SPCO violinist leaving for the New York Philharmonic

Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra Second Principal Violin Kyu-Young Kim revealed today he is leaving to join the New York Philharmonic.

Locked out musicians at both the SPCO and the Minnesota Orchestra have been predicting for months that players would leave. Clarinetist Tim Paradise quit the SPCO in September. However this appears to be the first departure from the SPCO as a result of the lock out.

In a release from the musicians today Kim talked about his disappointment at leaving after winning his spot in New York at an audition last Saturday.

“While I am thrilled at this opportunity to play with one of the world’s great orchestras, I am saddened to be leaving the SPCO under these circumstances. In the space of four months, the lockouts of both orchestras have changed the Twin Cities from a destination metropolis for musicians to a place that many of us are actively trying to leave. “

Kim was associate concertmaster of the SPCO from 2000-2005, then left for New York to work with the Daedalus Quartet. He returned to St Paul in the fall of 2011 to become the SPCO second principal violin. His wife Pitnarry Shin is a cellist who began playing with the Minnesota Orchestra in 2001, and stayed till 2006. She became a full member of the orchestra in 2011.

The Minnesota Orchestra lost violinist Peter Maguire who left in December to become concertmaster with the Tonnhalle Orchestra in Zurich Switzerland.

While many of the locked out musicians of both the Minnesota Orchestra and the SPCO have been substituting at other orchestras during the lock outs, and several have reportedly auditioned elsewhere, no other departures have been announced so far.

UPDATE: A note from Minnesota Orchestra Musicians Ellen Smith clarifies that Pitnarry Shin became a full member of the Orchestra in 2001, left in 2006, and then won back her chair in 2001. Smith says Shin will be departing back to New York with her husband.

Smith’s note continues: There are several Minnesota Orchestra members who have taken a years leave of absence who will not be returning to Minnesota as a result of the lockout: Matthew Young, viola, Sarah Kwak and Vali Phillips, violin.

MPR news will be following up on developments.