Kern plays in Korea on 3rd visitContemporary pianist and composer Kevin Kern is known as a musician who creates simple, melancholy tunes that tug at the heartstrings. The artist is also veiled in mystery as he was born legally blind and numerous sources, including his Web site, state he was recognized as a child prodigy when only 18-months-old after playing “Silent Night” on the piano. At 4, he played the piano competently and at 8, he began writing music.
Kern studied at the University of Michigan’s School of Music with pianist Mischa Kottler, then went on to earn a Masters of Performance and a Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory of Music. Upon leaving school, he settled in Boston where he was involved in the local music scene for 10 years.
His life took a 180-degree turn in 1995 when the president and founder of the new-age record label Real Music, Terence Yallop, discovered Kern while he was playing the piano at a hotel in San Francisco and signed him. “In the Enchanted Garden,” his first CD, was well-received by critics and new-age, classical and jazz audiences. His 1997 album, “Beyond the Sundial,” went into the top ten of the Billboard new-age charts, securing his reputation with music fans.
His popularity in Korea is often compared to new age pianist George Winston’s success here during the 1990s. Kern will perform for the third time in Korea on May 24, at the Seoul Arts Center in southern Seoul, to promote his seventh album, “Imagination’s Light,” released in July, 2005, and his “Best of” album “More than Words.” In Korea, Kern gained commercial success through his songs “Return to Love,” which was featured in the TV drama “Autumn Fable,” and “Le Jardin,” featured in a TV commercial for the drink Caffe Latte. During this concert, guitarist Steve Erguiaga and others will accompany the pianist.
by Cho Jae-eun
Kevin Kern will play in the main concert hall of the Seoul Arts Center on May 24. Tickets range from 30,000 to 80,000 won ($32-$85). The nearest subway station is Nambu Bus Terminal station line No. 3, exit 5. For more information, call (02) 598-8277 or visit www.sac.or.kr.