Literary Programme 2017

Min Kym

Min Kym
(Gone - A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung)

Min Kym

Maritime Hotel

Mon 17 July 2017



Min Kym will be in conversation with Evelyn Grant of Lyric FM and Min will play a couple of violin pieces connected with her story.

All my life my Stradivarius had been waiting for me, as I had been waiting for her…

At seven years old Min Kym was a prodigy, the youngest ever pupil at the Purcell School of Music. At 11 she won her first international prize. She worked with many violins, waiting for the day she would play ‘the one’. At 21 she found it: a rare 1696 Stradivarius, perfectly suited to her build and temperament. Her career soared. She recorded the Brahms concerto and a world tour was planned.

Then, in a train station café, her violin was stolen. In an instant her world collapsed. She descended into a terrifying limbo land, unable to play another note.

This is Min’s extraordinary story - of a young woman staring into the void, wondering who she was, who she had been. It is a story of isolation and dependence, of love, loss and betrayal, and the intense, almost human bond that a musician has with their instrument. Above all it’s a story of hope through a journey back to music.

‘Intense, elegiac and completely mesmerizing… a beautifully pitched memoir which hits many different registers.’The Bookseller (Book of the Month)

‘Reads like a dream – so fast, so sharp. I loved Gone. It will stay with me for a long time.’Cerys Matthews

The hours fell away as I read this spellbinding tale of love, loss, and above all devotion to art.’Susan Cain, author of Quiet

South Korean born and raised in the UK, Min Kym began playing the violin at the age of 6. At 7 she was accepted as the youngest ever pupil at the Purcell School of Music; at 16 she was the youngest ever foundation scholar at the Royal College of Music. The legendary conductor George Solti said she had ‘exceptional natural talent, mature musicality and mastery of the violin’. Her Sony recording of the Brahms Violin Concerto with Sir Andrew Davis and the Philharmonia Orchestra was released in 2010. She was the first ever recipient of the Heifetz Prize, and is a goodwill ambassador for the city of Seoul.

Min’s photo is by Orli Rose