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Yoon Jae Lee

New York, NY         

Yoon Jae Lee enjoys a multifaceted career as conductor, arranger, pianist, and musical entrepreneur. As Founder & Artistic Director of Ensemble 212, Mr. Lee has built the New York based orchestra into one of today’s finest young ensembles. Together they have received critical acclaim for innovative programming featuring works by living composers, arrangements of Mr. Lee, and exciting interpretations of the standard repertoire. Mr. Lee is a dedicated champion of new music and has initiated a new music educational concert series aimed at introducing living composers to young audiences. He has conducted numerous New York and world premieres of works by award-winning composers including Mohammed Fairouz, Huang Ruo, Daniel Felsenfeld, and Ke-Chia Chen. This season, he is collaborating with composer Texu Kim as part of Ensemble 212’s Composer in Residence program. His list of appearances as guest conductor include the Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg, Bruckner Orchester Linz, Opera on Tap, New England Conservatory and has collaborated with distinguished artists including Nick Canellakis, D’Anna Fortunato, David Krakauer, Mimi Stillman, members of the Attacca, Borromeo, Orion String Quartets, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Philadelphia Orchestra. Most recently, Mr. Lee was appointed Principal Conductor of the Albano Ballet Company in November 2014.


Mr. Lee’s arrangements have been praised by audiences and critics alike. His orchestral transcription of Mendelssohn’s Octet “Incorporated winds and brass…..intelligently”, claimed David Patrick Stearns of the Philadelphia Inquirer when performed by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. The New York Times described his chamber version of Mahler’s Fourth Symphony as “Illuminating….. with solos leaping out in unusually bold detail.” He is currently engaged in “The Mahler Chamber Project” to arrange all the symphonies and Das Lied von der Erde for chamber orchestra and is projected to be completed by 2020.


A native of New York City, Mr. Lee is a second-generation Korean-American. He received degrees in piano and conducting from the Mannes College of Music where he was awarded the N. T. Milani Memorial Conducting Fellowship and the Peter M. Gross Fund. Mr. Lee also studied at the Universität Mozarteum Salzburg in Austria. During that time he served as Assistant Conductor to the Salzburger Kammerphilharmonie. His conducting mentors include Dennis Russell Davies, David Zinman, Samuel Wong, David Hayes, Michael Charry, Murry Sidlin, and Arkady Leytush. Mr. Lee has participated in Kurt Masur’s conducting masterclass, the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen, and the Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute led by his keen interest in historical performance practice. He currently serves on the faculty at the City College of New York (CUNY).

Fairouz: Tahrir for Clarinet & Orchestra

Conducting the World Premiere of Mohammed Fairouz’s “Tahrir” composed in 2011 for solo clarinet & orchestra performed by David Krakauer and Ensemble 212.

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Huang Ruo: Path of Echoes – Chamber Symphony No. 1 (excerpt)

Conducting the New York premiere of Huang Ruo’s Chamber Symphony No. 1 “Path of Echoes” with Ensemble 212.
Path of Echoes: Chamber Symphony No. 1 was commissioned by the IRIS Orchestra. The title Path of Echoes, or Xiang Ji in Chinese, has two meanings: a path full of echoes and the paths along which echoes travel.

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Daniel Felsenfeld: Insomnia Redux; 4 AM for Orchestra

Conducting the New York premiere of Daniel Felsenfeld’s Insomnia Redux; 4 AM for Orchestra.

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