Born in Korea, Jiyoung Ko is a Michigan based composer of orchestral, chamber, and vocal music. Her music is poetic and full of vibrant passages and picturesque images. She often takes inspiration from everyday life and weaves it into music. Her compositions encompass a wide range of styles - from cutting edge to traditional - which are relatable to both the ordinary and professional listener. One of her pieces was described as a “brilliant study in timbre, tone, and color…a haunting piece.” (AB Newswire) Ms. Ko has a reputation for creating works of art that often linger with listeners long after the music ends.
Her work has been performed in the United States, South Korea, Japan, and Germany by various ensembles and orchestras, including the Grand Rapids Symphony, Dal Niente, Del Sol String Quartet, New York New Music Ensemble, Contemporary Music Ensemble Korea, NEC Honors Ensemble and KNUA Chamber Ensemble.
Most recently, Ko was a finalist of the League of American Orchestras’ Women Composers Readings and Commissions Program supported by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation in 2019. Her orchestral work, Remembrances, was selected by the American Composers Orchestra’s EarShot New Music Readings for a performance by the Grand Rapids Symphony in 2018, and she was the ArtPrize 10 Public Vote winner for her entry.
She was also selected for the 2018 Civic Orchestra of Chicago New Music Workshop with coaching by the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) at Chicago’s Symphony Center. In 2017, her orchestral work, Spring Overture, was mentioned as an alternate for the Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute. Other honors include winning Honors Ensemble at The New England Conservatory and an award for a String Quartet competition featuring Del Sol String Quartet.
Ko has been a fellow at the June In Buffalo Music Festival, Pacific Rim Music Festival, and NONG Music Festival, and participated in master classes with Unsuk Chin, John Harbison, Donald Crockett, Krzysztof Penderecki. She received her master’s degree from The New England Conservatory and her bachelor’s degree from Korea National University of Arts where she studied with Michael Gandolfi and Geonyoug Lee. Outside of her musical endeavors, she enjoys literature, making espresso, and camping with her husband and young son.