Volume 6 / Chapter 208
The morning after arriving in New York, Tara came to the apartment.
“Jun, you’ll be pretty busy all morning. We need to start working on preparing promotions.”
“Whew. I trust that you scheduled the least you could.”
“Not the least, but in moderation. Excluding Brussels since it’s a competition, this can be called your debut performance, right? We need to start it in the grandest manner possible and end successfully.”
Jun Hyuk fully understood the management agency’s role until now. The most important thing is to trust each other. All he needs to do is trust Tara and President Stern, and go with them in the direction they lead him.
“What do I need to do?”
“One day for shooting the poster. Clips to insert into a promotional video and the remaining interview. The last interview is with the Korean press.”
Tara stuck a print out of the week’s schedule on the refrigerator so that Jun Hyuk could check it whenever he wanted to.
The photographer in charge of the poster shoot and director taking over the promotional video smiled brightly as soon as they saw Jun Hyuk. They kept saying ‘good’ even as they were in the midst of shooting.
Most conductors are past middle-aged, so they cannot get full shots. It is always hard work because they need to find the angles where they will not shoot their bulging bellies.
Jun Hyuk on the other hand, is optimal for shooting a poster with his tall height and lean body. They were able to finish up easily because they could keep shooting without considering the angles too much.
As America is the magazine heaven, there was a tremendous amount of magazines and media lined up for interviews.
There were the usual magazines with expertise in classical music like Gramophone, The Classic, Symphone, BBC Music, but also those in various genres like pop music like Guitar World, Billboard, Rolling Stones, Jazz Time. There were also the inevitable press like the New York Times.
Fortunately, all of the questions were regarding music and anything beyond that was only about his girlfriend Amelia.
The questions he received most were about his statement on Beethoven and his interpretation of the choral concerto. Rather than compare himself to Beethoven, he made the reporters speechless by delving deeply into Beethoven’s music.
He pointed out the sounds of each instrument in the melody of a certain verse of a particular opus and part, so the reporters did not have the ability to refute or add to this with questions. This depth of conversation is only possible with another conductor.
Interviews with pop music magazines were much easier and more comfortable. They did not care about his statement on Beethoven. Their greatest interest was in his plans in the realm of jazz, rock, and the blues.
There are a lot of fans waiting for Jun Hyuk who had released one jazz album and one heavy metal album before going over to the world of classical.
Yoon Kwang Hun woke up early every morning and ran a lap around the park. He carried out his daily routine, recalling his former life in America.
Once he took a shower and had a light breakfast, he disappeared. Jun Hyuk thought he was touring the city, but knew that could not be right because he had lived in America for a long time.
“But sir, where do you go everyday?”
“Huh? I didn’t tell you? Lincoln Center.”
“Lincoln Center? Why?”
“To watch the rehearsals. New York Philharmonic, New York Pops Orchestra, Opera House. I watch their rehearsals in turn everyday.”
“What? Is that because Maestro Carras said you could go anytime? You have to stop after going once or twice. How could you go everyday?”
“Hey hey! I’m not that much of a wretch. I’m going as someone with a premium membership.”
Yoon Kwang Hun saw that Jun Hyuk was surprised, and waved his hand to tell him not to worry.
“If it’s the premium membership, you’d have to pay quite a lot of money.”
“I was a gold member when I was living in America a long time ago. My records were still there, so they renewed that for me. I didn’t pay as much as I did back then of course, but they made me a premium member even though I gave a little.”
Most symphony orchestras including Korea’s Seoul Philharmonic provide more services with membership support registration.
General members are those who have purchased for the regular performance season. Season passes are discounted by as much as 50%. Premium members are those who have paid more than the amount for the regular performance season in donations.
Premium members have the privilege of going to rehearsals whenever they want to. They can watch from afar in the empty seats or watch from outside the room. Higher members are able to go backstage.
“Do you know what privilege the person who pays the most for the New York Philharmonic gets?”
“Privilege? There are things like that?”
“Yeah. You’re going to be amazed when you hear.”
“What is it?”
Yoon Kwang Hun looked at Jun, who was full of curiosity, and looked as if he were telling a secret.
“If it’s the New York Philharmonic, you have to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to become the top member. That member… goes on stage for the winter concert.”
“Huh? Is that true? Does that person watch the performance on stage?”
“No. If it’s the winter concert, of course it’s Beethoven’s choral symphony.”
“Yes. Most are.”
“That person becomes someone playing an instrument.”
“No way. How can a normal person perform?”
What kinds of people are the orchestra members? They are professionals who would receive hundreds of dollars per hour of lessons. There is no way that someone would be allowed to stand among these people just by paying a lot of money.
“No. The person really does go on stage with an instrument. It’s the triangle.”
The triangle is a very important instrument in the 4th part of the choral symphony. It blends in with the piccolo and that soft sound is superb. It is also an instrument that someone can handle as a runner with enough practice.
“He he. Of course not just anyone does it. They put the sponsor among the top class that they want, on stage.”
“Do you want to try it too?”
“No. I don’t think I could do it. I might die of a heart attack.”
Yoon Kwang Hun is waving his hand, but his expression showed that he was already imagining himself holding the triangle.
“The Korean press and broadcast interview has been decided. 20 minutes joint conference. An exclusive interview for 1 hour.”
“1 hour? What do I do for an hour?”
If there are 3 broadcasts, it is a total of 3 hours. Jun Hyuk’s head hurt.
“Don’t worry. Instead, it’s just 1 place. There will only be questions on music. There will be bits and pieces of what happened in Salzburg and Brussels, but do it comfortably because there won’t be awkward questions.”
The cumbersome is over after this interview tomorrow. Laura Goldberg, who is still in Brussels for gala concerts, will be coming back to New York after 2 or 3 days.
There is 1 month until rehearsals with the New York Philharmonic start. Thinking of the fun he will have writing music during that time, he could not wait to be done with the interview.
“Oh right. Since we don’t know Korean, your lawyer Catherine Lim will also be present. She’ll end it right away if something weird comes up.”
“Then what about you, Tara?”
“Of course I’ll be there too. If there’s anything you need while you’re doing the interview, just tell me. And I was going to ask for the questions in advance, but didn’t. You can just interview confidently as you’ve been doing.”
Watching Jun Hyuk interview, Tara had seen that Jun Hyuk is capable of getting through the questions as long as they are professional. They no longer need to avoid the press.
“But who’s the exclusive interview with?”
Jun Hyuk had been thinking that the exclusive had been with a music magazine, and frowned.
“Tara. There are a lot of cases with Korean broadcasting stations where comedians conduct the interviews.”
“Yeah. There are a lot of cases where they aren’t professional and only ask about gossip or overdo it to force laughter.”
“That’s included in the conditions too. The interviewer needs to have knowledge about music. We’ll cut it as soon as it starts looking like a comedy talk show. You don’t have to worry about it.”
While Tara was reassuring Jun Hyuk, the doorbell rang. When she checked the monitor at the entrance and opened the door, lawyer Lim So Mi came in.
“Hey Jun Hyuk. It’s been a while for us, hasn’t it?”
“Mrs. Lim. How have you been?”
Lim So Mi seemed to be surprised with the changes in Jun Hyuk.
“You change drastically every year. You’re conducting the New York Philharmonic now? At this rate, you’ll be a standing conductor by next year. Anyway, you’re really impressive. Really.”
“Maestro Carras is still alive and well. I’m pretty sure he’ll stick around for another 10 years.”
“Oh. Do you have it picked out as your spot in 10 years?”
Lim So Mi laughed as she looked around.
“But how about Mr. Yoon? He’s not here? We only spoke over the phone and haven’t met before…..”
“No. He’s stamping his time card at Lincoln Center.”
“Yes. He’s living for the fun of watching orchestra rehearsals.”
Tara was watching them speak for a while in Korean when she spoke up,
“Catherine. Thank you for helping us like this.”
“It’s nothing. This is part of my job too. It’s alright.”
“The interview tomorrow will be conducted in Korean, so we really need for you to be able to react quickly.”
“Looking at the interview on BBC’s homepage, he’s an expert now. I think he’ll do really well. I’ll just translate for you Tara…..”
There is just one thing that the two of them are worried about. Often, there are reporters who throw provocative questions to try to raise emotions and get a scoop. They just have to prevent Jun Hyuk from giving harsh responses.