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Pre-College Students Perform with National Youth Orchestra, Opus 3 Artists

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The students performed in a concert at Stanford University with Conductor Sir Andrew Davis and featured violinist Gil Shaham, who are both Opus 3 artists.

July 27, 2023 by Alex Heigl

Three students in the Conservatory's Pre-College division—Sarah Son, 16, (violin), Huisun Hong, 16, (cello), and Nolan Smith, 17, (bassoon)—were part of the National Youth Orchestra's (NYO) performance at Stanford on July 26, for a program that included some luminaries from SFCM's alliance that began in 2020. 

Gil Shaham and Sir Andrew Davis

Gil Shaham and Sir Andrew Davis

Under the direction of Sir Andrew Davis, the NYO performed the world premiere of Valerie Coleman's Giants of Light, commissioned by Carnegie Hall to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the NYO; Samuel Barber's Violin Concerto, Op. 14 (Gil Shaham as the featured soloist); and Hector Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique, Op. 14. (The National Youth Orchestra itself is in its 9th year of being represented by Askonas Holt, also a part of the SFCM alliance.)

Sarah Son

Sarah Son

"From daily sectionals with world-class musicians to full orchestra rehearsals led by Sir Andrew Davis, this experience has been life-changing," Huisun says. "I have made lifelong friends and memories that I will treasure forever. I would like to give thanks to my teacher, Mr. Eric Sung, for all of the knowledge and support he has provided me to be able to participate in this wonderful program."

“I have been very fortunate to attend SFCM for several years now," Sarah added. "I would like to express my gratitude to my teacher, Elbert Tsai, for guiding and trusting in me. Additionally, I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to Justin Sun, Laura Reynolds, Keelin Davis, and Kyle Tingzon for their tireless work behind the scenes, making each Saturday at pre-college memorable for us."

Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute convenes the National Youth Orchestra of the United States after a thorough audition process and weeks of on-site training at Purchase College. This summer, the NYO's tour took them to Massachusetts, Carnegie Hall, Montréal's Festival, Nashville, Dallas, the Grand Teton Music Festival in Jackson Hole, and San Diego.

Learn more about SFCM's Pre-College division.