2020 - 2021 Award Accolades

 This list of awards does not include master classes or community service. 



Where students will be this summer…


Sameer Agrawal, violin

June 20 - Recording Mozart 5 with Oistrakh Symphony for concert to be streamed  

The Oistrakh Symphony of Chicago was founded in 2005. The vision of OSC is to offer audiences and musicians exposure to a broad classical repertoire, performed at the highest level. The symphony is in residence at DePaul University.


June 20 - July 17 - Center Stage Strings - Virtual, full scholarship from Starling Foundation

Center Stage Strings was founded by renowned violinist and U-M Professor Danielle Belen to develop the talents of serious young classical music students in the areas of solo and chamber music performance. The natural beauty of the campus surroundings and the music intertwine in this four-week long institute to create a unique summer experience.

Lessons with Danielle Belen, Sang Mee Lee, and others.



Mid-July through end of August – Virtual Curtis Mentors Network, full scholarship from CMPI  - The Curtis Mentor Network develops overall musicianship and prepares students for auditions, competitions, and performances. Students receive one-on-one lessons and attend studio classes led by Curtis mentors.




Esme Arias-Kim, violin

Yellow Barn Young Artist Program - Putney, VT

Esme is playing in four groups and rehearsing/coaching almost seven hours a day.   She will perform in four different concerts for a live vaccinated audience, all in three weeks’ time.  Yellow Barn, an international center for chamber music, encourages discovery in the studio, classroom, and concert hall; explores the craft of musical interpretation; and illuminates our world through the unique experience of music. Based in Putney, Vermont with a national agenda and a growing international presence, Yellow Barn draws young professional musicians from the United States, Europe, Middle East, and Asia. 



Ma’ayan Kertcher, cello  

June 20th to July 4th -  St. Paul Chamber Music Institute,  St. Paul, Minnesota

The Saint Paul Chamber Music Institute (SPCMI) is an immersive and exciting two-week chamber music program and festival for college and pre-college string players during which world-renowned faculty work with student ensembles each day as coaches, instrumental teachers, and mentors. Music making skills including interpretation, ensemble technique, listening, and communication with an audience are emphasized.



July 25th to August 12 - Keshet Eilon Summer Mastercourse, Kibbutz Eilon, Israel

Ma’ayan was chosen to be a part of a limited number of students from around the world, ages 16-26, to participate in the hybrid program of the

International String Summer Mastercourse of Keshet Eilon, Israel. The three-week program for young violinists, violists and cellists from Israel and around the world, offers personal instruction by distinguished teachers, masterclasses, innovative workshops, opportunities to perform as soloists and as chamber music players in concerts, and a unique archery sports program for string instrumentalists. The Mastercourse is attended each summer by some 50-60 outstanding string students from all parts of the world, many of whom are prizewinners of international competitions. Approximately 1,400 alumni of Keshet Eilon throughout the world have won the world’s most important musical competitions and have embarked upon magnificent careers as soloists; others lead renowned orchestras. 




Ashley Kim and graduate Colin Song – The duo will perform Carnival of the Animals on August 11th with the Grant Park Orchestra. It will take place at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion (Millennium Park) from 6:30pm to 8:00pm. Let’s try to get down there to cheer them on!



Sidney Lee, viola

July and August - Perlman Music Program, Shelter Island, New York

The Perlman Music Program is a summer program for gifted young musicians. Founded by Toby Perlman, wife of Israeli-American violinist Itzhak Perlman, in 1995, the program is headquartered in Shelter Island, New York.   PMP’s signature program is the Summer Music School (aka The “Littles” Program), which welcomes gifted violin, viola, and cello students ages 12-18 into a richly supportive musical community. Each summer, 40 musicians from around the world come together for a seven-week residency.  PMP’s world-class faculty, led by acclaimed violinist Itzhak Perlman, oversee a curriculum of solo, chamber music, and orchestral repertoire at the highest level. https://www.perlmanmusicprogram.org/summer-music-school


Xavier Miyazaki, cello

Meadowmount School of Music  - Virtual  

For over 77 years, Meadowmount’s supportive, structured environment has helped students achieve major careers as soloists, chamber musicians and orchestra players. The faculty of internationally renowned teachers and performers is dedicated to helping aspiring musicians develop technical skills, interpretive expertise and individual artistry at the highest level of excellence. Xavier will study with Hans Jensen. http://www.meadowmount.com/


Katya Moeller, violin

Red Cedar Chamber Music will present Music by the Gross, featuring 4 Concerti Grossi for an orchestra of 11, June 18-20, 2021. Red Cedar’s 25th season has focused heavily on emerging artists with concerts that included the directors sons, Oliver (viola) and Adrian (cello), as well as the inspiring 16-year-old violinist Katya Moeller of Iowa City. In May, Red Cedar Chamber Music and Katya presented The Last Quintet, featuring Schubert’s grand string quintet. 



Myroslav Mykhailenko, piano

July 5 – 17 - Palmetto International Piano Festival, Due West, SC

A unique program of intensive piano study designed for middle and high school students who are serious about piano playing. Set on the beautiful campus of Erskine College. PIPF offers a focused environment for concentrated study.



Jan Nedvetsky, cello

Jan is the opening performance for the CMPI fundraiser, a virtual celebration of diversity in classical music. Jan will perform The Song of the Black Swan by Heitor Villa-Lobos.


June 27-July 4th - International Cello Masterclass in Moulin D’Ande, France


Musica Mundi Chamber Music Festival in Waterloo, Belgium

The mission of Musica Mundi is to develop the musical and human potential of young talents from all over the world. Each summer for the last 22 years, Musica Mundi has been holding an international chamber music course and festival for young musicians aged 10 to 20. Each year, the course is attended by some 70 participants from all corners of the world: 30 countries were represented in 2019.



Kate Nelson, violin

4th of July  - Visiting Breckenridge, CO

July 17-August 7 - Bowdoin International Music Festival -  Brunswick, ME

Every summer, the Festival’s instrumental program provides an intensive and in-depth exploration of chamber and solo music for 250 students. The summer institute offers lessons, studio classes, coachings with Festival faculty, and ample performance opportunities. Festival students are defined by their dedication, creativity, curiosity, and passion for excellence in music. Festival alumni are represented in major orchestras, renowned ensembles, and conservatories worldwide. Notable alumni include Emanuel Ax, Derek Bermel, Ray Chen, and Jennifer Koh.



Veronica Rokicki, violin

July 26 – August 8 Atlantic Music Festival, Waterville, ME

The Atlantic Music Festival Instrumental provides an immersive six-week summer experience filled with music-making at the highest level. Through a combination of lessons, master classes, and performances, participants learn from world-renowned faculty members and collaborate with exceptional peers.



Angelica She, violin

American Legion Auxiliary Illini Girls State - Virtual   

Dedicated to providing training for young women in city, county, and state government. Students are placed into a two party system and will run for office, campaign, vote, and write legislation pertinent to American Legion Auxiliary Illini Girls State as well as the state and nation. It is structured like a mock government camp that simulates the US government, with people getting elected into positions like Governor (state level, in which Angelica is participating in) and Senator (if you make it to the national level).



Women’s Technology Program (WTP)  - MIT, Cambridge, MA

The Women's Technology Program (WTP) was created in 2002 to encourage young women with strong math, science, and analytical abilities to pursue studies in engineering and computer science. The program provides high school students with little or no prior background in engineering and computer science with positive female role models, college-level computing and engineering experience, and an understanding of what engineers and computer scientists do and how they work.  Angelica will be attending the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science track. It’s basically an introductory course on these two topics to encourage STEM learning in young women for people of color and other underrepresented individuals.



Carrie Wang, violin

Center Stage Strings – Virtual

Center Stage Strings was founded by renowned violinist and U-M Professor Danielle Belen to develop the talents of serious young classical music students in the areas of solo and chamber music performance. In addition to the student-driven coursework of Center Stage Strings, there are also Guest Artist Recitals, Faculty Concerts and Masterclasses presented by world class artists and teachers.




Mia Wimbiscus, cello

Orford Music Academy  -  Virtual  

Orford is for the most gifted emerging musicians, from Canada and around the world, to have access to the teachings of great masters. The Academy provides lessons, master classes and workshops.




Clara Zhang, piano

IU Summer Piano Academy Virtual

IU offers serious young pianists seeking growth and lifelong friendships an intensive 3-week program under guidance of world-class master teachers and nurturing faculty. Virtual in its 35th year, this premier summer institute serves talented pianists ages 12-19.  Included are two private lessons per week, theory, group classes, and masterclasses with world-class artists Eteri Andjaparidze, Edward Auer, Frederic Chiu, and Arnaldo Cohen, to name a few.






The Omaggio String Quartets advanced to the Junior String Division Semifinals of the 2021 Virtual Fischoff Chamber Music Competition. 



Omaggio String Quartet, coached by Mathias Tacke

Tara Hagle, Elinor Detmer, Abigail Park, Jan Nedvetsky



Carmen String Quartet, coached by Sang Mee Lee

Katherine Nelson, Veronica Rokicki, Kimberly LaFranzo, Eytan Raviv


Zephyr String Quartet, coached by Rodolfo Vieira

Esme Arias-Kim, Isabel Chen, Sidney Lee, Mia Wimbiscus





16th Annual St. Paul String Quartet Competition

The St. Paul Chamber Music String Competition resulted in a series of awards for the Omaggio Quartet (Tara Hagle, Elinor Detmer, Abigail Park and Jan Nedvetsky), hosted virtually on YouTube on Saturday, April 24. The group is coached by Mathias Tacke.


First place overall,  Haydn and BIPOC* first prizes - Stars Aligned Quartet - St. Francisco,CA pre-college program

Second place - DAJJ Quartet - Chamber Music Connection - Columbus, Ohio pre-college program 

Third place, Audience Prize, Haydn Honorable Mention and BIPOC Honorable Mention - Omaggio Quartet

The Academy of the Music Institute of Chicago, Evanston, IL pre-college program


*Black, Indigenous, Persons Of Color   Adjudicators- St. Lawrence String Quartet

Watch the competition performances, interviews, and winner announcements  https://youtu.be/UohaP0r50c4 


The Carmen Quartet, Kate Nelson, Veronica Rokicki, Kimberly LaFranzo, Eytan Raviv, coached by Sang Mee Lee, was a finalist in the competition.


 The Saint Paul String Quartet Competition's primary mission is to celebrate excellence in string quartet playing, foster an increased appreciation for the chamber music art form, and enhance the music culture in this country.


2021 American Protege International Concerto Competition

Sidney Lee, viola student of Davis King and Roland Vamos, was awarded First Place in the 2021 American Protege International Concerto Competition, playing the Walton Viola Concerto.  She has been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall in NY in the Spring of 2022.


98th Annual Schubert Club Bruce P. Carlson Student Scholarship Competition

Cellist Amelia Zitoun, student of Horacio Contreras,  was just awarded First Place - Anne French Burnham Award, in the Strings Level I division of the 98th Annual Schubert Club Bruce P. Carlson Student Scholarship Competition. Violinist Katya Moeller, student of Almita Vamos, won the Second Place Helen Hunt Memorial Award in the Strings Level II division. The Schubert Club Student Scholarship Competition, held each spring, awards a total of over $50,000 annually to young musicians to be used for further musical education.


American Association for the Development of the Gifted and Talented (AADGT) International Young Musicians Competition

Pianist Mark Zhu, student of Yana Reznik, was awarded a GOLD Medal [piano, Group G (Age 16– 18)]  in the AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR DEVELOPMENT OF THE GIFTED AND TALENTED (AADGT) International Young Musicians Competition celebrating Franz Liszt (1811-1885), Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921) and Astor Piazzolla (1921-1992).  GOLD and SILVER MEDALS WINNERS will be invited for professional video recordings in the New York area with receiving medals and certificates. 


 2021 Baroque Music Charleston International Music Competition

Sonya Jones and Katya Moeller, students of Almita Vamos, tied for 1st prize in the 2021 Baroque Music Charleston International Music Competition, Ages 15-16 category.

You can enjoy both peformances of JS Bach Sonata in G Minor BWV 1001, I. Adagio

Sonya’s performance https://youtu.be/8OS1LETLc0Q

Katya’s performance https://youtu.be/xJR5fCODn7I



Peoria Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Competition

Violinist Elinor Detmer won the Peoria Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Competition. YAC winners receive a cash prize and perform with the Peoria Symphony Orchestra at the Annual Student Concert and at the Peoria Symphony Guild Annual Spring Luncheon. The Peoria Symphony Orchestra is an American orchestra based in Peoria, Illinois conducted by George Stelluto. Founded in 1897 as Bradley University's Bradley Symphony Orchestra, it is the fourteenth oldest orchestra in the United States.




48th Annual Natioal Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition

The Carmen, Omaggio, and Zephyr String Quartets advance to the Junior String Division Quarterfinals of the 2021 Virtual Fischoff Chamber Music Competition. Watch for details to tune in May 14-16, 2021.


Omaggio String Quartet, coached by Mathias Tacke

Tara Hagle, Elinor Detmer, Abigail Park, Jan Nedvetsky


Carmen String Quartet, coached by Sang Mee Lee

Katherine Nelson, Veronica Rokicki, Kimberly LaFranzo, Eytan Raviv


Zephyr String Quartet, coached by Rodolfo Vieira

Esme Arias-Kim, Isabel Chen, Sidney Lee, Mia Wimbiscus


DuPage Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Audition Winners 

Esme Arias-Kim, Violin, Hoffman Estates, IL, student of Almita Vamos

Veronica Rokicki, Violin, Arlington Heights, IL, student of Almita Vamos

Mia Wimbiscus, Cello, Wilmette, IL, student of Hans Jensen


The DSO will award up to 6 cash prizes of $200 each for the 2021 Young Artists Auditions. Selected winters will have their auditions shared via the DSO website and various social media platforms. If it proves feasible, selected winners will also have the opportunity to participate in a live-streamed recital during the spring. The DSO strives to encourage serious study and musical excellence among young musicians through its annual Young Artists Auditions. https://www.dupagesymphony.org/yaa


Madison Symphony Orchestra’s 2021 Bolz Young Artist Competition 

Carrie Wang, violin student of Sang Mee Lee, received Honorable Mention in the highly competitive Madison Symphony Orchestra’s 2021 Bolz Young Artist Competition on March 3. She received honorable mention in the Final Forte (final round). The four finalists performed their concerto selections with piano accompaniment for a panel of three judges. 

Carrie also participated in the La Crosse Symphony Orchestra Rising Stars Virtual Competition, performing Mozart Violin Concerto No. 5 in A Major, Mvmt 1.in January. Carrie  won 3rd place in the final round. 


Bach with a View International Competition and Festival for Young Artists

Clara Zhang, piano student of Soo Young Lee,  received first prize in the senior division of the Bach with a View International Competition and Festival for Young Artists. The competition focused entirely on works by Johann Sebastian Bach, in conjunction with Bach’s birthday earlier in March. Sheridan Music Studio - News 




Rembrandt Chamber Musicians Annual High School Chamber Music Competition 

Second Place: Carmen Quartet coached by Sang Mee Lee

Katharine Nelson, Veronica Rokicki, Kimberly LaFranzo, Ethan Raviv

Honorable Mentions:
Salice Piano Quartet

Myroslav Mykhailenko, Carrie Wang, Angelica She coached by Claudia Lasareff-Mironoff and Mark George


Zephyr String Quartet

Esme Arias-Kim, Isabel Chen, Sidney Lee, Mia Wimbiscus coached by Rodolfo Vieira


Founded in 1995, the Rembrandt Chamber Musicians Annual High School Chamber Music Competition is widely regarded as one of the premier competitions of its kind in the Midwest, drawing participants from the Music Institute of Chicago, Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras, Midwest Young Artists, Merit School of Music, and a variety of public and private schools. In addition to the prestige of being named Rembrandt Young Artists, winning ensembles receive cash prizes, master class instruction from Rembrandt musicians, and performance opportunities throughout the region. Competition winners also participate in the RYA Outreach Program, bringing interactive educational sessions to Chicago-area schools that lack an established music program.


Chicago National Chamber Music Competition

2021 OPEN DIVISION, Strings and Piano Category - Zephyr String Quartet and coach Rodolfo Vieira, received Honorable Mention.

Esme Arias-Kim, Isabel Chen, Sidney Lee, Mia Wimbiscus




American Protégé International Piano & Strings Competition 2021

 Mark Zhu, student of Yana Reznik, was chosen as a First Place Winner (Intermediate Category) of the American Protégé International Piano & Strings Competition 2021   . Mark will be included in the Season 2022 Recitals at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. American Protégé is designed for young musicians, actors and singers on the path to a successful career. Let’s hope the country gets healthy so a live concert will be on Mark’s calendar next year.



DePaul Concerto Festival for Young Performers

The DePaul Concerto Festival for Young Performers was founded in 2003 to provide an opportunity for intermediate level pianists in the Community Music Division to perform with an orchestra. Repertoire was selected from sonatina movements and short piano pieces for which string accompaniments were available. Auditions were held and eight winners were selected to perform with the DePaul Youth String Orchestra. 

In 2004, the Festival was expanded to include violin students and also offered a wider range of repertoire for pianists. In 2006, cello and flute were added to the roster of instruments. To accommodate the increasing difficulty of repertoire, a decision was made to conduct the Festival with a full symphony orchestra. A partnership was formed in 2007 with the Oistrakh Symphony of Chicago under the direction of Mina Zikri. That year, thirteen winners had the privilege of performing a concerto movement in concert. 


In 2008, the Festival was opened to students outside of the Community Music Division. Viola was added in 2009, clarinet in 2012, and oboe and bassoon in 2013. Today the DePaul Concerto Festival attracts nearly 150 participants in piano, strings, and woodwinds from the Midwest who audition for a chance to perform a movement of a concerto with the Oistrakh Symphony of Chicago.



Honorable Mention with Distinction

Mia Wimbiscus, 17, Wilmette, Hans Jorgen Jensen

Honorable Mention

Jan Vargas Nedvetsky, 14, Wilmette, Horacio Contreras



Honorable Mention

Sidney Lee, 16, Arlington Heights, Davis King and Roland Vamos  




Sameer Agrawal, 15, Chicago, Sang Mee Lee

Elinor Detmer, 16, Chicago, Almita Vamos Davis King  

Kelly Kim, 16, Northbrook, Almita Vamos


Honorable Mention with Distinction

Sonya Jones, 16, Chicago, Almita Vamos  

Honorable Mention

Carrie Wang, 16, Brookfield, WI, Sang Mee Lee   



Walgreens National Virtual Concerto Competition

Walgreens Corporation’s annual sponsorship enables MYAC to provide an outstanding panel of judges, written performance evaluations and a performance goal to work towards over the winter holiday breaks. Over 200 exceptional young musicians from all corners of the country, participate in the Midwest Young Artists Conservatory's 2020 Walgreens National Concerto Competition at the end of December.   


Open Junior division:

Early Music Category

Honorable Mention

Jan Vargas-Nedvetsky, 14, Wilmette, cello, Dr. Horacio Contreras


Open Senior Division

Open Senior Division and Overall Open Division Winner

String Category Winner

Esme Arias-Kim, 15, violin, Hoffman Estates, Almita Vamos


Open Senior Division

String Category Honorable Mention:

Isabel Chen, 17, violin, Northbrook, Almita Vamos


Early Music Category Winner:

Isabel Chen, 17, Northbrook, violin,  Almita Vamos



2021 National YoungArts Foundation Competition

The YoungArts’ National Arts Competition program is an application-based award for emerging artists ages 15–18 or in grades 10–12. Selected through a blind adjudication process, winners are chosen for their caliber of artistic achievement in three categories: Finalist, Honorable Mention, and Merit. During this intensive program, Finalists across 10 artistic disciplines participate in classes and workshops with internationally recognized leaders in their fields. This year, the 2021 program, “National YoungArts Week +”, will take place virtually.
Winner Honorable Mention: Katya Moeller, Classical Music/Violin
Winner Honorable Mention: Ashley Kim, Classical Music/Piano
Honorable Mention: The YoungArts Honorable Mention award level recognizes work that demonstrates exceptional technique; a strong sense of artistry; and a depth of thinking/performance that exceeds the level of peers at this career stage.


FALL 2020


Young Artists Division at the 1st Harmonium OnlinePlus International Music Competition

Congratulations to Katya Moeller, who earned  2nd Prize in the Young Artists Division at the 1st Harmonium OnlinePlus International Music Competition. It is an online comp in Yerevan, Armenia.

In addition, Katya also won the 1st prize at the ODIN International Music Online Competition Europen Academic Artists Association. 


Illinois Music Education Association (IMLEA) District Festivals 

Each year the IMLEA District Festivals are well represented by Academy students. This year was no different, although it was a virtual experience due to COVID-19.Congratulations to the Academy Fellows in the District 7 Senior Orchestra. The students attended master classes that covered technique, performance tips, and the repertoire prepared of the festival.

Kelly Kim,  Associate Violin Concertmaster
Angelica She, Principal Violist
Stefan Westerberg, Principal Cellist

The Illinois Music Education Association exists to advocate for universal access to comprehensive music education; deliver exemplary professional development for educators; and provide outstanding musical experiences for all Illinois learners facilitated by licensed music educators.


2020 Steinway Virtual Piano Competition 

The 2020 STEINWAY VIRTUAL PIANO COMPETITION, open to pianists ages 17 and under who are residents of the United States and Canada, is an extension of our unwavering commitment to the pursuit of superior artistic expression through piano performance during these unprecedented times.

Chicago Regionals | Division III
1st place -  Zachary Guo  (Soo Lee)  

Illinois State Music Teachers Association (ISMTA)

ISMTA Piano Competition is a single tier competition offered at 2 different locations, ISMTA Piano Competition NORTH and ISMTA Piano Competition SOUTH.  Each competition is run independently with separate chairs and winners.
Junior Division
3rd Place -  Zachary Guo  (Soo Lee)
Senior Division
2nd Place -  Kimiko Darcy (Matthew Hagle)
Music Teachers National Association (MTNA)

The MTNA National Competitions are the most successful and prestigious student competitions in the country. Each year, thousands of students compete for top prizes and national recognition. The purpose of the Music Teachers National Association Performance competitions is to provide educational experiences for students and teachers and to recognize exceptionally talented young artists and their teachers in their pursuit of musical excellence.
The three-tiered Junior, Senior and Young Artist Performance Competitions begin with state competitions. The winners/representatives of each state's competitions advance to a video-only division competition. Division winners compete in the national finals at the annual MTNA National Conference.
2020 MTNA Illinois State Performance Competition Winners
 Illinois Junior Piano Performance – 26 entries 
Honorable Mention -  Zachary Guo (Soo Lee)
Illinois Senior Piano Performance- 22 entries
Winner – Ashley Kim (James Giles, Matthew Hagle)
Honorable Mention – Kimiko Darcy (Matthew Hagle)
Illinois Senior Performance String-15 entries
Winner – Isabella Brown, violin (Almita Vamos) 
Alternate – Esme Arias-Kim, violin (Almita Vamos)
Honorable Mention – Sidney Lee, viola (Roland Vamos and Davis King) and Mia Wimbiscus (Hans Jensen)


Iowa State Winner - Katya Moeller, violin (Almita Vamos) and West Central Divison - Senior-Alternate Winner


2020 Sejong Virtual Music Competition

The goals of the Sejong Music Competition are to discover talented young musicians and encourage them in their studies, and to also introduce traditional Korean music expressed through Western media. Through this competition we hope to increase the awareness and understanding of Korea’s cultural heritage amongst the younger generations growing up in the United States so as to promote harmony among people of various ethnic backgrounds and bridge Asian and Western cultures. This year’s competition was held on October 10 (Piano) and October 24 (Violin).  
Congratulations to all of the Academy participants and winners! Please review the entire list of winners, as MIC is proud of Academy and Community Music School students in every division. This was a national competition this year since it is virtual. 135 entrants. 35 chosen to be placed and as finalists. Watch for a full listing on the MIC website.
Violin Senior Division
First -  Esme Arias-Kim (Almita Vamos)
Second - Abigail Park (Almita Vamos)
Finalists: Sonya Jones (Almita Vamos and Davis King) and Kelly Kim (Almita Vamos)
Piano Senior Division
Honorable Mention: Zachary Guo (Soo Lee)


Lisker Music Foundation Young Artists Scholarship Competition

The Lisker Music Foundation is a passionate non-profit organization which strives to support young artists by offering them the platform to showcase their brilliant abilities, while simultaneously infusing the community with world class music making. We are very excited to announce our 2nd annual Young Artist Scholarship Competition for Instrumentalists.

Academy students swept the 2020 Lisker Music Foundation Young Artists Scholarship Competition, with winners in all three instruments:
Violin - Abigail Park, student of Almita Vamos
Piano - Zachary Guo, student of Soo Young Lee
Cello - Jan Nedvetsky, student of Horacio Contreras
The students will each be awarded a scholarship and an opportunity to perform on the LMF series. In 2019, Esme Arias-Kim was the winner of the Violin LMF competition.



Violinist Esme Arias-Kim, student of Almita Vamos is proud to share another From the Top Performance! Esme performed in a virtual concert for From the Top on Oct 21 hosted by Peter Duggan. She played works by Saint Saens, Gershwin/Heifetz and Ysaye. Here are the links for the concert that can be viewed on YouTube or Facebook.  

Violinist Esme Arias-Kim, student of Almita Vamos, is featured on a recent episode of radio show From the Top. She is interviewed by Orli Shaham and plays Estrellita with pianist Milana Pavchinskaya. Her portion can be heard at https://tinyurl.com/y3y623m3.  In addition, Esme also played for a virtual masterclass with Nathan Cole, associate concertmaster with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. The masterclass was hosted by Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative, which Esme is a scholarship recipient.


Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series 

Violinist Isabella Brown, student of Almita and Roland Vamos, performed Wednesday, October 7, livestreaming on FB and WFMT from the Chicago Cultural Center.




Chopin Foundation Piano Scholarship

Pianist Kimiko Darcy, student of Matthew Hagle and James Giles, is the recipient of the Chopin Foundation Piano Scholarship. The purpose of the Chopin Foundation Scholarship Program is to support and encourage young, talented American pianists through up to four years of preparation for the National Chopin Piano Competition of the United States, which is held in Miami, Florida, every five years.




Special Master Class with Midori April 17, 2021 Academy students perform