Alumni Faces and Places

Chaconne Klaverenga and JoAnn Falletta on From the Top

Chaconne Klaverenga and JoAnn Falletta on From the Top

16-year-old guitarist Chaconne Klaverenga from Lafayette, Indiana played a guitar concerto with Buffalo Philharmonic Music Director JoAnnn Falletta on From the Top this winter. Now she is one of ten semifinalists in the Parkening Youth Guitarist Competition to be held on May 26 and 27 at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Cal. Christopher Parkening appeared on From the Top a few years ago.

Melody Lindsay will attend Princeton University in the fall. The Hawaiian harpist says she is excited to be in a place where she can “meet the leading economists, astrophysicists, bio-engineers, performers, and whatever I next become obsessed with.”

13 year-old cellist, Clark Pang, who performed on the premiere episode of “From the Top: Live from Carnegie Hall”, performed the first movement of Dvorak’s Cello Concerto for Yo Yo Ma’s Masterclass at Mondavi Center May 14 in Northern California. Ma, who was Clark’s inspiration for studying cello, was impressed by Clark’s performance and Clark took the opportunity to ask him philosophical questions about life. Clark also performs Dvorak’s Cello Concerto with the Pacific Chamber Symphony this month and a recital this summer at Napa’s Festival del Sole.

Clark’s sister 17 year-old pianist, Chloe Pang, who also performed on the premiere episode of “From the Top: Live from Carnegie Hall”, will attend Juilliard this fall and says she is “excited to begin a new chapter in her life, affecting change through music.” She will be studying with the head of Curtis’s piano department at Juilliard – “the best of both worlds,” she says.

Violinist Karen Cueva will also be attending Juilliard in the fall after she graduates from the Walnut Hill School in Natick, MA.

Eighteen year old pianist Marika Bournaki, who appeared on From the Top last May in Portland, Oregon, will perform and record Schumann’s Piano Concerto Op. 54 at the Palaces of St. Petersburg Festival June 7, 2009 with the St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra and Vladimir Lande as principal guest conductor.

Neara Russell

Neara Russell

Composer/singer/songwriter Neara Russell is rocking the local Boston music scene while attending the Berklee College of Music.

This winter Yaegy Park traveled to Moscow for the 7th International Russia Rotary Music Competition, where she was a first prize winner. Yaegy also won first prize in the American Protege International Piano and Strings Competition 2009 and performed in their recital at Carnegie Hall in April.

Stephen Kim has been selected as one of 15 violinists from a large pool of extremely talented violinists under the age of 25 for the 2009 Starling-Delay Symposium on Violin Studies this May.

Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist pianist Shiya Wang writes, “I would like to share with you some good news: I’ve been accepted at Harvard. When I received the email I burst into tears, I am very fortunate! I’m accepted to some other schools as well, but I’ll definitely attend Harvard, since they just offered me a full scholarship.”

Andrea Segar, 22, student of Donald Weilerstein at the New England Conservatory of Music, won First Prize at the Washington International Competition for Strings in Washington, DC. in March of 2009. Andrea will perform a Winner’s Concert at the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater in November. Read more.

It’s so great to hear from these alumni and we wish them well. And to the rest of our past performers, tell us what you’re up to!