Dr. Keum Hwa Cha

Lecturer of Violin and Viola
Strings Area Coordinator

Concertmaster of Idaho-State Civic Symphony

Phone: 208 282 3355
Office: FA 215
E-mail: chakeum@isu.edu


  • B.Mus. 1997, New England Conservatory of Music
  • M.Mus. 1999, Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester
  • D.M.A. 2003, Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester
  • Artist Certificate. 2009, Meadows School of Arts, Southern Methodist University

Joined ISU Faculty in 2011.


Dr. Keum Hwa Cha became the concertmaster of the Idaho State-Civic Symphony since winning the position in August 2011.  She currently teaches applied violin and viola and other music courses including string methods, elements of music, and chamber music at Idaho State University. Keum Hwa has given numerous concerts as a soloist and chamber musician in South Korea and the United States, and has performed with Cornell Contemporary Chamber Players, Binghamton Philharmonic, Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, Han-Eum Chamber Ensemble, and the Seoul Tutti Ensemble. Her summer festival appearances include Kneisel Hall, Castleman Quartet Program, the Philadelphia International Music Festival, and the Lydian String Quartet Festival.

Keun Hwa has extensive experiences in historical performance practice, especially with the baroque instruments in early music ensembles under the direction of Paul O’Dette at Eastman, and she has been coached by Malcolm Bilson who specializes in period-instrument movement at Cornell University. Keum Hwa primarily studied with Hyo Kang, Masuko Ushioda, Charels Castleman, and Chee-Yun Kim. Her chamber music studies include Lucy Stolzman, Katherine Murdock, Eric Shumsky, James Dunham, Norman Fisher, Alan Harris, Andres Diaz, and Stephen Drury.

Keum Hwa is the co-founder of Ka-Eum String Chamber Orchestra at Eastman School of Music and served as a director of String Chamber Orchestra at Idaho State University. As an orchestral musician, Keum Hwa has had the privilege of playing under maestros David Effron, Robert Shaw and Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, and she served as a concertmaster of Meadows Symphony Orchestra. Keum Hwa was on the faculty at Chung-Ang University, Dankook University, Dongduk Women’s University, and Sungshin Women’s University in South Korea. She worked with Professor Castleman at Eastman School of Music as a teaching assistant, and taught at the University of Rochester as an instructor. 

An enthusiastic music educator, Keum Hwa has worked closely with public school music directors and regional youth orchestras. She has presented master classes and workshops to high schools and universities in South Korea and the United States. Her students have received scholarships and many other awards and her pre-collegiate students have served as principal players in youth orchestras. Since 2012, Keum Hwa has taught at the Summer Strings, a music camp for students 6-17 years of age, sponsored by the Idaho State-Civic Symphony Association and Idaho State University.

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