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David Kim - Behind the Scenes

October 03, 2012

David Kim Concertmaster

Each month in the Orchestra’s Playbill, we feature one musician in a question-and-answer segment. Below is that feature in its entirety.

Where were you born? Carbondale, IL. My parents were grad students at the time at Southern Illinois University.

What piece of music could you play over and over again? A couple of works by Richard Strauss come to mind: Four Last Songs, the Suite from Der Rosenkavalier.

What is your most treasured possession? I try not to get too caught up in material things. That being said, I do love my Dominique Peccatte violin bow. Peccatte was one of the great bow makers of all time. Every time I play it I think to myself, “Like buttah …”

What’s in your instrument case? I go minimalist. No photos of the kids, no love notes from the wife—just a cake of rosin, an extra bow and strings, and a couple of Sharpies for signing autographs.

What’s your favorite Philadelphia restaurant? There is a Korean tofu restaurant in North Philly called Jong Ka Jib that is awesome. My family loves that place—as do most Koreans who live in Philadelphia!

When did you join the Orchestra? 1999.

If you could ask one composer one question who would it be and what would you ask? I would ask Mozart if he felt moved to tears when he composed certain pieces as I am when I experience them.

What piece of music never fails to move you? Most works by my favorite composer, Richard Strauss. I also adore anything by Mahler.

Do you play any other instruments? Nope. I’ve always wanted to play the piano—especially jazz—but that’ll never happen. I play piano like I type … with two fingers.

What’s your favorite type of food? Korean, followed by Mexican, then Japanese (sushi).

What book are you currently reading? Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef.

Do you speak any other languages? Korean. I read and write like a kindergartener but my speaking is not bad. I can teach and conduct interviews in Korean.

Do you follow any blogs? No, but I am an enthusiastic Twitter guy. I follow nearly a hundred people and organizations from all walks of life—musicians, media outlets, chefs, pro athletes, travel experts, daily bible verses.

Do you have any hobbies? I am a wine lover, a passionate golfer (handicap 14), and an avid deer hunter.

Do you have a favorite movie? A few: Babette’s Feast, The Big Chill, and Jerry Maguire.

Is there a piece of music that isn’t in the standard orchestral repertoire that should be? That’s a toughie. We do so much repertoire that I feel there is not much that we don’t cover at some point.

What’s the last recording you purchased—CD or download? Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 4, Gergiev conducting the Kirov Orchestra.

Kim Photo by Ryan Donnell

Bottom: The interior of Concertmaster David Kim's violin case.

Read other "Musicians Behind the Scenes" Playbill features.