Soprano  Chon Wolson

Member of the Nikikai Opera Company (Japan)

A 2nd generation Korean resident in Japan, Chon Wolson was born in Tokyo.
Her name means “moon daffodil”. The name comes from her mother’s dream in which she saw a beautiful daffodil blooming on a lake under the light of a full moon.

A dramatic voice and an imposing stage presence

Chon made her debut in a series of recitals in 1983. Her first performance in opera was in 1985 in Japan, when she sang the leading part in two operas - La Voix Humaine (Poulenc), and L'heure espagnole . She later went on to sing leading parts in Le Nozze di Figaro (Mozart), The Turn of the Screw Britten), I Pagliacci (Leoncavallo), Madama Butterfly (Puccini), Salome (R Strauss), Carmen (Bizet), La Traviata (Verdi) and other operas, receiving high critical acclaim. Today, she continues to perform in operas not only in Asia but also in European countries. She has also received rave reviews for her concert performance with orchestras of Japan, South Korea and many other countries.

She has a number of self-produced works in which she played the leading part as well. She participated in the Japan Art Festival with the following works, in which she combined the elements of contemporary music with vocals: Le Roman de la Rose in 1997, Crossing the Barrie in 1999, an opera incorporating the style of chamber music, Chunhyang in 2002, a South Korean traditional opera, Where Do We Go? in 1998, a musical play.

Her original style of singing Korean lyric songs has been highly evaluated since her debut, and she is known worldwide as an authority in this field. She frequently appears on the mass media as an expert on the music of South and North Korea as well as ethnic Koreans overseas.

She appeared in a number of TV programs such as “Open Concert,” “Gallery Seat,” “Cultural Exploration” of the South Korean national Korea Broadcasting Station (KBS), “Success Age,” “Evening of the Lylic Song,” “Concert on Sunday” on Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation, “Classic Hour” of NHK, “Special LIVE on NEWS23,” “Sunday Morning” both on the Japan’s Tokyo Broadcast Sytem Inc. (TBS), and other programs of Fuji Television Network, TV Asahi, TV Tokyo.

Marking the 20th anniversary of her debut, a special 90 minutes-long program titled “The diva who crossed the strait – 20 years of the Korean singer in Japan,” featuring Wolson’s career was broadcast on the Japanese national broadcasting station NHK in July 2004.

A diva who crossed the strait

In 1985, she held a solo vocal performance in Pyongyang. In 1994 she performed the leading part in Carmen (Bizet)(director: Flavio Trevisan) in an event held in Seoul Opera House to commemorate the founding of the city as the capital of Korea. This performance made Wolson the first Korean artist to perform in both North and South Korea.

In October 1998, Wolson was appointed by the governor of Tokyo as its good-will ambassdor to Seoul. She became the first singer in decades to sing songs in Japanese during an event commemorating the Tokyo-Seoul Sister City 10th Anniversary in the South Korean capital, where Japanese songs were prohiited.
Wolson singing Love of Country, which is an appeal for peace between the North and South. Documentary programs created about these concerts were broadcast on the South Korean national TV KBS on “Sunday Special” as well as in Japan. In 1996, Wolson sang Love of Country on South Korea's New Year's eve program, marking the first time the program featured a live performance. Later, she gave recitals in several South Korean cities.

She sang solo or played a leading part in many official events commemorating Japan and South Korea co-hosting the 2002 FIFA World Cup Soccer Tournament such as “Japan-Korea Friendship Concert - From Asia to the World” (Suntory Hall, Tokyo); the Japan and Korea gala concert “Crossing the Sea” (Tokyo Opera City), Japan-South Korean joint opera Chun Hyangjeon based on a famous Korean tale, singing the national anthem before the match and at the welcome event of South Korean President Kim Dae Jung organized by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi at the Prime Minister’s Official Residence.


 Chon Wolson

Chon Wolson officilal Website