Concerto Concert is Coming!

Five talented pre-college students will have the opportunity to perform with the Santa Monica College Symphony Orchestra this Sunday, May 8 when the orchestra presents its annual Spring Concert.

The music students are the talented winners of a local competition sponsored by the Music Teachers' Association of California - West Los Angeles branch. The Concerto Competition for Non-Pianists gives string, brass, percussion and voice students of MTAC members the opportunity to perform movements of standard concertos and arias with the SMC Symphony Orchestra.

This year's competition winners are David Manukyan, Henry Samuels, Isaiah Yu and Judith Yu.

Samuels, 17, plays the double bass and attends Santa Monica High School. He will perform a movement from Koussevitsky's Concerto for Double Bass. First chair in the National High School Festival Orchestra, Samuels plans to attend Tanglewood Music Festival this summer.

Manukyan, 15, will perform a movement from Mozart's Violin Concerto in G Major. Judith Yu, 13, will perform a movement from Saint-Saens' Violin Concerto No. 3, Opus 61, and her brother Isaiah Yu, 17, will perform a movement from Brahms' Violin Concerto in D Major. Judith Yu said she has been playing violin for 10 years. "I started playing because both of my parents are violinists," she said.

According to SMC Music department chair Professor James E. Smith, Sunday's performance will mark the third year the college has sponsored the competition in conjunction with the MTAC to give younger West Los Angeles students the chance to perform with the symphony. Smith is also the conductor of the orchestra, however for this spring's concert SMC student Fang-Ning Lim will be the guest conductor.

Fang-Ning is a student in SMC's Applied Music Program, a special course of study for music majors at SMC that helps prepare them to be competitive at four-year universities and music conservatories. She will conduct the orchestra in the Egmont Overture by Ludwig van Beethoven.

"I love music, " Fang-Ning said. "Conducting gives you a whole different experience because it's all instruments - all the players together, with me, but in the music." She thanked Smith for offering her the chance to conduct and Prof. James Martin for guiding her in her conducting. Fang-Ning has taken the conducting course the music department offers, but is enrolled in the Applied program with a discipline in piano. Joan Mills is her private piano teacher.

Every fourth semester members of the orchestra are chosen to perform concerto movements and original compositions.

For further information on the Applied Music Program, read the story about their upcoming benefit concert in this issue of the Corsair.

The SMC Symphony Orchestra's spring concert will be held at the SMC Concert Hall at 4 p.m., Sunday, May 8. Tickets are $10.