Yamaha Young Performing Artists Competition

INDIANAPOLIS (February 12, 2019) – Eleven exceptional musicians have been named the winners of the 2019 Yamaha Young Performing Artists (YYPA) Competition presented by the Band & Orchestral division of Yamaha Corporation of America. Trumpeter Cade Gotthardt from Long Beach, California was among the winners.

The YYPA Competition recognizes outstanding young musicians studying in the United States who excel in jazz, classical and contemporary genres. In addition to this year’s 11 winners, six individuals were awarded honorable mentions.

Each applicant submitted an audio/video audition and support materials, which were evaluated by an expert panel of Yamaha Performing Artists and national celebrity musicians. Winners of the competition demonstrated superior technical skill and artistry on brass, winds, strings, percussion instruments and piano.  

The 2019 YYPA Winners include:

Alejandro Lombo – flute; Miramar, Florida; Curtis Institute of Music

Freya Spence – clarinet; London, England; Manhattan School of Music

Bhavani Kotha – oboe; Bellevue, Washington; DePaul University

Eric Zheng – saxophone; Tucson, Arizona; Northwestern University

Cade Gotthardt ­– trumpet; Long Beach, California; California State University, Long Beach

Dave Mosko – trombone; Marlton, New Jersey; Rutgers University

Connor Rowe – trombone; Lompoc, California; The Colburn School

Samuel Vargas – violin; Acarigua-Araure, Venezuela; Columbus State University

Austin Keck ­– percussion; Prosper, Texas; University of Rochester

Xinzhu Ma – piano; Shenyang, China; University of Michigan

Will Kjeer – piano; Saint Paul, Minnesota; California Institute of the Arts

The 2019 YYPA winners join over 300 exceptional musicians who have been recognized by the program over the past 31 years. Many have established successful music careers, both as performers and educators, including Conrad Jones, principal trumpet of the Indianapolis Symphony; Leelanee Sterrett, French horn with the New York Philharmonic; Stephen Page, Yamaha performing artist and faculty at the University of Texas at Austin; Aaron Parks, acclaimed jazz pianist; and Kyle Price, artistic director and founder of the Caroga Lake Music Festival and Caroga Arts Collective.

The 2019 Yamaha Young Performing Artists will receive an all-expense-paid trip to the YYPA Celebration Weekend June 22-25, 2019, which will take place during the Music for All™ Summer Symposium, to be held at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, from June 22-29, 2019.

This once-in-a-lifetime opportunity will allow the young artists to perform in front of thousands, receive national press coverage and participate in workshops designed to launch a professional music career. The 2019 winners will walk away from this experience with services and support from Yamaha Artist Relations and professional audio and video recordings, as well as photography, of their live performance.

The YYPA Celebration Weekend will culminate at the annual YYPA Concert, which will be held on Monday, June 24 at Emens Auditorium. Yamaha Performing Artist Anders Astrand, a renowned international jazz artist, will perform as the Featured Guest Artist with the winners. In previous years, featured guest artists have included Allen Vizzutti, international trumpet soloist and educator; Jauvon Gilliam, principal timpanist of the National Symphony Orchestra; and three-time Grammy® Award winner Jeff Coffin, saxophonist for the Dave Matthews Band.

For more information about the Yamaha Young Performing Artists Program, email [email protected] or visit https://yamaha.io/YYPA

(Source: Stephanie Talarico)

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