“I will live my life only for the sake of music” Yunchan Lim


Decca Classics is delighted to announce the exclusive signing of South Korean pianist Yunchan Lim, after following him across the globe for his much sought-after signature. International record company executives travelled to Tokyo, Paris, Amsterdam, Rome, London, New York and Seoul to meet with Yunchan and bring him to the legendary label.

It was last year that the then 18-year-old “stunned the music world” (The New York Times) and made history by becoming the youngest ever winner of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in Texas. Yunchan’s final performance of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 not only moved the conductor, Marin Alsop, to tears on stage, but skyrocketed on YouTube, trending at #24 globally and garnering over 12 million views, making it the most-watched rendition of the work on the platform. Critics also praised the astounding interpretation stating he was an “immediate sensation” and, “a star was born” (The New York Times).

Yunchan hit the headlines, was catapulted to stardom beyond the classical world and became a national hero in Korea overnight. The media buzz and fan reaction continued, with listeners describing Yunchan’s playing as “life-changing”. His success so far, coupled with his magnetic stage presence, has inspired a cult following worldwide – sparking multiple fan pages and his face printed on unofficial T-shirts – and he has been referred to by the press as “classical music’s answer to K-pop”.

Here is a musician who transcends boundaries and seeks to connect with audiences on a profound level. The Critic aptly reports, “Yunchan plays the notes – all of them – as pathways to a surreal elsewhere” as International Piano states the teenager has “the whole world in his hands”.

Yunchan’s ascent in the world of classical music has been meteoric and the young pianist is busier than ever, with his upcoming Carnegie Hall debut and performances with the Boston Symphony OrchestraOrchestre de Paris alongside label-mate Klaus Mäkelä, and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with Music Director Vasily Petrenko.

Critics and audiences alike have been consistently enchanted by Yunchan Lim’s performances. From his captivating appearances at renowned stages including the David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center and the Hollywood Bowl, to his celebrated London debut at Wigmore Hall, leaving no doubt that he is a “one-in-a-million talent” (Dallas Morning News)The Wigmore Hall’s live stream of the sold-out recital has already been viewed more than 100,000 times, with The New York Times stating, “If ever a young pianist made his London debut trailing clouds of glory, it was this 18-year-old South Korean.”

After releasing his first post-competition work, a live recording album of Beethoven’s Emperor concerto with the Gwangju Symphony Orchestra on Universal Music Korea and going Platinum within hours, Lim is set to release his debut Decca album in spring 2024. Reflecting on his journey Yunchan says “I made up my mind that I will live my life only for the sake of music, and I decided that I will give up everything for music… I wanted my music to become deeper, and if that desire reached the audience, I’m satisfied.

 Decca Classic’s Label Director, Dominic Fyfe and Executive Producer, Helen Rogers say, “Decca is home to the legacies of some of the greatest pianists on record: from Arrau and Ashkenazy to Brendel, Backhaus and Uchida. With Yunchan we begin a new chapter, one which looks back to that golden age of pianism but which also promises to set a gold standard for the future. We are privileged that Yunchan has chosen to make his home with Decca Classics and look forward to a long and storied relationship.”

Yunchan says “Decca has produced records with excellent sound quality, and has worked with numerous legendary musicians. It’s a record label that one can truly appreciate as a musician.”.

Decca Co-President Tom Lewis remarks, “Yunchan is, quite simply, the most exciting new classical artist on the planet. It took a global mission to secure his signature and bring him to Decca Classics. Tickets to his concerts already sell out in seconds, such is the level of excitement around him. He is a once-in-a-generation talent and we are so excited that he chose us.”

About Yunchan Lim

Born in Siheung, Korea, Yunchan Lim’s musical journey began at the age of 7. He quickly immersed himself in his studies, and at age 13, he was accepted into the Korea National Institute for the Gifted in Arts, where he met his teacher and mentor, Minsoo Sohn. Yunchan’s international debut came in 2018 when he won awards at the Cleveland International Piano Competition for Young Artists. His talent continued to shine, and by the age of 15, he was the youngest to win Korea’s IsangYun International Competition.

Live Dates

15 Nov 202316 Nov 2023Munich PhilharmonicMyung-whun Chung Beethoven Piano Concerto No.4Beethoven Piano Concerto No.4 Performances: Wed 15 Nov 2023 19:30Thu 16 Nov 2023 19:30 
24 Nov 202325 Nov 202326 Nov 202329 Nov 2023Munich Philharmonic (Korea Tour)Myung-whun Chung Beethoven Piano Concerto No.4Beethoven Piano Concerto No.4 Performances:Fri 24 Nov 2023 19:30 – Daegu Sat 25 Nov 2023 17:00 – DaejeonSun 26 Nov 2023 17:00 – SeoulWed 29 Nov 2023 19:30 – Seoul 
01 Feb 202406 Feb 202411 Feb 2024Recital Tour (Japan)Chopin: Trois Nouvelles ÉtudesChopin: 12 Etudes op.10Chopin: 12 Etudes Op. 25 PerformancesThu 01 Feb 2024 19:00 – TokyoSat 03 Feb 2024 15:00 – NagoyaMon 05 Feb 2024 19:00 – TokyoTue 06 Feb 2024 19:00 – KawasakiSun 11 Feb 2024 – Osaka 
15 Feb 202416 Feb 202417 Feb 202418 Feb 2024Boston Symphony Orchestra Tugan SokhievRachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.3Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.3 Performances:Thu 15 Feb 2024 19:30Fri 16 Feb 2024 13:30Sat 17 Feb 2024 20:00Sun 18 Feb 2024 14:00 
21 Feb 2024Carnegie HallRecitalChopin: Trois Nouvelles ÉtudesChopin: 12 Etudes op.10Chopin: 12 Etudes Op. 25 Performances:Wed 21 Feb 2024 20:00 
01 Mar 202403 Mar 2024Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Heras-CasadoProkofiev Piano Concerto No.2 Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.2 Performances:Fri 01 Mar 2024 20:00Sun 03 Mar 2024 14:30 
06 Mar 202407 Mar 2024Orchestre de ParisKlaus MakelaProkofiev Piano Concerto No.2Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.2 Performances:Wed 06 Mar 2024 20:00Thu 07 Mar 2024 20:00
14 Mar 202417 Mar 202419 Mar 2024Orchestre de Paris (US + Canada Tour)Klaus MakelaProkofiev Piano Concerto No.2Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.2 Performances:Thu 14 Mar 2024 19:30 – Ann Arbor, MI, USSun 17 Mar 2024 19:00 – Boston, MA, USTue 19 Mar 2024 19:30 – Montreal, Canada 
27 Mar 2024Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, LondonVasily Petrenko Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.3Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.3 Performances:Wed 27 Mar 2024 19:30  
06 Apr 2024Gewandhaus LeipzigRecitalChopin: Trois Nouvelles Études Chopin: 12 Etudes op.10Chopin: 12 Etudes Op. 25 Performances: Sat 06 Apr 2024 20:00 
08 Apr 2024Wigmore HallRecitalChopin: Trois Nouvelles Études Chopin: 12 Etudes op.10Chopin: 12 Etudes Op. 25 Performances: Mon 08 Apr 2024 19:30 
10 Apr 2024Società dei Concerti, Milano RecitalChopin: Trois Nouvelles Études Chopin: 12 Etudes op.10Chopin: 12 Etudes Op. 25 Performances: Wed 10 Apr 2024 – 20:45 
26 Apr 202428 Apr 2024Baltimore Symphony OrchestraMarin AlsopRachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.2Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 2 Performances:Fri 26 Apr 2024 20:00 – Baltimore Sun 28 Apr 2024 15:00 – North Bethesda 
15 May 202416 May 202418 May 2024Luzern Symphony Orchestra Charles DutoitChopin Piano Concerto No.2Chopin Piano Concerto No.2 PerformancesWed 15 May 2024 19:30 – Luzern Thu 16 May 2024 19:30 – Luzern Sat 18 May 2024 17:00 –-Künzelsau 

*International Piano




IMG: Federico Benigni fbenigni@imgartists.com / Nick Mathias nmathias@imgartists.com  

Korea: Sam Lee sam.lee@mocproduction.com