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Competition for Young Musicians

Congratulations to the 2017–2018 Winners

Competition winner Davidson
Competition winner Lee
Competition winner Zhu

For the first time since 1973–1974, there are three winners of the Competition for Young Musicians. All are high school juniors. David Davisson will play the first movement of Mozart’s Flute Concerto in G major, Sean Lee will play the first movement of Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1, and Joey Zhu will play the first movement of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 at the Symphony concert on February 24, 2018.

General Information

The Livermore-Amador Symphony Association conducted its 45th Competition for Young Musicians on October 1, 2017. The winners will perform as soloists with the Symphony in February and will be awarded $500.00.

The annual competition is open to instrumentalists and vocalists who reside or attend school in Livermore, Pleasanton, Sunol, Dublin, or San Ramon, California. Students are eligible through grade 12. If not enrolled in high school, the maximum age is 17. All instruments are considered.

Applicants must submit a completed application form, a non-refundable fee of $8.00, and, for preliminary screening, a recording of their playing. Applicants may post a recording (preferably a video) to YouTube and send a link via e-mail. (The application deadline for 2017–18 was September 10, 2017.) Music is to be chosen from the standard repertoire for orchestra, with some restrictions. [This year, compositions performed by the Symphony in 2016–2017 (Beethoven piano concerto no. 1, Grieg piano concerto; Sibelius violin concerto; voice—Mozart “Exsultate, Jubilate”) and to be performed in 2017–2018 (Korngold violin concerto, Elgar cello concerto) were not to be chosen.] The selection, one movement of a concerto or a comparable work, should have a minimum length of approximately 10 minutes. For the preliminary screenings, recordings for non-pianists should have piano accompaniment. For piano recordings, accompaniment is not essential. All applicants will be notified of the outcome of the preliminary screening and all recording discs will be returned.

Those accepted to compete perform in person before a panel of judges, including the Music Director. Contestants must provide their own accompanists. Each student will receive a written evaluation. Taken into consideration are intonation, tone quality, technique, style/interpretation, and memorization. The judges are requested, but not required, to select two winners not competing on the same instrument. The decision of the judges is final. If, in the opinion of the judges, none of those competing is qualified, a winner will not be selected.

(See a list of past winners and the pieces they played.)

Winners, as soloists, will perform the same music with which they competed. Previous winners may re-apply after an intervening year. However, anyone who has performed two times as a soloist with the Symphony cannot be considered as a contestant. If you have any questions you may contact Competition Committee Chair Jutta Massoud ( or 925.525.6070) or committee member Denise Leddon ( or 925.699.2738).

2016–2017 Winners
Sehyun (Eunice) Lee Felix Yu-Shuan Shen
Sehyun (Eunice) Lee (right) and Felix Yu-Shuan Shen (left) performed with the Symphony on February 18, 2017.

2015–2016 Winners
photo of Jiho Choi photo of Tony Kim
Jiho Choi (left) and Dong Hui (Tony) Kim (right) performed with the Symphony on February 20, 2016.

2014–2015 Winners
photo of Misha Galant photo of Vincent Liu Misha Galant (right) and Vincent Liu (left) performed with the Symphony on Feb. 21, 2015.

2013–2014 Winners
photo of Arie Chen photo of Robert Shi  
Arie Chen and Robert Shi performed with the Symphony at its concert on February 22, 2014.

2012–2013 Winners
photo of Angel Kim photo of Vivian Sung  
Young Sun (Angel) Kim and Vivian Sung performed with the Symphony at its concert on February 23, 2013.

2011–2012 Winners
photo of Clifford Tam photo of Christine Xu 
Clifford Tam and Christine Xu performed with the Symphony at its concert on February 11, 2012.


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