SHIN Nal Sae: A graceful Korean Fiddle musician – incarnation of Oriental painting

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SHIN Nal Sae is a well-known Korean Fiddle (in native tongue, Haegeum) musician who is widely loved by audiences for maintaining the instrument’s lyrical and appealing sound while harmonizing oriental beauty of negative space with tenderness and familiar tone of Western classical music.

SHIN Nal Sae, who has been playing Korean Fiddle from early age, creates pure and soft sound, beautifully delineating Korean Fiddle’s unique poignancy, which makes her one of the most popular Korean Fiddle musicians.

Her name, Nal Sae, which means ‘Newly everyday’, was given by her Father.

Influenced by her father, a Korean classical music aficionado, she grew in close proximity to such music. She studied in Gukak (Korean classical music) National Middle School, Gukak National High School, and Korean National University of Arts.

She already received many awards from Music competition Nationwide for Youths, including first place at the Gukak Concert held by Korean Classical Music Association. Now she is spreading her beautiful music in Korea and Overseas.

Her first full-length Album [Haegeum in Melodies] was released when she was in College at Korean National University of Arts. It was an instant success and gave her fame and prominence.

The album was produced by Kim Yun, a pianist and composer who produced the Korean Fiddle theme of famous Korean soap opera ‘Toe-ji’, and was collaborated by Ham Choon-ho, an eminent guitarist. A crossover-style album that is loved to this day, it is filled cover to cover with splendid harmonies of Nal Sae’s graceful rendering of Korean Fiddle and other Western instruments such as piano, cello, and guitar.

Especially, the track ‘Wild Rose’ and ‘What a Wonderful World’ were a refreshing shock to traditional Korean Fiddle music, a transcendence above existing presumptions and boundaries.

Her second album [Haegeum in PARADISO], also produced by Kim Yun and collaborated with Ham Choon-ho, was a big success as well.

This album includes Western classical music (Les Larmes de Jacqueline), Greek folk song (To Treno Fevgi Stis Okto), Korean pop (Violet), Film Music, etc. and it’s widely loved for its diversity of genre and superb renderings. The Korean Fiddle – guitar duet tracks ‘Cinema Paradiso – Love Theme’ and ‘Cavatina’ are noted for their marked silence and restrained emotion, both of which emphasize Korean Fiddle’s sorrowful sound and arouse more powerful emotion.

She has continuously progressed to new musical grounds, releasing project album “Korean Fiddle… meets Piano” and holding concert with Jeong Jin-hee, a pianist of Orientango, a team well-known for tango music. She also held charity concert “Concert of Sharing” with pianist Jeong Gyeo-wool and released a relevant album.

She is putting sharing into action by holding charity performances for deaf children

SHIN Nal Sae’s charity concert was first introduced as part of open broadcasting of her Apple Podcast broadcast. However, it became something more when people put their hearts together aiming to do a meaningful work, and grew to the idea of supporting deaf children with hearing aid devices, enabling them to listen to beautiful sounds and grow happily. The concert series officially began in April 2012 and has been donating its entire profits in supporting hearing aids.

* Written by Dr Arnold Choi, Edited by Saab Choi