KALAMAZOO, MI – Yaegy Park, a 17-year old violinist, was awarded the Gold Medal at the 40th Annual Stulberg International String Competition. Yaegy is no stranger to top awards having won her first competition at age 4 as a Houston Young Artist. At age 9 she performed with Christopher O’Riley on NPR’s “From the Top” where she was selected for the Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award. She has followed with many top international prizes including being named a Young Arts Winner 2015. Yaegy is a passionate chamber musician and winning several competitions. She is a member of the Foundation for the Revival of Classical Culture. Currently she attends Juilliard Precollege studying with Catherine Cho.
Twelve young string players under the age of 20 were juried from a field of 140 applicants and invited to compete for almost $25,000 in prizes. Judges for the Competition were Sarah Chang, one of the foremost violinists of our time and recording star; Heidi Castleman, a renowned professor of viola at the Juilliard School of Music and a founding trustee of Chamber Music America; Eric Kim, a professor of cello at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, a former Stulberg medalists and regularly heard at festivals throughout the country.
Silver Medalist was cellist Oliver Herbert, 17, from San Francisco. For his finals performance, he played the second and third movements of the Schumann Concerto in A minor. In summer 2014, Oliver was Principal Cellist with the National Youth Orchestra and he has served as Principal Cellist for the San Francisco Youth Symphony and the Colburn Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra. He attends the Colburn School where he studies with Clive Greensmith.
Violist Hae Sue Lee, 15, was awarded the Bronze Medal. In her finals performance she chose the second movement of the Walton Concerto for the viola. In 2010 Hae Sue relocated to Seoul, South Korea to continue her studies with SoonWha Oh at the Korea National University of the Arts. She has performed throughout Asia. Currently, she is a student of Roberto Diaz and HsinYun Huang at the Curtis Institute of Music.
Albert Seo from British Columbia, a 16-year-old cellist won the Bach Award for his performance of Suite No. 3 in C Major. He is a student at the Vancouver Academy of Music. The prize is co-sponsored by the Kalamazoo Bach Festival.
As the Gold Medalist, Yaegy Park will perform next season with the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra in their subscription series. Oliver Herbert will return in the fall to perform with Western Michigan University Symphony Orchestra. Hae Sue Lee can be heard again in her performance with the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra.
The Stulberg International String Competition, which was named after the late Western Michigan University violin professor and Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra conductor, celebrated its 40th anniversary this year. Its history includes a renowned list of medal winners as well as judges and is ranked among the best competitions in the world. The Stulberg continues its envisioned mission: to promote excellence in string instrument performance by gifted young artists under the age of twenty.
Contact: Nan Harrison