Soo Yeon Lyuh

haegeum player

Soo Yeon Lyuh is a haegeum (Korean two-string bowed instrument) player, composer, and improviser currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Rigorously trained in court and folk repertoire from a young age, Lyuh is known for her masterful performances of new compositions for the haegeum. In South Korea, she served as a member of the National Gugak Center for 12 years. 

Deeply invested in exploring new musical possibilities via improvisation, she has collaborated with Roscoe Mitchell, Wadada Leo Smith, Fred Frith, Joan Jeanrenaud and numerous other diverse international performers and composers. Lyuh has performed renowned contemporary and experimental concerts in festivals and venues all over the world, including the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival (MASS MoCA), Ecstatic Music Festival (The Greene Space at WQXR, New York), as a featured soloist with UC Berkeley Symphony orchestra on tour (Spain), Isang Yun Music Festival (North Korea), Büyükşehir Belediyesi Sanat ve Kültür Sarayı (Turkey), Siri Fort Auditorium (India) and the Seoul Arts Center (South Korea), among others. Lyuh has recorded multiple CDs of Korean court music, jazz, and improvisation, and featured on an improvisational recording with Henry Kaiser, William Winant, Bill Laswell, Rudresh Mahanthappa, and Simon Barker.

Lyuh holds a BA, MA, and DMA in Korean Musicology from Seoul National University where she taught for six years. She was a visiting scholar at Mills College (2017-2018), UC Berkeley (2015-2016), and University of Hawai’i at Manoa (2011-2012). Lyuh seeks to continually expand contemporary haegeum possibilities through work with new media and technology.