We are pleased to have the following Finalists in the 2019 Piano Concerto Competition!

ZAYAN AKMAL

16 years old

Scriabin: Piano Concerto, Op. 20 (third movement)

Teacher: Linda Barker

Zayan Akmal is a sixteen-year-old pianist who attends Sunset High School. He began playing the piano at age six, and has been studying with his current piano teacher, Linda Barker, for the past six years. He has participated and received recognition in a variety of OMTA events, including the Romantic Festival and the Jean Williams Scholarship Competition. In addition, he enjoys composing and writing music for the piano, drawing inspiration from the works and of Chopin and Rachmaninoff. Outside of music, he participates in the Mock Trial program at Sunset High School, and is also the past president of a Beaverton youth Toastmasters club for public speaking.


MINWOO CHO

17 years old

Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 5 (first movement)

Teacher: SungJung Kim

 

 

Minwoo Cho is a junior attending Westview High School and has started playing piano since he was 7 in South Korea. A few of his notable accomplishments include being nominated as one of the winners of the 2016 Turla Whelan Concerto Competition, finishing 2nd place in the 2017 Scholarship Competition and getting 3rd place/honorable mention in the 2017 MTNA senior piano division. He has also attended a masterclass with Gilles Vonsattel, a Swiss-born American pianist and Alexander Shtarkman. In addition, he has performed and won numerous OMTA classical and romantic competitions. Besides his studies, Minwoo enjoys playing tennis on his high school varsity team and visiting his home country, South Korea, every so often to meet with family.


TRINITY GOFF

17 years old

Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 5 (first movement)

Teacher: Jean-David Coen

Trinity Goff began piano lessons at the age of three and is currently studying under Dr. Jean-David Coen of Willamette University. Her most recent awards include second place at the Wiscarson Young Musicians’ Concerto Competition, second place at the Donna and David Eason State Scholarship Competition, and first place in the Gibbens Family Scholarship Competition. She has been a winner in many OMTA State Festivals, and in 2017 she passed with distinction the highest level of OMTA Syllabus. In 2018, she attended the John Perry Academy of Music Summer Festival. Trinity has had masterclasses and lessons from renowned teachers John Perry, Sasha Starcevich, Gregg Pauley, and Andrew Park. Besides playing the piano, Trinity enjoys playing the organ, composing, reading, and watching baseball.


JOSHUA JI

14 years old

Gershwin: Piano Concerto in F Major (first movement)

Teacher: Kelli Stephens

Joshua Ji is a freshman at Sunset High School. He began studying piano at age 4, and currently studies with Kelli Stephens. Joshua has won numerous competitions, including the 2017 MetroArts Young Artists Debut! Competition Mary Tooze Memorial Scholarship, 2014 Trula Whelan Concerto Competition, and 3rd in the 2018 OMTA Piano Scholarships Cris Tapang Memorial. Joshua attended the 2014 & 2015 Portland Summer Ensembles, as well as the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music Piano Academy last summer. He also accompanied the 2016 & 2017 Rising Stars Ballet Concerts. Besides piano, Joshua enjoys photography and good jokes.


JACOB NENOW

14 years old

Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37 (third movement)

Teacher: Renato Fabbro

Jacob Nenow has been playing piano for seven years and has studied the last two years with Dr. Renato Fabbro. He was the 2018 Oregon MTNA Junior Piano Division winner. Jacob also won first prize in the 2018 Portland Steinway & Sons Junior Piano Competition and the 2018 OMTA Suzanne Raines Junior Scholarship Award Competition. He was runner-up in the 2018 Central Oregon Symphony Association Young Artists Competition and will perform a concerto with the symphony in February 2019. Jacob also attended the 2018 Seattle Piano Institute Camp and had a master class with Dr. Robin McCabe. In 2017 he won first prize in the OFMC Suzanne Raines Young Pianists Scholarship Competition and the Spokane Junior Piano Competition in both the Classical Division and the Contemporary Division. Jacob is in 8th grade, from Portland, Oregon and loves piano, math, science, composing music and distance running. 


MICAH NG

17 years old

Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 (first movement)

Teacher: Kelli Stephens

Micah Ng is a junior at Union High School in Camas, Washington. He has studied piano for 12 years and has studied with his current teacher, Kelli Stephens, for six years. His many achievements include being the winner of the 2017 Jewish Community Orchestra Young Artist competition, OMTA Trula Whelan Concerto competition, winning second in the 2016 Cris Tapang OMTA Scholarship auditions, winning third in the 2014 Suzanne D. Raines OMTA Scholarship audition, and completing OMTA Syllabus Levels 1-10. Micah won a $2000 scholarship in the 2018 Monday Musical Club Competition and was a finalist in the 2016-2017 PYP piano concerto competition. He was also recently selected as a Metro Arts Inc. Young Artist. Micah plays the violin in the Union High School Chamber Orchestra, is an AP student, is the keyboardist in the school musical, is a manager for the high school girls’ volleyball team, is active in the Aardwolves boys’ volleyball club, and has experience as a wedding pianist. Micah is also currently a participant in Miss(ter) Union, a fundraiser for pre-mature babies.


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JESSE NIEMAN

15 years old

Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 (first movement)

Teacher: Pauline Eidemiller

Jesse Nieman is currently attending Portland Community College and studying piano with Pauline Eidemiller and Dorothy Fahlman. Jesse has participated actively in and won many OMTA festivals, as well as a scholarship from the Piano Santa Foundation. He has performed in masterclasses with Hans Boepple, Dr. Jane Magrath, Jeffrey LaDeur, Denes Varjon, Dr. Nicholas Reynolds. He is currently teaching piano to four students. Jesse is very active with his music and plays frequently for his church, retirement homes, private parties, various organizations, and accompanying other musicians. Jesse has been a member of PYP for 5 years, currently he plays violin as the assistant concertmaster in PYCO. Jesse enjoys swimming, bowling, spending time with his friends and attending youth group


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JENNA TU

16 years old

Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 (first movement)

Teacher: Renato Fabbro

Jenna Tu currently studies piano with Dr. Renato Fabbro. Her most recent honors include first prizes at the 2018 Oregon MTNA Senior Piano Competition, 2018 Marjorie Trotter Memorial Scholarship Competition, 2018 American Protégé International Concerto Competition, 2018 Steinway & Sons Competition (Senior Division), 2017 Oregon MTNA Senior Piano Competition, 2017 Cris Tapang Scholarship Competition, and many others. Jenna has performed as a first-prize winner with the Central Oregon Symphony, Coeur d’Alene Symphony and other orchestras.  She has also performed at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, the 2015 WSMTA State Conference Honors Recital, the 2014 Colburn Music Academy Piano Festival, and more. In addition, she was selected to perform in master classes for Angela Cheng, Joseph Moog, among others. Jenna is also a flutist and a current member of the Portland Youth Philharmonic.