When the Hopkins Symphony
Orchestra takes the stage this weekend, the headliners
will be a
graduate student in the Whiting School's
Department of Civil
Engineering and a sophomore
and economics major
in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.
The two accomplished musicians are pianist Mengyu Lan
and cellist Philip Wolf, and their
performances are the prize they won in the 2009 Johns
Hopkins Concerto Competition.
Lan will play the first movement of Chopin's Piano
Concerto No. 1, Opus 11, and Wolf will play
Saint-Saens' Cello Concerto No. 1, Opus 33, both under the
baton of Vladimir Lande, conductor of the
Hopkins Symphony Chamber Orchestra.
The concert begins at 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 4, in
the SDS Room of the Mattin Center, on
the Homewood campus. Also on the evening's program is
Schubert's String Quintet in C, Allegro ma non
troppo, and works for bassoon ensemble.
The winners were chosen from a field of nine
contestants, based on an application and audition.
The judges were Jed Gaylin, Hopkins Symphony Orchestra
music director; Lande; and Miryam
Yardumian, former director of Artists and Special Projects
for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
Lan, who comes from Chongqing, China, began studying
piano at age 5 with professors from the
Sichuan Conservatory of Music and later studied with such
world-renowned professors as Zhaoyi Dan
and Daxin Zheng. In 1992, he became the youngest pianist
ever to achieve the second-highest national
level of piano performance in China. In 2000, he was
awarded first prize in a provincewide piano
competition and was declared the national winner at
Tsinghua University Art Camp. He has given solo
recitals at Zhongshan Park Hall, Beijing Jinfan Hall and
Tsinghua University. At Johns Hopkins, he has
performed with the Hopkins Symphony Chamber Orchestra. He
studies at the
Peabody Conservatory with Corey McVicar.
Wolf grew up in Belmont, Mass., where he graduated
from Belmont High School. He began
playing cello in first grade. His early teachers were
Barbara Pashke and, at the New England
Conservatory Preparatory School, Laura Blustein. During
seven years playing in the Boston Youth
Symphony, he was one of 10 student musicians chosen to take
part in a cultural exchange in Laikipia,
Kenya. A documentary film made about this project won an
honorable mention at the Santa Barbara
International Film Festival. During summer 2007, he
participated in the Boston University Tanglewood
Institute. He now plays in the Hopkins Symphony Orchestra;
has taught cello to children in the music
program at Margaret Brent Elementary School, located near
the Homewood campus; and has organized
and played in chamber music ensembles in collaboration with
Michael Kannen, director of chamber
music at the Peabody Conservatory. He studies at Peabody
with Daniel Levitov.
Chairing the 2009 competition was junior Larissa
Woskob, from State College, Pa. She is a
biology major and a bioethics minor in the Krieger
School, a member of the Woodrow
Wilson Debate Council and president of the Bioethics
Society. Since her freshman year, she has been
a pianist with the Hopkins Symphony and Chamber orchestras.
She studies at the Peabody
Conservatory with Corey McVicar.
The Johns Hopkins Concerto Competition was created by
2008 alumnus Hernan del Aguila, who
wanted to give students on the Homewood campus a chance "to
further their musical studies, gain
experience in auditioning for professional musicians and
receive public recognition for their work." The
competition is open to undergraduate and graduate students
who are not pursuing degrees in music.
Tickets for the April 4 concert are free for Johns
Hopkins students; $6 for other students,
seniors (age 60+) and Johns Hopkins staff, faculty and
alumni; and $8 general admission.
For more information about the competition winners,
the April 4 performance and all HSO
programs, go to
www.jhu.edu/jhso, call 410-516-6542 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.