Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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id Chonghyo Shin

Chonghyo Shin came to the United States as a teenager in the 1950s with a full scholarship to Lasell Junior College near Boston. After two years she transferred to the New England Conservatory of Music where she earned undergraduate and graduate degrees, and then taught music. She moved to western Massachusetts in 1965 and has continued to share her passion for playing piano.

Full name: Chonghyo Shin

Date and place of birth: Feb. 6, 1936, Seoul, Korea

Address: Amherst

Job: I teach piano at Amherst College

Who lives under the same roof as you? I live alone

Children: Three: a son in Manhattan, a daughter in Exeter, N.H., and a daughter in Seattle, Wash. I also have six grandchildren

Education: I have a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree, both in music, and both from the New England Conservatory of Music

Pets: I have never had one

Hobbies: Before moving into a condominium, I was a passionate flower gardener for 25 years

Favorite movie: Fellini’s “La Strada”

Five items you can’t live without: Contact lenses, piano, my books, music and CDs

Last thing you purchased just for fun: An iPad

What’s at the top of your bucket list? Learning to speak French and having more time to read

Life-changing experience: Hearing Arthur Rubinstein perform a piano recital in Symphony Hall in Boston, shortly after I arrived in this country when I was 18 years old. Until that day I had no idea that such beauty existed in this world, because I had no idea that the sound of the piano and the music could be so powerful and moving. On that day I decided to become a pianist and a music teacher to help guide others to have such a profound experience

A little-known fact about you: I was a very capable seamstress when I was in my 30s. I made all of my own clothes and my daughters’

What really sets you off? People who talk loudly on cellphones on the train and bus

If you could spend the day with a celebrity from any time in history, who would it be? Franz Liszt, great Hungarian pianist, composer, conductor and teacher. He was not only one of the greatest pianists who has ever lived, but also a wonderful human being and a noble character with enormous generosity and kindness

Favorite team or athlete: I don’t pay much attention to athletes

What does your ideal weekend look like? Driving somewhere beautiful on a nice day and enjoying nature

One thing you would change about yourself: To be able to correspond more regularly with close friends far away

People who knew you in high school thought you were: Studious

Whom do you most admire? Nelson Mandela. Despite so much suffering and imprisonment for 27 years, when he was freed from prison he was able to work for peace and reconciliation

Parting shot: Be cheerful and live with gratitude

Editor’s Note - To suggest someone for ID, email Keri-Ann Aubin at kaubin@gazettenet.com.

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