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Sarah Chang: Playing in Pyongyang

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Talk Asia: Sarah Chang
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Classical musician Sarah Chang played a concert in North Korea
  • The American with Korean heritage said it was a remarkable experience
  • Child prodigy has matured and recorded over 20 albums

(CNN) -- Internationally renowned classical musician Sarah Chang has played violin to audiences in some of the world's greatest capital cities. But her virtuosity has also helped gain her access to one of the world's most secretive of places; Pyongyang.

The American with Korean heritage was invited to play in North Korea's capital with a South Korean orchestra in 2002, and it proved to be one of the most remarkable experiences of her life.

"It really was very fascinating. It was an experience unlike any other. It was a joint concert between the KBS South Korean orchestra and they shared the stage with the North Korean orchestra. It was pretty powerful," she said.

"The audience reaction was pretty remarkable. They were very warm. Personally, I was a little sad that didn't get to see the general public. It was a very much a controlled environment to be in... I couldn't go anywhere without two soldiers and an interpreter."

Video: Web extra: Harmony in North Korea

Despite being only 29 years old, Chang has traveled the world and been performing for more than two-thirds of her life. While many child prodigies fail to translate that early talent into a career, Chang has matured into a highly regarded musician who has recorded more than 20 albums. (Her first came when she was only 9).

She credits her successful career to a love for the music and performing.

"I think it was a mixture of genuinely loving being on stage, loving what I do. The travel is amazing, I get to work with the most incredible musicians in the industry. I am so fortunate in that respect and [I have] just an amazing team to help," she said.

Watch the full interview with Sarah Chang from Wednesday, May 12.

 
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