2015 Young Artist Competition Winner
The New England Philharmonic (NEP) has named 15 year-old pianist Amir Siraj from Brookline, Massachusetts winner of their 21st Annual Young Artist Competition. Siraj performed Franz Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the NEP under the direction of Richard Pittman, at their annual family concert Musical Characters on December 13 at 3 p.m. at the Tsai Performance Center. The concert also featured Rob Kapilow’s Elijah’s Angel featuring David Kravitz and Dana Whiteside, baritones and the Boston City Singers as well as John Harbison’s Remembering Gatsby, and George Atheil’s Tom Sawyer Overture.
Amir Siraj began piano lessons at the age of four. Hailed by TheaterJones as a “gentle” yet “passionate” interpreter, he has performed at venues including Carnegie Hall and Symphony Hall.
A top prize winner at local, national, and international competitions, he has been invited to perform by organizations including The Cliburn, the American Liszt Society, the Harvard Musical Association, and the Bowdoin International Music Festival. He has performed many world premieres including chamber works by Stephen Feigenbaum and solo works by Larry Bell, in addition to US premieres of Lera Auerbach. He has studied under the likes of Peter Serkin, Douglas Humphreys, Hung-Kuan Chen, and Bruce Brubaker. Amir is a student of Helena Vesterman, and also attends the New England Conservatory Preparatory School. He is currently a junior at Brookline High School. Other activities Amir devotes time to include rowing, choir, his mobile payments startup, and his high school’s Innovation Club, which he founded.
The competition runners-up were:
Cellist Wangshu Xiang 16, of Natick
Violinist Joe MacDonald, 12, of Watertown
Annual Family Concert
Date: December 13, 2015
Time: 3 p.m.
Venue: Tsai Performance Center
John Harbison Remembering Gatsby
George Antheil Tom Sawyer Overture
Franz Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1
performed by NEP’s Young Artist Competition Winner, Amir Siraj
Rob Kapilow Elijah’s Angel
David Kravitz, baritone
Dana Whiteside, baritone
Boston City Singers, Jane Money, Director