This concert features carefully selected, exceptional young performers, many from the Bay Area. Each has won in prestigious local or national piano competitions. This concert is eagerly anticipated by many Bay Area families and Steinway Society friends who all agree: performances by these dedicated, enthusiastic, and tremendously talented up-and-coming young musicians can be every bit as spine-tingling and memorable in their own way as performances by our more seasoned artists.
Julian Carroll(age 21) PIANO
Julian Carroll, age 21, is a senior in the Bachelor of Music program at San Jose State University, studying piano performance with Dr. Gwendolyn Mok. He has studied previously at De Anza College and the University of Chicago.
Kevin Chen(age 17) PIANO
Kevin Chen, age 17, began his piano lessons at the age of 4 with Doris Lin and is currently studying piano with Jinye Wang and John Delevoryas. He was a winner of the 2009 MTAC concerto competition and 2nd place winner of the 2009 CMTANC Youth Music Competition. Kevin has also played in the Portland International Piano festival. He was a finalist in the Marilyn Mendell Piano Competition in 2010, and won numerous awards at the United States Open Music Competition of 2010. Kevin was selected to perform for the Panel Honors recital at the MTAC 2011 Convention. Kevin is currently concertmaster of the Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra. He will be a freshman at Stanford this fall, majoring in Biology and Piano.
Lei Huang(age 16) PIANO
Lei Huang, age 16, has studied with Mr. Daniel Cheng for over ten years. Most recently she was selected to perform on the Panel Honors Recital at the MTAC Convention. In 2011, she won the Palo Alto Philharmonic 2011 Concerto Movement Competition. In 2008, she won first alternate in the MTAC Solo Competition. She won the first prize award and the best Chinese music performance award in the Chinese Music Teachers' Association of North California Youth Music Competition in 2004.
Sean Keegan(age 15) GUITAR
Sean Keegan, age 15, has been studying classical guitar for more than ten years. He currently studies with guitarist Robert Miller at the California Conservatory of Guitar in Santa Clara. In 2012, Sean was awarded First Place in the instrumental division of the Pacific Musical Society's competition, and was selected to participate in the Parkening International Youth Festival Guitar Competition. Sean also has performed at many venues for classical guitar in California, as well as in Cuenca, Spain during a recent semester abroad in Spain.
Julianna Liu(age 13) PIANO
Julianna Liu, age 13, is a student of Mr. Daniel Cheng. Honors include First Place (Division I) at the MTAC Solo Piano Competition in 2009, Winner of the 2011 Marilyn Mindell Piano Competition of the Peninsula Symphony and Honorable Mention in North California MTAC State Solo Piano Competition in 2011. Julianna performed in master classes given by Ruth Slenczynska, Gwendolyn Mok, and Greg Anderson.
Ben Mildenhall(age 19) PIANO
Ben Mildenhall, age 19, has been playing piano for 14 years. He currently studies with Thomas Schultz at Stanford University. His past teachers include Winston Choi, Head of Piano at Roosevelt University, and Angela Wright. In the summer of 2009, Ben attended the Indiana University Piano Academy. During high school he performed regularly in recitals and twice in concert, once with his school orchestra and once with the Oak Park and River Forest Symphony. Ben also studies violin at Stanford, currently with Robin Sharp, and is a member of the Stanford Symphony Orchestra. He is also part of a piano trio and recently played in the pit of a student-produced musical. Ben is currently planning on majoring in math and also enjoys physics and computer science.
Sean Mori(age 9) VIOLIN
Sean Mori, age 9, started his violin studies at age 3 and piano studies at age 7. He currently studies the violin with Bettina Mussumeli in the Preparatory Division of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music since age 6. In March 2012, he won the first place in 2012 Pacific Musical Society Competition, and will be performing at the winners concert on May 20th.
Sean has performed at numerous recitals. His first public solo performance was at age 5 at Stanford Shopping Center. At age 6, he performed as the youngest member of “Magical Strings of Youth” led by Betty Haag Khunke which toured Prague in Czech Republic with concert violinist, Vadim Gluzman and the co-founder of Stradivari Society, Mary Galvin. He became the youngest member of the Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra at age 7. Sean and his friends presented a benefit recital for the Japan Earthquake Relief and raised over $7,500 in April 2011. He is a fourth grader student at Ohlone Elementary School in Palo Alto. Besides music, Sean enjoys variety of sports, especially soccer and karate, Lego, drawing and reading. He loves to play with friends and his younger sister.
Christopher Son Richardson(age 13) PIANO
Thirteen year-old Christopher Richardson was the youngest finalist at the 2012 enrollment audition at the Curtis Institute and has been selected to attend the 2012 Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition, the Cooper International Piano Competition and the Aspen Music Festival and School this summer. Christopher’s many US performances include Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York, the McCallum Theater in Palm Springs, and the Harris Concert Hall, the Music Tent in Aspen. He has won many competition prizes and awards, including a 2012 winner in the CA State MTNA Competition, the Alternate at the MTNA Division, a 1st place winner in several divisions at the US Open Music Competition, East Bay Music Festival, and a 3rd place at the Lennox International Young Artists Concerto Competition.
In 2011, Christopher won 1st prize in the following: Seattle International Piano Competition, the Pacific Musical Society Piano Competition, the Sylvia M. Ghiglieri Piano Competition and the US Open Music Competition. He also won 2nd place in the Junior Concerto Division of the Virginia Waring International Piano Competition. In 2010, Christopher won a gold medal at the Carnegie Hall International Young Musician Festival and placed 2nd at the Seattle and Tureck International Bach Competition.
He won 2nd Prize in the 2009 and 2010 Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competitions and participated in the Piano Fest Master Classes featuring Andrew Russo, Hans Boepple and Christopher O’Riley at the Portland International Piano Festivals.
Agata Sorotokin(age 14) PIANO
Agata Sorotokin, age 14, is a piano student of John McCarthy in the Preparatory Division of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Agata made her debut at age 10 in Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall as winner of the American Fine Arts Festival Competition. Agata has received numerous awards, notably first prizes in the 2012 Pacific Musical Society's Scholarship Competition, 2010 Marilyn Mindell Junior Competition, the 2010 El Camino Concerto Competition.
Catherine Xu(age 16) PIANO
Catherine Xu, age 16, began her piano studies at the age of six and is a scholarship student in the Preparatory Division at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where she is a student of John McCarthy. Catherine honors include first place at the 16th Annual San Francisco Chopin Competition, winner of the 2009 Marilyn Mindell Competition of the Peninsula Symphony, alternate winner of the 2010 MTNA Junior Piano Performance Competition in CA, two-time finalist of the Mondavi Young Artists Competition, and third place at the 2011 CMTANC Youth Music Competition. She was recently selected to perform at the Panel Honors Recital at the MTAC Convention.
Supported, in part by a cultural affairs grant from the City of San Jose.