Esplanade Presents


Sacred Organ Works

Dong-ill Shin (South Korea)

14 Apr 2024, Sun, 3pm


(Intermission: None)

Esplanade Concert Hall

This event is over.


Experience sacred organ works from different countries and periods, performed by established organist Dong-ill Shin. This recital will be played on Singapore’s largest—4,470 pipes and 61 stops—pipe organ, built by German organ builders Johannes Klais Orgelbau.  



Toccata BWV 538 – J.S. Bach  

Allein Gott in der Hoh sei Ehr BWV 664 – J.S. Bach  

'Tierce en taille' from Gloria – N. de Grigny  

Litanie – J. Alain  

There is a Happy Land – G. Shearing  

I Love Thee, My Lord – G. Shearing  

Jesus is All the World to Me – D. Hustad  

Amazing Grace – C. Pardini  


About the organ  

With one of the largest solo repertoire of any musical instrument, the organ has traditionally been used to accompany voices in praise of God, with a body of music inspired by or written for the Christian church. 


From its earliest form with seven pipes of different sizes played by mouth, its design has evolved through time, influenced, among other factors, by its changing role as a status symbol in the Byzantine court in 757 AD. 


By the 15th century, pedals, ebony keys and new parts were introduced to the instrument to enable performance of polyphonic choral pieces that were popular at the time. Tones were made possible, bass could be emphasised and keyboards were placed closer together so that one person could play them both. Builders created instruments more suited to church acoustics. Aesthetically, pipe organs grew more elaborate and richly adorned, and by the 20th century, the organ’s full power was evident. 


With so much of its repertoire composed to induce a meditative state, or to communicate grandeur and power, the sound of a pipe organ is best described as majestic, moving and profound; this is music inspired by, and aspiring to, the heights of religious fervour. In turn, it has long been acknowledged for its ability to deepen worshippers’ sense of connection with God. 

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Artist Information

Dong-ill Shin


Organist Dong-ill Shin has been hailed as "one of the world's most promising talents of his generation" (Echo Republicain, France) and as having "formidable discipline and considerable musicality" (Dallas Morning, USA) and "an amazing technique, sensibility, and talent" (ABC, Spain).  


Shin debuted as a pianist with The Busan Philharmonic Orchestra at the age of 10 and began his organ studies with Dr. Sun-woo Choo at 14 years old. Having majored in Organ Performance and Church Music under Dr. Tong-soon Kwak at Yonsei University in Seoul, he graduated with a Bachelor of Music in 1997. Shin furthered his studies in France with Jean Boyer and received Diplôme National d'Etudes Supérieures Musicales from the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique de Lyon. He later enrolled in the prestigious Cycle de Perfectionnement Program and studied under Olivier Latry and Michel Bouvard at the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique de Paris. 


Shin has won numerous international accolades at competitions such as the Musashino-Tokyo International Organ Competition, the Prague Spring International Music Festival and Competition, the St. Albans International Organ Competition, and the Grand Prix de Chartres International Organ Competition.  


A prolific performer, Shin has held concerts all over the world and played at prestigious venues such as the Grand Auditorium de Radio (France), Cathédrale de Notre Dame (France), Bartok National Concert Hall (Budapest), Meyerson Symphony Hall and the Methuen Memorial Music Hall (USA), Mariinsky Concert Hall (Russia), Musashino Bunkakaikan (Japan), Victoria Concert Hall (Singapore), Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall, Forbidden City National Concert Hall (China), Lotte Concert Hall (Korea) and Melbourne Town Hall (Australia). He has also performed at the Washington National Cathedral, St. Patrick’s Cathedral (New York City) and the First Congregational Church (Los Angeles). He has played at several music festivals, including the Monaco International Organ Festival, Chartres International Organ Festival, St. Albans International Festival, Nuremberg International Festival, the Festival du Comminges, and International Bamboo Organ Festival.   


Shin has played under the baton of Jean-Claude Casadessus, Yoel Levi, Hans Graf, Myungwhun Chung and Thierry Fischer. He has also collaborated with musicians, such as Sumi Cho and Yo Yo Ma. He has premiered new works by Unsook Chin and Joel Martinson and has been commissioning new works for organ and saenghwang. His collaboration with saenghwang player Hyoyoung Kim has been highly praised as a “wonderful collaboration between two instruments that have different backgrounds but have the same way of producing sound. They show how a Korean traditional instrument can marry with a typical Western instrument.”  


He has been a featured artist on KBS Radio (Korea), NHK Satellite Television (Japan), France Musique, Radio France, and MEZZO Television (France), Lithuanian National Television, Hungarian National Radio, Spanish National Radio, Bayerischer Rundfunk radio, Radio Luxembourg, Australian 'Art and Sound' Radio, and WCRB, UPR, KBYU, and Pipedreams in the USA.  


Shin held music positions for over 10 years in the USA before moving back to his native South Korea in 2011. He is currently Professor of Organ and University Organist at Yonsei University, Seoul.  

Date & Time

14 Apr 2024, Sun


Esplanade Concert Hall

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