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2018 Young Artists Debut Application - Available now!

The 2017 Winners Were..

The 23rd Young Artists Debut! Van Buren Competition & Concerto Concert winners made their debut on Tuesday, May 9th, at 7:30 PM at Lincoln Hall at Portland State University.

The nine artists, ages 12-19, were selected from 34 semi-finalists at auditions held on January 7th at PSU. Winners performed with Niel DePonte, Executive Artistic Director for MetroArts Inc. and an orchestra drawn from the ranks of the Oregon Symphony and Oregon Ballet Theatre's orchestras. The concert was broadcast on All Classical Portland 89.9 FM. and streamed worldwide.

John Fawcett, Age 16, Violin, Bend.  KORNGOLD, mvt 1.


Aaron Greene, Age 15, Violin, Camas, WA. Wieniawski mvt. 1


Joshua Ji, Age 12, Piano, Portland. Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, mvt 3

Fumika Mizuno, Age 18, Violin, Portland. RAVEL, TZIGANE

Tara Palazuelos, Age 17, Mezzo Soprano, Forest Grove. Duet

Aishani Saha, Age 16, Soprano, Portland. Duet, TBA

Natalie Tan, Age 15, Piano, Portland. Chopin Piano Concerto No. 2, mvt 3

Rebecca Yakos, Age 19, Soprano, Forest Grove. Selection to be announced

Jenny Yu, Age 15, Piano, West Linn. Bach, Piano Concerto in D minor, mvt 1

Each young artist will perform their concerto at the May 9th concert, and particpate in four months of individualized coaching sessions with DePonte. At these sessions, winners not only discussed the interpretation of their concertos, but also how to solo with an orchestra, ways to approach repertoire, and what it takes to be a professional musician.

"These are incredibly talented young people. My goal is to challenge them to move towards even higher levels of performance and interpretive depth over three months," said DePonte. "Working with these kids is the most rewarding work I do every year."


Past Young Artists Debut! Winners

Some noteworthy former Young Artists Debut! Competition & Concerto Concert winners include former Miss America and vocalist Katie Harman, Principal Bassoon of the Chicago Symphony Keith Bunke, 2009, pianist and winner of Germany's prestigious ARD Competition Ben Kim, 2001, and violinist, and currently concertmaster at La Scala Opera House in Milan, Italy, Laura Marzadori, 2005.

Are you (or do you know) a classical musician age 10 to 21?

MetroArts Inc. is holding the 24th Annual Young Artists Debut! Van Buren Competition & Concerto Concert to promote the performance of classical music by young people in our region.

Through November 30, 2017, we are asking young classical instrumentalists and vocalists to enter our contest. All entrants will be notified if they will progress to the live audition round by December 14, 2017. Winners will be coached January - May by MetroArts Inc.’s Executive Artistic Director, Niel DePonte, who is also the Conductor for the Oregon Ballet Theatre.   Following intensive coaching, winners will perform at a gala concert at the Lincoln Performance Hall at Portland State University.

Application Process - after 8/30/2017:
–Email lyndsey@metroartsinc.org to notify of your intent to apply.
–Access, complete, sign, and submit the fillable application.
–Make a quality ten-minute AUDIO ONLY recording of a solo classical performance (or solo plus piano accompaniment) with no breaks or edits. Pianists: please do NOT use an accompanying piano reduction of the orchestra parts on this recording.
–Upload application recording to YouTube and email link in body of an email to Lyndsey@metroartsinc.org.
–Pay the $50 application fee.

Selection Process:
Applications are collected by MetroArt Inc.'s Administrative Staff who are not involved in the selection process. Applications are then anonymized to be presented for judging. The selection committee does not know age, gender, or teacher of applicants and bases selection for the live audition round purely on an artist's skill.

For those selected for the live audition round, artists are required to record his or her audition. Be prepared to bring a small recorder or video camera.  This is mandatory.  Why?  This is an educational competition.  Please bring the recording to your teacher(s) after the competition over for review. 

Click here for answers to Frequently Asked Questions. If you are still have questions, please contact Lyndsey Bates, Administrative Assitant, at Lyndsey@metroartsinc.org or call (503) 245-4885.

Our sincerest gratitude to:
The Brookby Foundation
John Van Buren

If you would like to support this effort, please donate to MetroArts Inc. today by clicking here.