Chung has signed a three-year contract with the Seoul Metropolitan Government, city officials told Yonhap. His term will begin in March.
The appointment of Chung, one of Korea's most prominent musicians, is reportedly part of an effort to turn the Philharmonic into a world-class ensemble. The city also plans to spin off the group from its parent organization, the Sejong Cultural Center for the Performing Arts.
A pianist, Chung won second prize in the 1974 Tchaikovsky competition. After studying conducting at the Juilliard School, he served as an assistant conductor at the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He was principal guest conductor of Florence's Teatro Comunale from 1987 to 1992 and music director of Paris's Op_ra Bastille from 1989 to 1994, but left that post after clashing with the newly elected national government. He has also led the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome, and the Asia Philharmonic Orchestra, which he founded.