Chang, a child prodigy, was a prot_g_e and friend of Stern, one of the 20th-century's greatest violinists and teachers. He died in September 2001.
"I first encountered Isaac Stern when I was 6 years old," she said in a statement, "and from that moment he became a musical godfather to me."
"I am honored to be giving the world premiere of Richard Danielpour's work that has been commissioned in Mr. Stern's memory," she added. "Even more fitting is that it will be performed at Carnegie Hall, which is where I last saw Mr. Stern for his 80th birthday celebrations. I will always remember him once saying to me, 'The most important thing is to wake up every day and be proud to be a musician.'"
Danielpour, the composer, most recently, of the opera Margaret Garner, said that he had met Stern just once, months before the violinist's death. "He insisted on our having dinner sometime in December 2001 with a 'great bottle of wine. Of course, the dinner never happened and the bottle was never opened. It is my hope, however, that this work be the equivalent of a raised glass to the memory of this great man."
The premiere of the work is tentatively scheduled for March 18, 2007, at the beginning of Chang's spring tour of the United States. The tour reaches Carnegie Hall, which Stern helped save from the wrecking ball and where he served as president for decades, on April 10. Later, Chang will perform the work on a European tour.