The musician has responded to criticism in the media last week of her response to a coughing child at her London recital


Kyung Wha Chung has issued a response to last week’s media furore over her reaction to a coughing child during her London comeback recital. The violinist made headlines with her visible irritation at a noisily coughing audience and her suggestion to the parents of a child that she should ‘come back when she’s older’.

Chung has written in The Guardian of her surprise at the interest generated by the incident – and of her happiness that it has sparked ‘lively debates on the behaviour of musicians and audiences alike’.

However, while she has ‘always welcomed children to my concerts, and indeed think it is a vital part of music education that they experience and discover the joys of live performance’, she stresses that ‘it is also important that the very youngest children are taken to appropriate events, where they can feel comfortable to move, whisper and react animatedly’.

She also emphasises that concert halls and theatres are forums for quiet, uninterrupted thought and ‘the last havens of peace’.

Photo: Decca

Kyung Wha Chung is interviewed in The Strad’s December 2014 issue, out now.

Subscribe to The Strad or download our digital edition as part of a 30-day free trial. To purchase single issues click here.