Han-Na Chang (Korean: 장한나 [tɕaŋhanna]; born December 23, 1982) is a South Korean conductor and cellist. She won the Rostropovich International Cello Competition in 1994 and developed an international career as a cellist. Since 2007 she has concentrated on conducting, and in 2013 was appointed Music Director of the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra, a post from which she resigned in September 2014.
Born in Suwon, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea, Chang began studying piano at age 3, and began her study in cello three years later at the age of 6. In 1993, her family moved to United States, where she was enrolled in the pre-college division of the Juilliard School. In 1993, she attended Mischa Maisky's masterclasses in Siena, Italy, and continued to study with him privately. In 1994, she competed in the Fifth Rostropovich International Cello Competition, and was awarded both the First Prize as well as the Contemporary Music Prize. Winning this competition opened the doors for Chang to study privately with Mstislav Rostropovich. In 1995 she made her debut recording (Tchaikovsky's Variations on a Rococo Theme and Saint-Saëns' Cello Concerto No. 1) with Rostropovich himself conducting the London Symphony Orchestra.
Chang has performed as cello soloist with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Berliner Philharmoniker, the Boston Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Cincinnati Symphony, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino in Florence, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Montreal Symphony, the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C., the New York Philharmonic, the NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo, the Orchestre de Paris, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, in 1998 the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia of Rome conductor Giuseppe Sinopoli, the La Scala Orchestra of Milan and the San Francisco Symphony.
Chang has said that she has been focusing on conducting since 2007. Active in introducing classical music to children and adults in Korea, in 2009, she founded the ‘Absolute Classic Festival’, where she serves as the artistic director. Each year, its orchestra is newly auditioned, discovering outstanding talents from its pool of over a hundred instrumentalists in their twenties and thirties.
Han-Na Chang made her UK conducting debut with the Philharmonia Orchestra in London in January 2012 and conducted the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic in February 2012. In 2013-14, she made her conducting debuts with the Dresden Staatskapelle and WDR Sinfonieorchester.
In September, 2013, she became Music Director of the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra and Principal Guest Conductor of the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra. On 8 September 2014, during a European tour with the Qatar Philharmonic, she resigned from her post with the orchestra, citing ‘persistent administrative difficulties and irreconcilable artistic differences with the management’.
Han-Na Chang received awards including:
- Both the First Prize and Contemporary Music Prize at the Fifth Rostropovich International Cello Competition (1994)
- Young Artist of the Year prize at the ECHO Classical Music Awards in Germany (1997)
- Best Concerto Album of the Year from Caecilia Award (Belgium) (2003)
- Best Concerto Album of the Year from Cannes Classical Awards (France) (2003)
- Best Concerto Album of the Year from ECHO Classical Music Awards (Germany) (2003)
- Best Concerto Album of the Year from Gramophone magazine (UK) (2003)
- Named a Classical Super-star of Tomorrow by the Gramophone Magazine (UK) (2006)
- Vivaldi Cello Concertos (2008)
- Romance - Lalo Cello Concerto & other pieces (2007)
- Shostakovich Cello Concerto No. 1/ Cello Sonata (2006)
- Prokofiev Sinfonia Concertante/ Cello Sonata (2003)
- The Swan (2001)
- Haydn Cello Concerto C major and D major (1998)
- Tchaikovsky Rococo Variations/Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto No. 1 (1996)
- Yoshihara (2007) p. 74
- Pasles (April 22, 2005)
- The Peninsula (December 11, 2012). "Music is about emotion, heart and soul". The Peninsula.
- Nordlinger (September 2001)
- Gulf Times (December 11, 2012). "Leading cellist joins Qatar Philharmonic". Gulf Times.
- English Ahram (December 12, 2012). "Qatar Philharmonic announces new music director". English Ahram online.
- "Han-na Chang Makes Her Uk Conducting Debut With Philharmonia Orchestra". Harrisonparrott.com. 2012-01-30. Retrieved 2012-12-19.
- REVIEW: Tchaikovsky's Romantic Violin, RLPO, Liverpool Philharmonic Hall - Joe Riley - Liverpool Echo
- "Han-Na Chang named Trondheim Symphony principal guest conductor". Gramophone. April 26, 2013. Retrieved June 6, 2013.
- The National (December 11, 2012). "Qatar Philharmonic's new unifying force". The National.
- Stevens, Alex (8 September 2014). "Han-Na Chang resigns from Qatar Philharmonic". Classical Music. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
- "Korean conductor quits Qatari orchestra over ‘irreconcilable’ differences". Al-Arabiya News. 10 September 2014. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
- Han-Na Chang - Reviews at musicalworld.com (retrieved 2014-8-9)
- "5th Rostropovich cello competition - 1994". Concours internationaux de la Ville de Paris. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
- "Korean Cellist Named Superstar of Tomorrow". The Chosun Ilbo. 10 July 2006. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
- Nordlinger, Jay (September 2001). "Kidsplay". The New Criterion, Vol. 20.
- Pasles, Chris (April 22, 2005). "Cellist dazzles in Disney Hall debut". Los Angeles Times
- Yoshihara, Mari (2007). Musicians from a different shore: Asians and Asian Americans in classical music. Temple University Press. ISBN 1-59213-332-0
- Han-Na Chang at EMI Classics
- Han-Na Chang page at HarrisonParrott
- Han-na Chang at AllMusic
- Han-Na Chang: 'Music is joy in creation' - interview on Al Jazeera English (video, 25 mins)