Symphony Australia and ABC name the 12 Finalists in the prestigious Australia Young Performers Awards.

The best of Australia’s classical young musicians will compete for the coveted title of ABC Symphony Australia Young Performer of the Year in Hobart next month. The competition, credited for launching many international careers, has been running for over 70 years but this year’s prizes are much more lucrative than in the past.

This year’s winner will receive $25,000 and the two Concerto finalists $10,000 each. There are a series of other prizes on offer too: the People’s Choice, Best Chamber Music Performance, Best Recital, Best Performance of an Australian work and also the Triffitt Prize, a new prize bequest by Dr Gregory Byron Triffitt. All come with $6,000 prize money attached.

But this competition is about far more than the money, according to Kate Lidbetter, CEO of Symphony Australia. “We have seen many talented Australian performers catapulted onto the world stage after winning this Award. It’s really exciting to see the long term benefits both to the individual musicians and Australian culture of these Awards.”

The three competitors who reach the Grand Final will perform their nominated Concerto with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra in Hobart’s Federation Concert Hall, under the baton of Johannes Fritzsch. And the eventual winner will receive performance opportunities with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, the ABC Sir Charles Moses Young Performer’s Trophy, multiple copies of a professionally recorded and produced CD, media training and photo shoot and a feature interview in Limelight. It is an extraordinary career boost for any young musician.

Also, during the Awards, audiences will be treated to performances from musicians who will perform in a ‘festival-type’ format of seven concerts across ten days in three rounds – solo recital, chamber and concerto rounds. It’s a new format that was launched three years ago and is proving to be a great element of the competition. “What we’re seeing in our young musicians is outstanding performance in these three areas – high technical proficiency, an understanding of the repertoire and an appreciation of musical style,” said Lidbetter. “It’s so inspiring to experience this level of talent and proficiency in Australia’s young musicians.”

Award alumni read like a ‘who’s who’ of Australian musicians, including Roger Woodward, Simon Tedeschi, Diana Doherty and Nathan Waks. All have gone on to create successful careers for themselves, in Australia and on the international stage, helped by the prestige of the Awards’s title as well as the financial assistance. Long may it continue.

YPA 2015 Finalists
Aaron Liu (Piano – QLD)
Chris Cartlidge (Viola – VIC)
Doretta Balkizas (Violin – VIC)
Ennes Mehmedbasic (Oboe – NSW)
Kiran Phatak (Flute – WA)
Lily Higson-Spence (Violin – QLD)
Lloyd Van’t Hoff (Clarinet – QLD)
Mee Na Lojewski (Cello – VIC)
Peter de Jager (Piano – VIC)
Sonja Schebeck (Violin – NSW)
Vatche Jambazian (Piano – NSW)
Zoe Freisberg (Violin – VIC)

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