2014 Young Artist Competition Winner
The New England Philharmonic has named 14-year-old violinist Austin Kwoun from Belmont, Massachusetts, winner of their 20th Annual Young Artist Competition. Kwoun performed the Cadenza and Burlesque of Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Opus 77 with the NEP, under the direction of Richard Pittman, at their annual family concert “All Aboard” on December 14th. The concert also featured the Boston premiere of Michael Gandolfi’s Night Train to Perugia; Rob Kapilow Chris van Allsburg’s Polar Express, featuring David Kravitz, baritone and Newton Public Schools’ All City Treble Singers; Arthur Honegger’s Pacific 231 and Heitor Villa-Lobos’ Little Train of Caipira & Toccata from Bachianas Brasileiras No. 2.
Austin Kwoun began his musical studies on the violin at the age of eight under the tutelage of Ms. Jin Kyung Joen at the New England Conservatory (NEC) Preparatory School in Boston. Kwoun, now fourteen, is a member of the NEC’s Youth Philharmonic Orchestra, a core member of the Boston Youth Music Charity Group, and performs in various local venues to raise money for UNICEF and Cradles to Crayons. As a young musician, Austin has garnered numerous awards and accolades, including: the 2013 Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra’s Director’s Choice Award at the Jeanne Selander Concerto Competition, first place at the 2013 Ellen Huff Powers Young Artist Competition, and first place at the 2013 Roman Totenberg Young Musician String Competition. Earlier this year he placed second at the American Protégé International Romantic Music Competition and performed at Carnegie Hall. He also attended the Foulger International Music Festival, where he was chosen to participate in a master class with Joseph Lin of the Julliard String Quartet and to perform at Lincoln Center in New York City.
Austin is currently a ninth grader at the Belmont Hill School. He is a passionate baseball player and fan, and follows every move of the Boston Red Sox. He is also an avid reader and writer, and enjoys squash and golf in his free time.
The competition runners-up were:
Cellist Mari Nagahari, 16, of Andover, who performed Dvorak’s Cello Concerto in b minor, Op. 104, B 191
Violinist Henri Bouchard, 16, of Ayer, who performed Vieuxtemps’ Violin Concerto No. 5 in A minor, Op. 37