When Truth Prevails, Mountain Music & a Grammy Nom

It’s a relatively quiet morning at the Schiphol Airport – an airport that I have a strange fondness for, it having been where I spent an unexpected but wonderfully adventurous 17-hour layover back in my teenage days – as I sit with the BBC to my right and an espresso machine gurgling to my left.  Another long stretch has passed since I’ve written here, and there is much to share, so I won’t dilly-dally any longer (except to say I’m already dreaming of the Parisian croissant that awaits me in two days time) –

As we navigate through a time in our culture – both at home and abroad – when truth seems optional and so much appears backward, it shines a particularly radiant light when things go right.  As I find myself exiting the most arduous 18-month stretch of my life, I can’t help but feel immense gratitude for the five women who took time out of their busy lives to dive deep and set a maliciously spinning sphere back in orbit.  There is still a long journey ahead as things worth fighting for are never a simple nor brief endeavor, but when things have been wrong for so long, justice – albeit interstitial for now – is powerful.

To the people who have provided the container for me to heal, for those who rebuilt my courage and strength, and the five women – representing all those doing just things in the world – I thank you.  I leave you with these words from our greatest political and cultural leaders that I came across in the past months:

“It is difficult for the common good to prevail against the intense concentration of those who have a special interest, especially if the decisions are made behind locked doors.” – Jimmy Carter

“Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pain to bring it to light.” – George Washington

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” – RBG

“I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels.  Life’s a bitch.  You’ve got to go out and kick ass.” – Maya Angelou

And now, from stunning student recitals at Cornell amidst back-to-back blizzards up in Ithaca to family holiday time in Europe, concerts in Minneapolis and at the Lincoln Center Atrium to quartet tours in Dublin, North Carolina and the mountains of Vermont – and now, a Blueprinting Grammy nomination, I leave you here with a photo diary:


Taking advantage of our last nice weekend in Ithaca – a ride in my dreamy new car (whose name is now Azi) – up the Cayuga Lake shore to Americana Vineyards with dear friend Amy McCune =)
Post-e concert with the venerated John Harbison, celebrating his 80th year!
Post-CMSM concert birthday party for Papa Kim, here showing off his favorite gift of the annual Bethe House t-shirt =)
Back to U Mich we go! The Aizuris giving a lecture/panel discussion with students and faculty at the U-M School of Music, Theater, and Dance EXCEL Lab

Pre-UMS Concert Series quartet show, taking a moment with dear friends SuPa and Francie Kang, and Megan Rohrer
Blueprinting CD release show @ National Sawdust!  (photo: Jill Steinberg)

CD release show after-party with the whole Aizuri crew (plus composers Paul and Lembit!) and dear Cornell friends Jane & Scott MacDonald and Patty Keller =)
And more Bethe House love with our fearless leader Erica, hubby Jason and little Halloween-ready dino Ira!


Scrag Mountain Music Residency! Up into the glorious mountains of Vermont we went for concerts with co-directors Evan Premo and Mary Bonhag, and surrounding ourselves with amazing people and incredible food -thank you, Green Mountain Girls Farm =)
An AQ student composer workshop residency at Ramapo College – post-concert selfie with all of the fabulous student composers and their teacher, Gilad Cohen

An Irish Thanksgiving – workshopping Donnacha Dennehy‘s new chamber opera in Dublin over Thanksgiving weekend…


…and a quick overnight stop in Leipzig for a belated Thanksgiving with my two baby bros (Daniel was on an exchange program working in the Leipzig Gewandhaus for the semester) – visited Bach’s tomb, and got great seats to Die Zauberflöte with D playing in the pit!

Annual family concert @ the CMSM – Basil made his on-stage debut…seatbelt and baby-bear chair in all =)
Castillero! One of my favorite annual traditions – volunteering with Scott Krijnen and his blow-you-away public school orchestra students at Castillero Middle School in San Jose, CA
Scott with Trudy and Larry Rankin, who have bestowed upon a cherished Castillero student each year, the use of their late son Corry’s cello =)

Taking a minute to go meet two lovely new creatures born in the Bay, baby Olivia and baby Rafa!
Lincoln Center Atrium show with Ljova and friends!


Quartet time back under the metal ear – an intensive recording week @ the Academy of Arts and Letters capturing the chamber music of Ilari Kaila

Indiegogo perk vinyl album shippage command-central (my NYC living room!)…
…and my Chrisma-Diwa-Nukh-Kwanz “tree” =)

Christmastime with the family in Sweden (that’s a giant 1000-piece New Yorker cover art puzzle…’twas quite the feat)…
And my disastrous Christmas dinner…bought a whole bunch of gorgeous Swedish salmon thinking it was fresh…and ’twas smoked =/
Happy wedding (and awesomely sweaty dance party) to Josh and Maggie!

Men at work…the Kim boys making traditional Korean mandoo for our dduk-gook feast…could I just quit everything so that I can cook/eat all day. everyday?

And a bow to the grandparents and elders to ring in 2019

Holiday time with friends Naomi Krasner, Mary Bolkcom, the Harris family and the Chen-Lou family =)


Basil and I headed out on the open road, yet again…
“Lucky 3/13” – happily reuniting with Juilliard doctoral classmates (Lucky 13, Class of 2020) Ann and Yves at the 2019 CMA Conference!

BLIZZARD TIME UPSTATE! That’s my backyard in Ithaca…

…so I ran away to the beach for the weekend =P
Back on the road – an extended weekend in North Carolina, AQ master class in Wilmington

Back to Cornell for student recitals (congrtaulations, Emily, Adeline and Julie!) and Bethe House Dinner hangin’ with cutie pie baby Seth =)


…partying at the New York City Grammy Nominee Reception!  (Yeah, that’s a practice red carpet…)

Next up is a European tour with The Knights with a crazy (but of course I had to) jaunt to LA for the Grammys – Poland, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland – highlights will surely include concerts at the Vienna Musikverein and Hamburg Elbphilharmonie…

Happy 2019!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *