, but didn't get much attention. But, when I met the flute at age 13, I immediately fall in love with the beautiful tone and sound of it. My first musical experience (that I can remember) was a Yo-Yo Ma performance on the radio. My parents love classical music, and they always put on the classical channel when they drive. Whenever I got a ride from school to home, or to any sport activity, I always had a chance to listen to classical music on the radio. 

Where were you born and where did you grow up?

I was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea, until I moved to the U.S at the age of 17 to study at college. 

Please tell me about your family of origin – what do your parents do for a living?  

They are doctors.


Do you play other instruments?

I started with piano, then I moved to flute. I can play most of the wind instruments.

When did you decide to become a professional musician?  If you didn’t choose that path, is there another career that would have been your top pick?

I decided to be a professional musician in high school. I would have wanted to be an artist – painting, making furniture, or interior design and floor planning. Or maybe an archeologist.  

When you are not rehearsing, performing, or doing other things related to your musical career, how do you spend time?

I like to explore different countries, meet diverse people, read books, go swimming, and do yoga.

Please tell me about each piece in your program – why did you choose this piece, and what do you hope the audience hears in it?

Basically, I chose the program based on my interests. Recently, I love listening to the repertoires of Debussy and Bach.

Debussy, Syrinx, L. 129 – It’s a very short piece, but it includes diverse colors. I also thought that it’s ancient Greek story is interesting to introduce to the audience. 

J.S. Bach, Flute Sonata in A major, BWV 1032 – I start the day with Bach’s Goldberg Variations every day. I simply love Bach. I always want to include Bach in my recital program.

Boehm Grand Polonaise for Flute and Piano in D Major, Op. 16 – This is fun to listen to, melodic, and flashy. One challenge in this piece is that I need to be very flashy and show off my technique.

Jolivet Chant de Linos – There is a very strong power in this piece, if you play it well. The rhythms and technique of this are particularly challenging.

Do you any personal or professional goals for the coming year?

I want to keep playing in orchestra and learning diverse programs. I also want to meet and teach students with the different teaching methods.

Recently, opera got my attention after playing Eugene Onegin in Spoleto Music Festival. I fall in love with operas the more I learn to play them. Like orchestral repertories, I learned that operas can detailed and sound very different. I wasn't really enjoying playing them when I was in school because they need so many hours of rehearsal. But now I find it so much fun to play in an opera orchestra. I'd like to play more opera repertoires!

Personally, I plan to learn to brew coffee professionally and learn cooking.   

For more information, visit Jamie Yoo's wesbite.

All photos courtesy of Jamie Yoo.


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