Tuesday, August 19, 2014

PIANO WINNERS: college/university & high school solo divisions

The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up of The American Prize in Piano Performance, 2014, College/University & High School Divisions.

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Piano Performance (SOLO), 2014—COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
HYUNKI YOON   Kansas City  MO
Schumann, Beethoven, Prokofiev, Bach

Hyunki Yoon
Hyunki Yoon, pianist, is a native of Seoul, Republic of Korea.  He completed a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance as a scholarship recipient at Chugye University for the Arts in Seoul.  Winner of the 1999 Eumyun Piano Competition and the 1998 Music Education Newspaper Competition, he has participated in concerts as soloist, chamber musician, and accompanist in Germany, Korea, and the United States.  He completed a Master of Music degree in piano performance as a full scholarship recipient at University of Missouri-Columbia.  As a graduate teaching assistant there he accompanied Show-Me Opera productions and taught applied piano class. He performed the Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 1 with the MU Philharmonic Orchestra at the Missouri Theatre in 2011 and received Runner-up in the Missouri Music Teachers Association's (MMTA) Collegiate Honors Auditions in 2011 and 2012. In 2013 he was featured an Emerging Artist Competition winner at the Missouri Theatre.

He is currently pursuing a Doctor or Musical Arts in piano performance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where he studies with Dr. Robert Weirich and receives full support for his entire doctoral program.

Among judges' comments: "...marvelous mood and spirit..." 

2nd Place:
GABRIELLE CHOU   Pembroke Pines  FL
Chopin, Ravel, Rachmaninoff, Beethoven

Gabrielle Chou
Pianist and violinist Gabrielle Chou has played on both instruments with numerous orchestras, including the Ars Flores Symphony Orchestra, Mihail Jora Philharmonic Orchestra of Bacau, and National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra. She is currently in her first year of undergraduate studies at the Juilliard School, where she studies piano with Jerome Lowenthal and violin with Lewis Kaplan. Her past studies include the Colburn Young Artists Academy in Los Angeles.

Gabrielle was the silver medal winner at the 6th Yamaha USASU International Senior Piano Competition, whose jury included legendary pianist Martha Argerich. She also received top prizes at the Young Composers’ Challenge, 10th Ettlingen International Competition for Young Pianists, NFMC National Composition Competition, 2nd Manchester International Piano Concerto Competition, and 21st Concorso Internazionale per Pianoforte e Orchestra Citta Di Cantu. Past festivals include the Aspen Music Festival and School, where she was a piano student and later a two-year violin fellow.

Among judges' comments: "...a wonderfully fluid technique and relaxed physical approach to the piano..." 

3rd Place:
INHYUN LEE   Brookline  MA
Bach, Haydn, Schumann, Bartok (Sonata)

Inhyun Lee
Inhyun Lee started piano at the age of five in her native South Korea. She studied under Alexander Korsantia at NEC, Young-lim Ham, Hae-lim Kim and Na-young Kim, and currently is pursing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Boston University under Professor Pavel Nerssesian. Miss Lee was the winner in the American Protégé international piano competition in 2011 and performed at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in 2011. Also, she received third prize in the 1st International Keyboard Odyssiad & Festival in 2012. As an enthusiastic and passionate performer, she has presented many recitals and performed as soloist with many orchestras in major concert halls in Seoul, Gwangju (South Korea), Tokyo, New York, Boston, Aspen (United States), Italy and etc. She studied under John O’Conor at the Aspen Music School. She has also performed in masterclasses of John Perry, Joseph Kalichstein, Dang Tai son, Gary Graffman and Anton Nel.

Among judges' comments: "Excellent and well-prepared fugue with clear voicing throughout."

The American Prize in Piano Performance (SOLO), 2014—HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
Bach, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Lutolawski
William Hume
17 year old William Hume is a senior at Carlisle High School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and has studied piano for over ten years.  He has won various awards and competitions and has performed at the Kennedy Center, Weill Recital Hall, and on the National Public Radio Program “From the Top.” He was recently named a 2014 National YoungArts Foundation Winner.  William has performed as a soloist with several orchestras, playing concerti by Mozart, Bach, Grieg and Beethoven.  His other interests include basketball, running and writing, and he has earned a varsity letter in Cross Country and a Gold Key Award in the Scholastic Art and Writing Contest.  He is a member of the National Honor Society and volunteers as pianist at area nursing homes and the Salvation Army.  He is a student of Dr. Jennifer Blyth.         http://williamhume.com/

Among judges' comments: "...exquisite dialogue and or voicing between the hands..."

2nd Place:
Liszt, Scriabin, Beethoven, Rochberg
Benjamin Gittens
Benjamin Gittens is an accomplished pianist from Mason, Ohio. Benjamin has won numerous competitions, including First Prize at the DePauw Young Artists Piano Competition in 2013, First Prize in the Southwest Ohio Pre-Collegiate Buckeye Competition in 2012 and 2013, and First Prize in the Concerto competition for Keyboard Division which gave him the opportunity to perform as a soloist with the Blue Ash Montgomery Symphony Orchestra in 2013. He was a winner in the Dayton Public Radio Young Talent Search in 2013 and he has won several Merit Awards for piano institute attendance including the Ohio Federation of Music Club Scholarship for the Art of the Piano at the College – Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati and Merit Scholarship Awards for the University of Indiana Summer Piano Academy and Bowling Green State University Summer Piano Institute.  He currently studies with Dr. Jackson Leung from Wright State University.

Among judges' comments: "...excellent performance with clearly articulated fugue subject and artistically shaped musical phrases..."

3rd Place:
Haydn, Bach, Chopin, Beethoven
Christopher Son Richardson

Christopher is a student of Duane Hulbert. He has appeared on NPR's "From the Top", KRCB 91.1 and KCTS 9 as a featured performer. Performing at the Finney Chapel in the Cooper International Festival's Artist Recital Series, his performance was broadcast live on WCLV 104.9. Selected as one of 2013 scholarship winners at the National Chopin Foundation, and a finalist at Curtis Institute 2012, he has performed in prestigious venues, including Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, the 2000 seat Music Tent (Opening Sarah Chang concert), McCallum Theater. He was a prizewinner at the 2013 International e-piano and played with the Minnesota Orchestra, second prizewinner at 2011 Virginia Waring Concerto, Tureck International Bach, 2012 LA Liszt International. He won first prize 2011 Seattle International Piano, at the International Russian Competitions (2012,2013), Ross McKee, Berkeley Etude Club, Pacific Musical Society. He won third prize at the 2012 Lennox International Young Artists Concerto.

Among judges' comments: "...a spirited Bach tempo full of life and joy!"


Congratulations to all!

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