Young pianists to perform with orchestra

DeKALB — Two young pianists won the 2014 Arthur D. Montzka Young Artists Concerto Competition and will perform with the Kishwaukee Symphony Orchestra in its Feb. 22 concert.

Colin Choi, 12, will play the first movement from Piano Concerto in A Minor by Edvard Grieg.

Sean Choi, 13, will play the first movement of Piano Concerto No. 3 by Sergei Prokofiev.

Colin is a seventh grader at Wood Oaks Junior High School in Northbrook. He began his piano studies at age 5 and is a student of Sueanne Metz. Colin has won awards in numerous competitions, including first place in the North Shore Music Teachers’ Association Competition, the Illinois Music Association Contest, the Chinese Fine Arts Society Competition, and the Sejong Music Competition. He was also a prizewinner at the Illinois State Music Teachers Association Competition, the Chicago Area Music Teachers Association (CAMTA) Sonata Festivals, the Grandquist Music Competition in the Olympic Division, and the New Music National Young Artist Competition.

In 2009, he was chosen to perform at the Kennedy Center for the International Youth Praise Festival. In 2010, he performed at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall as a winner of the International Chopin Celebration Competition. Colin was also the winner of the 2011 DePaul Concerto Festival for Young Performers and performed as a soloist with the Oistrach Symphony Orchestra. His performance was broadcast on Chicago’s WFMT 98.7 classical radio station. Colin was also awarded first place in the Emilio del Rosario Concerto Competition and performed with the Harper Symphony Orchestra.

In August 2013, he won third place and the best performance for contemporary music award at the Los Angeles Young Musician International Competition. Most recently, Colin was chosen as the winner of the piano category in the open division at the Walgreens National Concerto Competition. He has also made frequent public appearances, including performances at the Chicago Cultural Center, the Parisian Salon Concert Series at the Northbrook Library, and the Grand Piano Haus. Colin also enjoys playing the acoustic drums, basketball, and video games, and keeping his marine aquarium.

Sean Choi is an eighth grader at Wilmette Junior High School in Wilmette. He also studies piano with Sueanne Metz. Sean has won competitions including Honorable Mention at the Music Teachers National Association, first place at the Confucius Music Festival, Honorable Mention at the Emilio Del Rosario Concerto Competition, and first place at the DePaul Concerto Competition. He has played with the Oistrach Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Area Music Teachers Association Roberta Savler Contest, and placed third at the North Shore Music Teachers’ Association and first at the Sejong Music Competition. He also won awards at the Grandquist Music Competition. Besides piano, he has won first prize (2010 and 2008), second prize (2009) and Honorable Mention (2011) for cello at the Confucius Music Festival, and placed second twice at the Society of American Musicians competition. Other than music, Sean enjoys swimming, and he is on the NASA Wildcat Aquatics swim team.

The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Boutell Memorial Concert Hall at Northern Illinois University. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and students and $5 for children under 12.

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