Catching up with AIMES Alumni Jason Bae


I hope you are all well and safe.

My last update was back in 2016. Many things have happened since then and I would like to list them in bullet points in below. -

  • I performed piano exclusively for Her Royal Highness, Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex in Royal Academy of Arts at the Grand Opening of “Oceania” Exhibition in London in 2018 September.
  • New Zealand Symphony Orchestra Fellowship Programme Conductor for this year 2020.
  • Artist Teacher for Piano, School of Music, University of Auckland this year in 2020.
  • I competed in European Union Internnational Conducting Competition in Bulgaria - sole candidate to represent Oceania in January 2020.
  • I was finalist candidate for the Assistant Conductor position for Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra this year but I took New Zealand Symphony Orchestra position instead.
  • I became an official "Steinway Artist” representing Steinway & Sons Piano for lifetime in 2016.
  • I’ve conducted Aurora Symphony Orchestra in Stockholm in 2018-19, South Denmark Philharmonic Orchestra in 2017-18.
  • As a pianist, I gave very special piano recital for the remaining New Zealand Korean War Veterans for the second time since 2008 at Wellington Cathedral by the invitation from the Ambassador of Republic of Korea.

Since the Covid-19 New Zealand Nationwide Lockdown, I have decided to reside in New Zealand until September 2021. Unfortunately, concert halls will be closed for a while in New Zealand until government lifts the restrictions on public gatherings. At the moment, University of Auckland has been closed due to Covid-19 so I’ve been teaching my students online. It is uncertain time for musicians around the world including New Zealand. Of course we can only hope for government to allow us to make music in our concert halls and sharing with New Zealanders once again. Until then, our lives will be same business as usual - practicing in-doors wherever we are being isolated at the moment, continuously developing, sustaining our skills so that we can be fully prepared to give our best performance for the New Zealander audience when we are given an opportunity.

I know that due to our border closure, many international artists had to cancel their trips to New Zealand to perform for New Zealanders. I always believed that we have enough incredible hard-working talented Kiwis in this country (including AIMES award winners) that I hope that current New Zealander art organizations will finally look to us Kiwi artists by giving us more opportunities that we desperately and rightfully deserve. We deserve to be exposed and recognised more to New Zealanders that we are really great at what we do and I hope Kiwis can feel proud to have great talented New Zealanders who are contributing their lives for the Arts and Culture of this country. New Zealand has many other incredible talents other than All Blacks, all sportsmen and sportswomen.

We, Kiwis are pioneers and innovators in many fields. Hence, I sincerely thank AIMES Award for finding young extraordinarily talented New Zealanders in various areas of human civilization and for celebrating their hard works. I dream for the day when New Zealand government could recognise the history-making important works that AIMES have been doing all these years and I hope they can learn from this incredible Club for the future generation of this country.

Yours sincerely,

Jason Bae


Jason was the recipient of a 2009 AIMES Emerging Talent Award (sponsored by Bellingham Wallace) and the 2012 AIMES Music Award, sponsored by Sound Group and Yamaha Home Entertainment