Sang Mee Lee

On faculty at the Music Institute of Chicago, SANG MEE LEE will be joining Center Stage Strings for the first time this summer as Director of Chamber Music. Sang Mee is Artist Faculty in Violin at the Music Institute of Chicago, where she also serves as chair of the strings department. A graduate of The Juilliard School, Sang Mee earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Violin Performance. Her teachers and mentors over the years include Dorothy DeLay, Masao Kawasaki, Hyo Kang, Kyung-Wha Chung, Josef Suk, Felix Galimir, Samuel Sanders, Roland and Almita Vamos, Robert Lipsett, Josef Gingold, and Victor Aitay. Sang Mee also served as Adjunct Lecturer in Music at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, and from 2005 to 2007, was also on the chamber music faculty at Northwestern University.

Hailed as a “rising star” by the Korean Broadcasting System and “first among equals” by the Boston Globe, Sang Mee Lee has won top prizes at the Tibor Varga International Violin Competition, Leopold Mozart International Violin Competition, Irving M. Klein International String Auditions, Seventeen Magazine/General Motors Concerto Competition, William C. Byrd Competition, and the Julius Stulberg Auditions. Sang Mee has been heard in concert halls around the world including the Berlin Philharmonie, Alice Tully Hall, and Chicago’s Symphony Center. She has performed extensively in the United States as well as Europe and Asia, both in recital and as soloist, debuting in New York, Chicago, Stuttgart, Baden-Baden, Berlin and Seoul, South Korea. She has performed as guest soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, and Korean Broadcasting Symphony among others, collaborating with such luminaries as Erich Leinsdorf, Sir Yehudi Menuhin, and Mstislav Rostropovich.

A frequent chamber musician, Sang Mee has performed and collaborated with musicians from around the world including members of the New York and Berlin Philharmonics and musicians of the National, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Los Angeles Chamber, Seattle, and Chicago Symphonies. Sang Mee performs frequently in Chicago, on WFMT, and has collaborated with members of new music ensembles ICE, Fulcrum Point, Anaphora, and Eighth Blackbird. A fervent champion of new music, Sang Mee has worked with composers Jennifer Higdon, Augusta Read Thomas, Howard Sandroff, and Zhou Long. Festival appearances include performances at the Aspen Music, Blossom, Hot Springs, Ravinia, and Highlands Chamber Music Festivals among others. She has also performed on the Chamber Music Series at Tannery Pond and the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Series in Chicago.

Sang Mee can be heard on Cedille Records’ world premiere recording of previously unknown works for piano trio by Beethoven with pianist George Lepauw and cellist Wendy Warner. Her most recent release, also on Cedille Records, is a disk of small chamber works including newly commissioned pieces by composer Mischa Zupko. An Honorary Member of the International Music Fraternity of Delta Omicron, Sang Mee was named one of the 50 Most Influential Persons of Korean descent by Newsweek Korea in 2009 and plays on a rare 1739 Carlo Bergonzi violin on generous loan from the Stradivari Society of Chicago.