Preferred Name

Ji Hee Kim

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)


School of Music


Carrie Stevens

William Dabback

Jo-Anne van der Vat-Chromy

Michael Seth


Modern Korean art song, Gagok, is the Western-style vocal music genre that developed in the twentieth century in Korea, predominantly through the influence of western music curricula in missionary schools and the presence of Korean military bands. These influences led to the first generation of Western music leaders who contributed to the birth of Gagok. As a result, this new genre rapidly became popular and continued to be developed despite the Japanese occupation of Korea (1910-1945) and up to the present day. Since the birth of Gagok, two divergent compositional styles have emerged.

This DMA document aims to introduce professional classical singers and educators to Gagok and contemporary treatments of this critical global art song genre and explores through detailed examinations five selected Gagok representative of these two divergent compositional styles by two composers, Guisook Lee, and Jiyoun Chung. Guisook Lee, a prolific composer and composition professor at Korea National University of Arts in Seoul, South Korea, composed her Gagok with traditional Korean musical elements but using Western notation. In contrast, Jiyoun Chung, a prolific composer and composition professor at Central Washington University in the USA, predominantly embraced western sources from various genres of music in her compositions. This paper provides brief biographies of these two female-identifying composers and overviews of their compositional processes and musical philosophies. In addition, musical and poetic analyses are undertaken for each of the five selected Gagok, including word-for-word and literary translations. To assist non-Korean singers seeking to perform contemporary Gagok, International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) resources are provided.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.