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Kim, Eun Sun

Eun Sun Kim(Seoul, South Korea)

San Francisco Opera Highlights: Conductor, Il Trovatore, Lohengrin, Madame Butterfly, Antony and Cleopatra; Dialogues of the Carmelites; La Traviata; Rusalka; ToscaFidelioThe Centennial CelebrationEun Sun Kim Conducts Verdi; Live and In Concert: The HomecomingAdler Fellows Concert: The Future Is Now

Korean conductor Eun Sun Kim is the Caroline H. Hume Music Director of San Francisco Opera, where she began her tenure in 2021. She made her highly anticipated Company debut conducting Rusalka in 2019. Her presence in North America was first established with performances of Verdi's Requiem with the Cincinnati Symphony and La Traviata with Houston Grand Opera, with the latter earning her an appointment as Principal Guest Conductor.

She is a regular guest conductor at the world’s most important opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, Vienna State Opera, Munich's Bavarian State Opera, Semperoper Dresden, Berlin State Opera, and Milan's Teatro alla Scala. On the heels of Ms. Kim’s Met debut, The New York Times recognized her as Classical Music’s Breakout Star.

In the 2023–24 season, Kim continues a series of high-profile debuts, conducting the Berlin Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra and Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. She also makes her first appearances at the Paris Opera, leading Les Contes d'Hoffmann and the Maria Callas Centenary. Elsewhere, she conducts Parsifal at Houston Grand Opera and additional concerts with Colorado Symphony, Duisburger Philharmoniker, Filarmonica Teatro Regio Torino, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, and Orquestra Simfònica Barcelona. 

Kim’s recent orchestral engagements include Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France, Gothenburg Symphony, and Seoul Philharmonic. She has also conducted European orchestras in Bonn, Madrid, Malmö, Marseille, Milan, Lille, Nancy, Oslo, Palermo, Stuttgart, Turin, and Santiago de Compostela. In North America, her debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic was quickly followed by engagements with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Toronto Symphony, Seattle Symphony, and Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Her collaboration with the National Brass Ensemble, including a new arrangement of Wagner’s Ring cycle, has just been released by Pentatone on the album Deified.

With a growing North American presence, she has enjoyed operatic successes at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Los Angeles Opera, Washington National Opera, and Houston Grand Opera.

Kim maintains close connections in Europe, where she has recently conducted La Bohème at Teatro alla Scala and Vienna State Opera, a staged Verdi Requiem with Dutch National Opera, Carmen at Opernhaus Zürich, and Hänsel und Gretel at the Bavarian State Opera. She has been frequently engaged by Berlin State Opera, Frankfurt Opera, Royal Swedish Opera, Royal Danish Opera, and, and has celebrated successes in such varied repertoire as Ariadne auf Naxos, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, La Bohème, Die Csárdásfürstin, The Count of Luxembourg, Der Fliegende Holländer, Madama Butterfly, Un Ballo in Maschera, La Sonnambula, La Traviata, and Il Trovatore.

Kim studied composition and conducting in her hometown of Seoul, South Korea, before continuing her studies in Stuttgart, where she graduated with distinction. Directly after graduation, she was awarded First Prize in the International Jesús López-Cobos Opera Conducting Competition at the Teatro Real Madrid.