Kudos

Highlighting the accomplishments of current and former members!
last update: February 2017

Congratulations to all those students who were selected to participate in the 2017 PMEA District Orchestra Festival at Moon Area High School from January 26-28, and/or the District Band Festival at Valley View High School on February 9-11.
Violin: Kerry Broker, Rachel Chang, Emily Chen, Rebecca Chen, Enoch Hsaio, Hannah Ishizaki, Tony Qin, William Wang, Chloe Yofan, Ella Li
Cello: William Ren, Julia Solomon
Bass: Rachel Martin (Principal), Andreas Paljug, Alexis Schulte-Albert
Flute: Kelsey Bares, Hannah Kim (1st Chair)
Oboe: Charles Sherk
Bassoon: Ben Franks-Meinert, Philip Swigon, Ellie Urich, William Ren
Horn: Alexander Kampas, William Sands

Congratulations to PYSO Members who were winners in the 2017 Pittsburgh Concert
Society’s Young Artists’ Competition. As winners they will perform in March at Carnegie
Mellon University’s Kresge Auditorium:
• Piano duo Yosen and Futen Wang (both of whom play viola in PYSO)
• The Well Tempered Trio (with PYSO member Chris Fedor on cello and PYSO Alumnus
Joseph Comella on violin)
• Viola Duo James Cunningham, IV and Devin Moore
• Soloist William Wang (violin)
• Soloist Devin Moore (Viola)
• The Amadeus Quintet (with Joseph Comella and Minori Hayakawa on violins, Yosen Wang
on viola, Chris Fedor on cello and Ariana Chiu on piano)

The Amadeus Quartet with Joey Comella, Minori Hayakawa, Yosen Wang and Christopher Fedor took 2nd Place in both the 2017 ENKOR International Music Competition for Chamber Music and the American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2016-17, High School Division. They also performed a pre-concert recital for Chamber Music Pittsburgh’s February 6th concert series at Carnegie Music Hall.

Congratulations also go to the PYSO members who were accepted into the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s Side-by-Side program which culminates in a performance with the PSO on May 16th at Heinz Hall:
Violin: Margaret Caballero, Chaehyun Kim, Sein Lee, Joanna Li, Chloe Yofan
Viola: Devin Moore, Yosen Wang
Cello: Bobo Liang
Bass: Rachel Martin, Andreas Paljug, Alexis Schulte-Albert
Flute: Runa Shuda
Oboe: Alexa Kroll
Clarinet: Nathan Magley
Bassoon: Philip Swigon
Horn: Jessica Greb, Reed Ulery
Trumpet: Joel Montgomery

Maine Hoppo (violin) was a winner of the 2016 Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra concerto competition 2016 and the 2017 Duquesne National Solo Awards.

Chaehyun Kim (violin) is a finalist for the 2016-2017 Pittsburgh Philharmonic Young Artists Concerto Competition.

Rachel Martin (bass) was accepted into the 2017 National Youth Orchestra of the USA. Chosen through highly competitive national auditions, she will represent PYSO this summer, performing at Carnegie Hall followed by a concert tour in Latin America with Marin Alsop conducting.

Yosen Wang (viola), Christopher Fedor (cello), William Sands (horn) and Alexander Kampas (horn) have been selected for NAFME All-Eastern Honors Orchestra Ensemble. The event will take place on April 8 in Atlantic City, NJ.

On January 6th of this year, Michael Frontz (cello) and Nathan Magley (clarinet) performed
Music for 18 Musicians by Steve Reich in its Pittsburgh Premiere at Pittsburgh CAPA High School. The production was produced by Michael Frontz, and co-music directed by Michael Frontz and CAPA High School Teacher, Lenny Young.

Michael Frontz, (cello), Timothy Sutton (cello) Jimmy Cunningham IV (viola), and Devin Moore (viola) performed on January 20th in the Pittsburgh High School Honors Recital at Duquesne University.

The Imperial Quartet with Hannah Ishizaki and Kerry Broker (violins), Devin Moore (viola) and Julia Solomon (cello) were appointed to be the 2016-17 Montgomery Fellowship Quartet, an award made possible by Chamber Music Pittsburgh. The Imperial Quartet will perform preconcert recital for Chamber Music Pittsburgh’s April 17 performance featuring the Pacifica Quartet.

Pesaro Quartet featuring Chaehyun Kim and Maine Hoppo (violins), Bobo Liang (cello) and Alexis Schulte-Albert (bass) performed a pre-concert recital at the February 18th Fiddlesticks Concert of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO).

Chloe Yofan (violin) performed with the Matto Quartet on the Saturday Light Brigade radio show on January 7 as well as in a pre-concert recital for the PSO Heinz Hall concert onFebruary 12.

The Penn Quintet with Kerry Broker and Hannah Ishizaki (violin), Jimmy Cunningham, IV (viola), Michael Frontz (cello), and Rachel Martin (bass) performed for the Friends of the PSO on February 9. The same group, along with Devin Moore (viola), performed for attendees of the Pittsburgh Speaker Series at Heinz Hall on the January 25 that featured speaker Jon Cleese.

Incalzando Wind Trio with Kelsey Bares (flute), Alexa Kroll (oboe) and PYSO alumnus Elizabeth Sikes (flute) performed live on the Saturday Light Brigade radio show on January 14 at the Pittsburgh Children’s Museum.

Joel Montgomery (trumpet) was awarded First Place at the 2017 Maranatha Baptist University Great Lakes Music Festival Piano Competition.

Runa Shuda (flute) is an alumnus of the Brevard Music Center 2015 Prorgram and the 2016 Tanglewood Music Institute Summer Program. She performed a flute concerto with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at Rodef Shalom in October 2016. Runa received is an Honorable Mention Winner of the 2016 National Young Arts in the Flute/Woodwinds Division and is also a Finalist in the Pittsburgh Philharmonic Young Artists Concerto Competition.

Congratulations to the Amadeus String Quartet that placed second in the American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2016, High School Division. Members are Joey Comella (violin alumnus), Minori Hayakawa (violin), Yosen Wang (viola), and Chris Fedor (cello). The quartet is coached by PSO violinist Dennis O’Boyle. The group also performed at Nevillewood Country Club in October.

Congratulations to all PYSO students who were selected to participate in 2016 PMEA District 1 Honors String Orchestra and 2016 PMEA District 1 Honors Band
Violin: Cuna Kim (Concertmaster) Rachel Chang, Emily Chen, Leila Fanien, Lena Ison, Sein Lee, Daphnie Nie
Viola: Futen Wang (Principal), Felix Vesser
Cello: William Han, Ji-Yool Moon, William Ren, Julia Solomon
Bass: Alexis Schulte-Albert (Principal), Rachel Martin, Andreas Paljug
Flute: Kelsey Bares, Hannah Kim, Rebecca Scimio
Bassoon: Philip Swigon, Benjamin Franks-Meinert, Ellie Urich
Horn: Alexander Kampas, William Sands
Percussion: Thomas Obusek

Christopher Fedor (cello) was selected for and participated in the 2016 All-National Honor Ensemble Symphony Orchestra that recently took place from November 10-13 at the Gaylord Texan Resort Hotel in Grapevine, Texas.

Will Sands (horn) was selected for and participated in the NAfME All-National Honor Ensembles – Concert Band that took place November 10-13 at the Gaylord Texan Resort Hotel in Grapevine, Texas.

Michael Fleming (tuba) was a finalist in the 2016 International Tuba-Euphonium Solo Competition (ITEC) and was Principal Tuba in the 2013 NAFME Honors Band.

Olivia Ames (trombone) participated in the Berkshire Brass Week and also attended the Boston University Tanglewood Institute this past summer.

Jaemin Lee (cello) was selected to participate in the Eastman School of Music Horizons Program in the summer of 2016.

Swata Alagar (violin) won the Level 12 division (1st place) of the Westmoreland County Piano Sonatina Competition in October 2016.

Jim Cunningham IV (viola), Anna Gorske (violin), Runa Shuda (flute),
Michael Frontz (cello), Nathan Magley (clarinet) and Olivia Ames (trombone) performed in the Byham Theater pit for Pittsburgh Musical Theater’s “Jekyll and Hyde” in October 2016.

Yosen Wang (viola) and Futen Wang (viola) were selected by Steinway Society of Western Pennsylvania to perform the Poulenc four-hand sonata in the master class offered by international award-winning pianist Neil Rutman at Carnegie Mellon University on November 12, 2016.

William Wang (violin) was the winner of 2015-16 Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra Concerto Competition and performed with them last April and was also the winner of the 2016 Pittsburgh Philharmonic Orchestra Concerto Competition and performed with them last March.

Devin Lai (violin) received 3rd prize in the 2016 ENKOR International Music Competition. He performed in a side-by-side concert with The Philadelphia Orchestra in June as a member of the NYO2 program of Carnegie Hall. Additionally, he performed Vivaldi’s Winter Concerto with the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra as a guest soloist in two concerts in October.

Jim Cunningham IV (viola) debuted as soloist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in the Telemann Double Viola Concerto alongside his teacher Marylene Gingras-Roy on October 9. Jim with fellow PYSO members Michael Frontz (cello) and Anna Gorske (violin) performed for Wynton Marsalis on November 10.

Alexander Kampas (horn) participated in the Interlochen Horn Institute this past summer and and earned a spot in the 2015 PMEA All-State Orchestra.

Hannah Ishizaki (violin) recently won MATA Jr. (Music at the Anthology’s), a national composition competition based in New York City. As a winner, her piece will be premiered at the National Sawdust Theater in New York on November 21. Hannah also attended the Boston University Tanglewood Institute this summer for composition, where her works were read during rehearsals and one work was premiered in a performance at the end of the session. Hannah’s compositions, “The Corner Shop” and “Light in Isolation” were also premiered by the Chautauqua Strings this past August at Chautauqua, New York.

 

OLDER POSTS:

Congratulations to the Amadeus String Quartet that made it into the finals for The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2016: high school division. Members of the quartet are Joey Comella (violin), Minori Hayakawa (violin), Yosen Wang (viola), and Chris Fedor (cello). Coached by PSO violinist Dennis O’Boyle, this quartet was organized in September 2015 under the Youth Chamber Connection program (YC2) that is managed by TRYPO. To read more: http://theamericanprize.blogspot.com/

Congratulations to Chris Fedor (cello) who was selected as a member of the 2016 NAfME All-National Honor Ensembles Symphony Orchestra that will take place at the Gaylord Texan Resort Hotel and Convention Center from November 10-13, 2016. The program this year will not only include amazing conductors, but also a newly designed program including master classes and educational sessions.

Congratulations to the 19 PYSO members that participated in the PSO’s Audience of the Future and Side-By-Side concert on April 27 at Heinz Hall, conducted by Andres Franco.
Bass: Rachel Martin, Alexis Schulte-Albert
Bassoon: Ellen Bleier Philip Swigon
Cello: Christopher Fedor, Michael Frontz, Ji-Yool Moon
Horn: Reed Ulery
Percussion: Ajay Wadhwani
Trombone: Olivia Ames
Trumpet: Mason Shay
Tuba: Joseph Wasko
Viola: Jim Cunningham, Nathanael Roberts
Violins: Sabine Gross, Anna Gorske, William Hasley, Minori Hayakawa, Vivian Li

Julie Choe (violin), Jim Cunningham IV (viola), Ziqi Meng (violin) and Devin Moore (violin) were accepted into the 2016 National Youth Orchestra of the USA. Chosen through highly competitive national auditions, they will represent PYSO this summer, when they embark on a European tour that will take them to Amsterdam, Montpellier, Copenhagen, and Prague.

Devin Lai (violin) has been accepted to be a member of NYO2 program of Carnegie Hall for the 2016 season, exciting new program, which has grown out of the success of the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America (NYO). This new program is for students starting at age 14 who are too young to apply for NYO. As a member of NYO2, Devin will work with conductor Giancarlo Guerrero and players from The Philadelphia Orchestra from June 18 to July 4. Lessons, coaching, and orchestra rehearsals, as well as other educational and recreational activities, will take place at Purchase College in Purchase, NY, just outside of New York City. The finale of the NYO2 experience will be a weekend in Philadelphia from July 1 to July 4, highlighted by a side-by-side concert with The Philadelphia Orchestra on July 2 at Verizon Hall.

Congratulations to the following PYSO members that were selected to participate in PMEA Western Region Orchestra that performed under the baton of Gerardo Edelstein at State College Area High School this past February:
Violin: Kerry Broker, Margaret Caballero, Julie Choe, Evan Deddo, Jennifer Han, Joanna Li, Tony Qin
Viola: Brandon Falcona, Ahna Pearson Yosen Wang, Bohan Yao
Cello: Chris Fedor, Kyle Johnson, Jaemin Lee, Julia Solomon, Timothy Sutton
Bass: Rachel Martin
Flute: Katja Kochvar
Oboe: Olivia Van Dyke
Bassoon: Ben Franks-Meinert, Philip Swigon
Horn: Reed Ulery
Tuba: Joseph Wasko

And to the PYSO members that were selected to participate in PMEA 2016 All-State Festival that performed in the All-State Orchestra under the baton of Howard Hsu and the All-State Wind Ensemble* under the baton of Emily Threinen at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center this past April.
Violin: Kerry Broker, Margaret Caballero, Julie Choe, Evan Deddo, Jennifer Han, Hannah Ishizaki, Joanna Li
Viola: Yosen Wang (Principal), Brandon Falcona, Ahna Pearson, Bohan Yao
Cello: Chris Fedor, Kyle Johnson (Principal), Jaemin Lee, Julia Solomon, Timothy Sutton
Bass: Rachel Martin (Principal)
Flute: Katja Kochvar, Esther Kim*
Oboe: Olivia Van Dyke
Horn: William Sands*
Bassoon: Ben Franks-Meinert, Philip Swigon
Tuba: Joseph Wasko

Hannah Ishizaki (violin) had a composition for wind instruments, “To Hear, To Listen” premiered at Heinz Memorial Chapel on January 21, 2016 as part of the OvreArts concert “Igor Et Al.” The concert was also broadcast on WQED’s Performance In Pittsburgh on February 5, 2016 at 8:00 pm.

Nathaniel Chen (cello) is a recent winner (playing piano) of the Butler County Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Concerto Competition; he will perform with the symphony on April 9. In July of 2015, Nathaniel won 2nd prize for the Concerto Competition and 3rd prize for the Solo Competition in the Carmel Debut International Piano Competition.  He is one of three honorable mentions for the annual PYSO Concerto Competition that was held in January and this spring he will play a piano recital at Heinz Hall as part of the PSO pre-concert Steinway Society Young Artist Series.

Runa Shuda (flute) was a finalist in the 2016 Pittsburgh Philharmonic Young Artists Concerto Competition.

Devin Lai (violin) is a winner of the 2015-16 Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra Young Artists Solo Competition and will perform with the orchestra on April 3, 2016.

Brandon Falcona (viola) has been performing with the Argent Trio with YC2. He will play in the orchestra for the North Hills High School musical in March.

Swata Alagar (violin) achieved First Class Honors on the Level 9 Violin Practical Examination of the Royal Conservatory Music Development Program as well as First Class Honors with Distinction on the Royal Conservatory Music Development Program Advanced Rudiments theory test.

John Kenneth Coronado (trumpet) was recently rehired to work at Interlochen Center for the Arts Summer 2016 and will be performing with the IUP Faculty Brass Quintet, Hoodlebug Brass at 2016 PMEA Conference in Hershey, PA.

Kerry Broker (violin ) played the role of Carmen Bernstein in Shady Side Academy’s production of “Curtains” on February  12, 13, and 14th.

Steven Koslowski (percussion) played Tenor Drums for his high school in the Tournament of the Bands All Star Band in the Philadelphia Parade on November 26, 2015.

The Contra Quartet, a bass quartet comprised of PYSO bassists Rachel Martin and Alexis Schulte-Albert  and TRYPO bassists James Boston and Andreas Paljug performed prior to a PSO January concert at Heinz Hall, at the PSO Fundraiser Shadyside Splendor as well as at A Night of Jazz a PYSO Fundraiser to raise funds for the Don Evans Endowed Bass Chair in memory of long time PSO member and PYSO Bass Coach Donald Evans.

Michael Frontz (cello) was a featured guest artist with the Pittsburgh School for the Choral Arts at their winter concert in December 2015.

PYSO is proud of all the PYSO members who participated in the Pittsburgh Concert Society’s (PCS) Young Artists Competition held at Kresge Theatre, Carnegie Mellon University this past January. PYSO congratulates this year’s winners: Chris Fedor (cello), Rebecca Scimio (flute), Rebecca Chen (who plays in PYSO’s Violin I section but played Piano for the competition), recent PYSO alumnus Joseph Comella (violin) and the Penn Quartet comprised of PYSO members’ Hannah Ishizaki and Kerry Broker on violin, Jim Cunningham, IV on viola and Kyle Johnson on cello. Winners receive a scholarship award as well as a performance date at Kresge Auditoriums this coming March.

Congratulations to the following PYSO members that were selected to participate in PMEA programs this past November 2015 and January 2016 (Honors String Orchestra at Chartiers Valley High School; Honors Band at Bethel Park High School; District Orchestra at Upper St. Clair High School; District Band EAST at Norwin High School and District Band WEST at W. Fayette High School):

Violin:   Kerry Broker, Margaret Caballero, Julie Choe, Devin Moore, Tony Qin, Jiawen Zhu
Viola:  Brandon Falcona, Ahna Pearson Yosen Wang, Bohan Yao
Cello:   Chris Fedor, Kyle Johnson, Jaemin Lee, Julia Solomon, Timothy Sutton
Bass:    Steven Koslowski, Rachel Martin (principal)
Flute:   Katja Kochvar
Oboe:  Olivia Van Dyke
Clarinet:  Megan McKelvey
Bassoon: Ben Franks-Meinert, Philip Swigon
Horn:   Reed Ulery
Tuba:   Joseph Wasko

 

Fall 2015

Kyle Johnson (cello), Jim Cunningham (viola), Philip Swigon (bassoon), and Jerry Meng (violin) were accepted to attend all-national honors orchestra and will go to Nashville for 4 days in October, 2015.

 

Summer 2015

The following PYSO member will perform a piece with The Piano Guys at the Benedum Center on August 27, 2015: violinists Devin Moore, Kerry Broker, Hannah Ishizaki, Anthony D’Orazio, Vivian Li, and Anna Gorske, as well as violist Jim Cunningham.

Six PYSO members were accepted to CREDO’s 2015 summer program: Devin Moore (violin), Jimmy Cunningham (viola) , Anna Gorske (violin), Kyle Johnson (cello) , Julia Solomon (cello), and Nathaniel Hoyt (cello).

 

2014-15 SEASON

Congratulations to the five PYSO members that participated in the H.J. Heinz Company Audience of the Future “Splendid City” program: Omri Barak, Hannah Ishizaki, Noah McDonald, Janelle Sands, and Tommy Urich. They were joined on April 28, 2015 for a concert at Heinz Hall with twenty-five members from PYSO that performed with the PSO in the EQT Student Side-By-Side event that was conducted by Lawrence Loh: Ajay Wadhwani (percussion), Amanda Vosburgh cello), Charlie Loh (violin), Devin Moore (viola), Gerry Chen (violin), Hannah Ishizaki (violin), Hannah Piston (harp), Isabel Acevedo (violin), Jacob McAleavey (bass), Jaemin Lee (cello), Janelle Sands (cello), Jennifer Han (violin), Jim Cunningham (viola), Jonathan Perez (trombone), Julia Solomon (cello), Kyle Johnson (cello), Mara Mignogna (violin), Megan McKelvey (clarinet), Nathanael Roberts (viola), Omri Barak (trumpet), Runa Shuda (flute), Sabine Gross (violin), Thomas Urich (trombone), William Ren (cello), and William Sands (horn).

Congratulations to the winner of this year’s contest – ARIANA CHIU – who will be performing the first movement from Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto #3 as a soloist with PYSO on the May 17 Heinz Hall concert.

Also, congratulations to violinist JULIE CHOE and harpist HANNAH PISTON for honorable mention. They will be performing as soloists with piano accompaniment on the March 22 Tiffany Concert.

Jonathan Perez (trombone) participated in the PMEA Honors Jazz Band and is a member of the Allegheny Valley Honors Band. In April 2015, as a member of the North Hills Wind Ensemble in Providence, R.I. he will perform at the 2015 National Association for Music Education All-Eastern Convention.

Runa Shuda (flute) was selected principal chair for flute in the PMEA Honors Band and in the summer of 2014 attended the CMU pre-college 2014 summer program.

Jerry Meng (violin) was a winner in the Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra Young Artists Competition, and will perform with the orchestra in April.

Jerry Meng (violin) and Julie Choe (violin) performed with the PSO for their Education & Community concerts, conducted by Fawzi Haimor. In January, Jerry was soloist on “Morning in Miao Ling” with the PSO for the Schooltime concerts entitled “East Meets West” at Heinz Hall and in February, Julie was soloist on “Winter” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons for the Fiddlesticks concerts at Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center in Midland and at Heinz Hall.

Julie Choe (violin) won 1st prize in the solo division age category 15 to18 years old at the 2015 Duquesne Young Artist National Competition.

Jaemin Lee (vello) selected as the 2015 Young Artist Concerto Competition winner sponsored by the Pittsburgh Philharmonic Orchestra.

Katina Psomiadis (flute) is a junior studying Flute Performance and Psychology at Duquesne University and a member of the Duquesne Wind Symphony, Flute Choir, and Symphony Orchestra. This is her second year in PYSO.

Christopher Petricca (trombone) a Music Education freshman at the University Honors College at Duquesne and the Mary Pappert School of Music, received the Director’s Circle honor for his impressive academic achievement. He performed in Duquesne’s Wind Symphony under the direction Dr. Robert Cameron and assistant conductor Jerrett Kocan at the Carnegie Music Hall on September 30, November 16 and February 10.

Jim Cunningham, IV (viola) performed the Stamitz Viola Concerto at CAPA High School this past February and in the Bird With Strings Jazz Concert at James St. Tavern in January. As part of Chautauqua Strings he played at Fox Chapel Presbyterian Church (Jan 2015). Jim, along with fellow PYSO string players Hannah Ishizaki (violin), Kerry Broker (violin) & Kyle Johnson (cello) comprise the Penn Quartet and played on stage at Synod Hall for Renaissance & Baroque Society (Feb 2015) as well as in at Calvary United Methodist Church for TRYPO Fundraiser (Feb 2015).

Gladstone Butler (percussion) will attend Aspen Music Festival this coming summer.

Philip Swigon (bassoon) was selected to perform in the PMEA All-state Wind Ensemble.

Mariam Shalaby (violin) was named to the Fall 2014 Dean’s List at the University of Pittsburgh Dietrich College of Arts and Sciences.

Kerry Broker (violin) portrayed Cinderella in Shady Side Academy’s production of Into the Woods (February 6th-8th).

Roy Navid (violin) has completed with honors Level 9 of the Royal Conservatory’s Music Development Program in piano, won 2nd place in the Duquesne Young Artist National Competition 2015 Chamber Music Division (he played piano with two violins and one cello), and played in the pit orchestra for his high school musical Into the Woods.

Devin Lai (violin) was chosen to be the concertmaster for the 2015 West Virginia Middle School All-State Orchestra. He will lead the orchestra in a concert on March 13th in Charleston, West Virginia.

David Skrovanek (cello) was selected to perform at 2015 National Association for Music Education (NAFME) All East Orchestra in Providence, RI.

Swata Alagar (violin) was a finalist in the Pittsburgh Philharmonic Young Artist Concerto Competition.

Hannah Ishizaki (violin) won the 2015 Pittsburgh Philharmonic Young Composer Contest. Her orchestral composition entitled “Variance of a Trio” was played at 2 concerts: Butler County Community College on March 20 and North Hills Middle School on March 21.

Congratulations to all the PYSO string players who were selected to perform in the PMEA District 1 Orchestra Festival on February 4, 5 & 6 at Penn Hills High School.
Violins: Gerry Chen, Rebecca Chen, Ziqi Meng, Devin Moore (concertmaster), Samantha Smith, Jiawen Zhu, Maggie Caballero, Sabine Gross
Violas: James Cunningham (Principal), Ahna Pearson
Cellos: Kyle Johnson (Principal), Janelle Sands, Julia Solomon
Flute: Rebecca Scimio
Clarinet: Elise Orban
Bassoons: Lukas Basse, Liam Skiffington
Trumpet: Joseph Beaver

Enoch Hsiao (violin) won 1st place in the International Piano Competition of Division 2 in Social Music Work 2014 (Social Music Work is a Division of BRAVURA Innovations). Enoch is also one of six winners of Musical Kids of WQED 2014 and was awarded Honorable Mention (3rd Place) of the 2014 International Piano Competition at the Ithaca College School of Music. In addition, Enoch is one of winners of Pittsburgh Concert Society Young Artists Auditions in January 2015. He also won second place for piano in City Music Center’s the 2015 Duquesne Young Artist National Competition Solo Division.

Megan McKelvey (clarinet) placed first clarinet at the 2015 District 1 Honors Band and was selected as principal clarinetist for the Franklin Regional High School production of Mary Poppins.

Elizabeth Sikes (flute) won the TRYPO concerto competition. She will be featured in Concerto for 2 flutes by Cimarosa.

Congratulations to all the PYSO string players who were selected to perform in the PMEA District I Honors Orchestra Festival on November 8 & 9 at Chartiers Valley High School, Bridgeville, PA
Violin I:  Devin Moore, Ziqi Meng, Kerry Broker, Rebecca Chen, Emily Chen
Violin II:  Jiawen Zhu, Rachel Chang
Viola:  Jimmy Cunningham, Ahna Pearson, Nathanael Roberts
Cello: Kyle Johnson, Julia Solomon, William Ren, Janelle Sands, Jaemin Lee

Hannah Ishizaki (violin) had two composition premieres last summer at Curtis Summerfest; her composition for flute and (Violin) “Close of Day” was premiered on July 18th and her composition for small ensemble “The Road Away” was premiered on July 25th. OvreArts Sinfonia premiered her composition “Angel” for small ensemble on October 2nd.

Nathaniel Chen (vello) won 2nd place as a Steinway Society Young Artist in the Louis Streator (Piano) competition, a piano recital competition that has been held at Heinz Hall since 2012.

Megan McKelvey (clarinet) participated in the Carnegie Mellon University Pre-College Wind Ensemble and Orchestra Concerts.  On October 29, she was also selected and participated in the 2014 NAfME All National Honors Band Concert at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, TN.

Over the Summer, Joseph Comella (Violin) attended and performed at the Cambridge International String Academy in England.  He is also a member of the newly formed Chamber Orchestra of Pittsburgh.

Sabine Gross (violin) participated in the 2014 Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, NC.

Jacob Hitt (viola) played solo in the 16th annual Mt Lebanon String Festival with Sherry Kloss on October 15 and 16 at Mt Lebanon High School Theater. This past August he also represented Mt Lebanon High School playing in a string quartet at the Mt. Lebanon Library.

Enoch Hsiao (violin) won 1st Place in the International Piano Competition of Division 2 in Social Music Works 2014(Social Music Works is a Division of BRAVURA Innovations). Enoch is also one of six winners of the Musical Kids of WQED 2014. He also was awarded Honorable Mention (the 3rd Place) of the 2014 International Piano Competition at the Ithaca College School of Music.

This Fall Ziqi Meng (violin) performed Wieniawski’s Scherzo Tarantelle as a soloist with the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra in Greensburg.

Conrad Kosowsky (violin) was valedictorian of his class at Creative and Performing Arts High School in June 2014 and he was also invited to attend the Canada-USA Math Camp for the second time during summer, 2014.

Rebecca Scimio (flute) won 1st Place in the 2014 International Flute Symposium High School Competition as well as 1st Place in the Central Ohio Flute Association Junior Competition. She also participated in the 2014 National Flute Association High School Flute Choir.

 

2013-14 SEASON

This year, PYSO welcomes 42 new orchestra members from following schools:
Bethel Park HS, Canon McMillan HS, CAPA, CMU, Duquesne, Ellis School, Fort Cherry Jr/Sr HS, Fox Chapel HS, Franklin Regional HS, Harrison Central
Home School, Hopewell HS, Indiana Sr HS, IUP, Mellon MS, Mt. Lebanon HS, N Allegheny Intermediate HS, N Allegheny Sr HS, North Hills HS, Penn Trafford HS, Sewickley Academy, Shady Side Academy, SRU, Trinity HS, Wilson Christian Academy, Winchester Thurston HS, and WVU.

This past summer, Ahmer’e Blackman (Bass/Cello) participated in the Inaugural National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America. He was 1 of 120 members accepted from 5,000 applicants. After a brief residency at SUNY Purchase College, the young orchestra toured to Washington D.C., Moscow, St. Petersburg, and concluded with a climactic program at the Proms in London.  Under the direction of Valery Gergiev , the orchestra’s program consisted of Shostakovich’s 10th Symphony, Magiya (a commissioned piece), and Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto performed by world renowned violinist, Joshua Bell.

Janelle Sands (Cello) 
attended the ARIA International Music Academy this past summer, for which she was selected by audition to attend ten days at Mt. Holyoke College in Massachusetts participating in cello master classes and private lessons.

Tommy Starr (Percussion)
 performed timpani in the Mozart Requiem performance with Slippery Rock University Choir at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in March, 2013 and in October 2013, his choral composition Delight Thyself was premeired by the  St. Paul’s Episcopal Choir.

Jonah Trout (Bass
 Trombone) participated in the 2012 All-State Orchestra.  In addition to being a member of PYSO he also is a member of the River City Youth Brass Band.  Jonah and Omri Barak (Trumpet)attended CMU’s Pre-College Music Program last summer.

Eli Naragon (Bass) 
attended CMU Pre-College Jazz Clinic last summer.

Nicole Lennartz (Violin)
 is currently the concertmaster of the CAPA Symphony Orchestra, which performed Miss Saigon at the Byham theater this past October.  She also participated in CMU Pre-College wind ensemble this year, on flute, and was 4th chair.

Nathaniel Hoyt (Cello) 
attended the Mark O’Connor String Camp at the Berklee  College of Music in Boston this past summer.

Bethany Lueers (Clarinet)
 was selected to attend the Buffet International Clarinet Academy in Jacksonville, Florida, July 2013, studying with Stanley Drucker, Dan Gilbert, Francois Moisan, Jonathan Gunn, and Ixi Chen.

Nathaniel Chen (Cello)
 was a January 2012 winner of the Pittsburgh Concert Society for piano and in Spring of 2012 was a Steinway Society Young Artist.  Nathaniel attended  Ithaca College Summer Piano Camp in the summer of 2012 and in September of 2012 he played piano at Heinz Hall for Steinway Society Young Artist pre-concert series.

Katina Psomiadis (Flute)
 is a Flute Performance and Psychology double major at Duquesne University where she is also  a member of the Duquesne University Wind Symphony and Flute Choir.  In high school she was involved in the Philadelphia Young Artists Orchestra and won the Flute Society of Greater Philadelphia Concerto Competition and the Young Musicians Community Orchestra in Montgomery County’s Concerto Competition where she performed at the Kimmel Center in her junior year of high school.  Last summer she attended Aria summer music camp at Mount Holyoke, Massachusetts where she studied under flute professors Jonathan Keeble, Judith Mendenhall, John Thorne, and Linda Toote.

Megan McKelvey (Clarinet)
 won second place at the 2013 Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra Yong Artists Competition.  She attended the Interlochen Center for the Arts’ inagural Clarinet Institute and was selected for the 2013 PMEA District I Honors Band.

Christopher Petricca (Trombone)
 is the Trombone Section Leader and Vice President of the Fort Cherry School District Marching/Concert Band. His past performances include The Walt Disney World “Celebrate a Dream Come True” Parade as well as participation in the
Pennsylvania Music Educator’s Association (PMEA) District Band, Honors Band, District & Regional Chorus as well as Washington County Music Educator’s Association (WCMEA) Band and Chorus Concerts.

Katja Kochvar (Flute)
 was the 2013 winner of the Woodbridge Flute Choir Concerto Competition was a Junior High Finalist in the MidAtlantic Flute Fair Competition.  She placed first chair in the PMEA Honors Band.

Jacob McAleavey (Bass)
 is a student at CAPA High School and plays in their orchestra.  He has participated in PMEA District 1 Senior, Western region and All-state orchestras.  In addition to volunteering for the Pittsburgh Savoyards, Jason has been a mentor for the Pittsburgh Youth Philharmonic Orchestra.

Eric Homol (Trombone) 
was a participant of the 2013 PMEA All-State Orchestra.

Gabrielle Faetini (Violin)
 attended a six week course of violin study at Brevard Music Center in Brevard, NC last summer.

 

2012-13 SEASON:

As a grand winner of 2013 National Young Musicians Showcase Competition, NJ, Sophia Lee (Harp) performed a harp solo at Carnegie Hall, NYC in April 2013. Also, she has been invited to perform a harp solo at the 9th USA International Harp Competition’s Stars of Tomorrow, Indiana, in July 2013.

Julie Choe (Violin) performed Bruch Concerto no.1 First Movement at PMTA Honor’s recital as one of the winners of the 2013 Lois Streator/Lois Smith Memorial Award Competition in April, 2013.

Rebecca Silverstein (Flute) participated in PMEA Region Chorus and the NAfME (MENC) All-Eastern Division Conference as an Alto 1 in the Mixed Chorus.  On May 4th, Rebecca performed for the Saturday Light Brigade on WRCT 88.3 FM.

Alexis Trvobovich (Viola) was awarded the Mt. Lebanon High School String Festival Scholarship and the National School Orchestra Award and was elected President of her high school orchestra. Alexis was accepted into the music performance programs at Duquesne University, West Virginia University, and Heidelberg University.

Jake Hitt (Viola) attended Music for ALL “Orchestra America National Festival” in Indianapolis, Indiana in March 2013.

Jacob Pallo (Trumpet) was chosen to be the 2013 recipient of the Greenville Symphony Orchestra Award Scholarship.  He was recognized at the GSO Spring Concert, held May 11, 2013 in the William A. Passavant Center on the campus of Thiel College, Greenville, Pennsylvania.

Isaac Mastalski (Viola) won 2nd place at the annual Indiana Arts Council Young Artists Competition.

Michaela Valenta (Cello) qualified to enter the 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program. She is among the 50,000 highest scoring participants out of the 1.5 million students who took the test.

Rachel Silverstein (Flute) is a nominee for a Gene Kelly award for supporting lead in Quaker Valley’s production of “Anything Goes”.

Gabrielle Faetini (Violin)  received a merit scholarship to attend a six week program at Brevard Music Center in North Carolina. She also performed in a jazz ensemble in support of Dr. Alton Merrell’s original compositions for his PhD.  This past year, Gabrielle volunteered to teach young string players in an after school orchestra program at the Environmental Charter School.

Evan Reichenfeld (Bass), Ziqi Meng (Violin) and Jake Hitt (Viola) performed in the Orchestra for Mt. Lebanon HS production of Seussical from May 9-11.

Inori Sakai (Violin) one first place in the 2013 Duquesne Young Artists’ National Concerto Competition.

Nicole Lennartz (Violin) performed Csardas by Vittorio Monti at the CAPA concerto concert in February, accompanied by Mara Mignogna (member of PYSO Violin II) on piano.

Noah Kahrs (Percussion) received an Honorable Mention in the 2013 ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Young Composers Awards; this summer, he will be studying composition at the European American Musical Alliance Summer Program in Paris.

Mark Debski (Oboe) and Rebecca Silverstein (Flute) were recently named a recipient for the Blackwood Theater Organ Society scholarship.

Joey Comella (Violin) was named one of the winners in the WQED Musical Kids competition.  As winner, he will be performing twice on the main stage at the Three Rivers Arts Festival on June 10.  Joey also won second place in the Duquesne Young Artist National Competition.

Kylee O’Donnell (Flute) won the Butler Symphony Orchestra 2013 Young Artist Competition, and performed the Chaminade Concertino for flute and orchestra in March. This summer she will attend Orford Music Academy in Canada to study with Robert Langevin and Mathieu Dufour