Jinjoo Cho

Gold Medalist of the Ninth Quadrennial International Violin Competition of the Indianapolis, critically acclaimed violinist Jinjoo Cho has established herself as a leading young violinist of her generation noted for her vibrant musical personality, warm and engaging tone, and sensual phrasing.  Praised by the Times Argus of Montreal as possessing “an undeniable charisma and depth...with an intense lyricism and heartfelt tenderness that sent shivers up the spine,” Jinjoo won both the First Grand Prize and Radio Canada’s People’s Choice Award in the 2006 Montreal International Musical Competition.  Ever since, she has been performing worldwide, and has won numerous international awards including the First Prize and Orchestra Award at the Buenos Aires International Violin Competition in 2010, 2nd Laureate at the 2011 Isang Yun International Music Competition, and the First Grand Prize at the Alice Schoenfeld International String Competition.

Jinjoo’s music career has taken her throughout North and South America, Asia, and Europe, performing as a soloist with such prestigious orchestras as The Cleveland Orchestra,Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional (Argentina), Louisville Orchestra, Victoria Symphony, and Hartford Symphony Orchestra.  Jinjoo has appeared in international venues and festivals including Carnegie Hall, Severance Hall, the Herkulessaal of Munich, the historic Teatro Colón of Buenos Aires, Seoul Arts Center, Aspen Music Festival, Schwetzingen SWR Festipiele, Festival de Lanaudière, Cleveland Chamberfest, Festival Groba, the Seoul Spring Festival, Music@Menlo and Perlman Music Program.  She has been privileged to collaborate with renowned artists Kent Nagano, Peter Oundjian, Michael Stern, James Gaffigan, Robert McDuffie, Jaime Laredo, Sharon Robinson, Paul Neubauer, Roger Tapping and Anton Nel among others. 

Jinjoo has served as an Artist in Residence at The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts and has toured extensively in Canada, Argentina and Korea.  Most recently, she has formed Duo Istas with pianist Daniel H.S Kim.  The duo was invited to take part in the Chamber Music Residency Program at The Banff Centre and regularly tours in North America with intensely creative programs that include works that are seldom played and/or newly composed repertoire.  A passionate advocate for community outreach and education, Jinjoo has performed at over 100 venues, giving master classes, presenting showcases, and delivering lecture recitals.  Some of her outreach locations have included hospice care facilities, schools for mentally handicapped children, inner city public schools and even an historically isolated island for leprosy patients. Her ties to the Cleveland community are especially apparent as she performs often for local organizations such as the Cleveland Women’s Orchestra, the Beachwood Arts Council, the Cleveland Clinic, the Women’s Committee at CIM, Arts Renaissance Tremont, the Tuesday Musical Association of Akron, CityMusic Cleveland, and more.  Jinjoo and Daniel’s Duo Istas performs more than 40 concerts a year in education venues alone.

Born in Seoul, Korea, Jinjoo moved to Cleveland, Ohio at the age of 14 to study at the Cleveland Institute of Music as a Young Artist Program student.  Within a few years of arriving in the United States, she had won most of the local competitions for both high school and collegiate level students, including the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra’s concerto competition and the Cleveland Institute of Music’s collegiate level concerto competition.  One of the jurors at the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra competition was the legendary oboist John Mac, who later became very closely tied to Jinjoo’s musical development.  In 2005, at age 16, she was awarded the gold medal at the Stulberg International String Competition, her first international competition and in the following year, Jinjoo became the first recipient of the Dorothy DeLay Award at the Aspen Music Festival.  Additionally Jinjoo served as concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra and later, the New York String Orchestra Seminar.  The New York Times described her concertmaster solos as “rich and open...finely polished, (and) focused.”

Jinjoo’s chamber music coaches have included Gilbert Kalish, Itzhak Perlman, Donald Weilerstein, Peter Salaff, David Finckel, Wu Han, Mark Steinberg, and the Cavani Quartet.  She has also participated in masterclasses given by the Takács Quartet, Arnold Steinhardt, Peter Wiley, Samuel Rhodes and Zakhar Bron, with whom she worked at Kronberg Academy’s Masterclasses Program.  Jinjoo finished her Bachelor of Music degree both at the Curtis Institute of Music and the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM) with Joseph Silverstein, Pamela Frank, and Paul Kantor, who has been her mentor since 2001.  Jinjoo received her Master of Music degree at CIM with Jaime Laredo where she is in the Professional Studies program.