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Click here if you'd like tickets to attend the 2016 Young Artists Debut! Concerto Concert on April 1, 2016!

The 2016 Winners Are...

MetroArts Inc. Executive Artistic Director and Conductor, Niel DePonte, announced the 22nd Young Artists Debut! Van Buren Competition & Concerto Concert winners who will make their concert debut on Friday, April 1st, at 7:30 PM at Lincoln Hall at Portland State University.

The nine soloists, ages 9-21, were selected from 34 semi-finalists at auditions held on January 9th at Lewis & Clark College. Winners will perform with DePonte and an orchestra drawn from the ranks of the Oregon Symphony and Oregon Ballet Theatre orchestras. The concert will be broadcast live on All Classical Portland 89.9 FM. and streamed worldwide.

"This is a very special class chosen not only for their current level of artistry but also because our younger soloists show a musical gift that offers the promise of an amazing future in music for them," said DePonte, who also serves as the Music Director and Conductor for Oregon Ballet Theater. DePonte is also a Grammy Award nominated soloist.

Carlyle Cooney, age 15
Mezzo Soprano, Portland
Student of Lorraine Nubar, two-time Young Artists Debut! Competition & Concerto Concert winner.
Song selection to be determined.


Saori Erickson, age 21
Soprano, Portland
Junior at Portland State University, student of Pamela South.
Song selection to be determined.


Hanami Froom, age 9
Violin, Portland
4th grader at Oregon Virtual Academy, student of Carol Sindell. Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, Movement 3.
Click here to view audition.

Aveek Ganguly, age 16
Piano, Portland
Sophomore at Westview High School, student of Mark Westcott, two-time Young Artists Debut! Competition & Concerto Concert winner.
St Saens 2nd Piano Concerto, 3rd movement.

Symphony Koss, age 14
Violin, Vancouver, WA, Freshman at Columbia River High School, student of Kathryn Gray.
Barber Violin Concerto, Movement 1.


Richard Lu, age 17
Cello, Camas, WA
Senior at Skyview High School, student of Marilyn de Oliveira.
Elgar Cello Concerto, Movement 4


Aaron Petit, age 18
Piano, Beaverton
Student of Mark Westcott. Chopin Piano Concerto No.1 E min, Movement 1.

Christine Wey, age 18,
Piano, Vancouver, WA
Senior at Union High School, student of Elizabeth Stern.
Beethoven 3rd Piano Concerto, Movement

Samuel Zacharia, age 16, Viola, Portland
Homeschooled Junior, student of Brian Quincy.
Stamitz Viola Concerto in D Major.

Each young artist will perform their concerto at the April 1st concert, and will participate in three months of individualized coaching sessions with DePonte. At these sessions, winners not only discuss the interpretation of their concertos, but also how to solo with an orchestra, ways to approach repertoire, and what it takes to be a professional musician.

"These are incredibly talented young people. My goal is to challenge them to move towards even higher levels of performance and interpretive depth over three months," said DePonte. "Working with these kids is the most rewarding work I do every year."

Click here if you'd like tickets to attend the 2016 Young Artists Debut! Concerto Concert on April 1, 2016!

**Photos by Lloyd Lemmermann**

Past Young Artists Debut! Winners

Some noteworthy former Young Artists Debut! Competition & Concerto Concert winners include former Miss America and vocalist Katie Harman, Principal Bassoon of the Chicago Symphony Keith Bunke, 2009, pianist and winner of Germany's prestigious ARD Competition Ben Kim, 2001, and violinist, and currently concertmaster at La Scala Opera House in Milan, Italy, Laura Marzadori, 2005.

2017 Application

The 2017 23rd Young Artists Debut! Van Buren Competition & Concert application will be available on or before August 30, 2016. To review the 2016 requirements, you can access the application here.

Our sincerest gratitude to:
The Brookby Foundation
John Van Buren
Regional Arts and Culture Council

If you would like to support this effort, please donate to MetroArts Inc. today by clicking here.