YOUTH CONCERTO COMPETITION 2022 WINNERS
Ritchie Bui is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in piano performance at East Carolina University, where he studies with Kwan Yi. Previously, he studied with Alisa Bohon. He has attended Brevard Music Center for two summers and received a scholarship to attend the 2022 Leon Fleisher Academy. He has won prizes at the Williamsburg Music Club’s Grants-in-Aid program, Lions Club of Virginia’s Bland Music Competition, and the Mary Smart Competition.
Ritchie was named the Grand Prize winner at the 2021 Hampton Roads Philharmonic Young Artist Competition, where he performed with the orchestra at the American Theatre in Hampton, Virginia. He has also performed at the A.J. Fletcher Music Center in Greenville, Ferguson Center for the Arts in Newport News, and Ewell Hall in Williamsburg.
Co-Winner: Matthew Svec, clarinet
Matthew Svec is a clarinetist and Kenan Music Scholar at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, where he studies with Donald Oehler. He has performed as a soloist with several groups in his hometown, including the Roanoke Youth Symphony, the Roanoke Valley Community Band, and the Blue Ridge Music Festival. In the summers, he has participated in l’Orchestre de la francophonie, the National Intercollegiate Band, and Eastern Music Festival. He has additionally appeared in masterclasses with Ricardo Morales, Diana Haskell, Christopher Millard, and others.
In 2021, Matthew led the project Intimate Distance, a grant-supported chamber music collaboration to commission and premiere new and pandemic-relevant chamber works for clarinet, mezzo-soprano, and string quartet. He recently won a grant for an all-Latinx composer recital in fall 2022 and is excited to be preparing and sharing this underappreciated repertoire.
Matthew has played piano since the age of six and occasionally accompanies student performances at UNC. He is also a continuo player in the UNC Baroque Ensemble, and most recently gave a historically-informed performance of Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea with the UNC Opera. Beyond music, Matthew has a love for language and cultural exchanges. He has studied abroad in Munich, Germany and Quito, Ecuador. He speaks English, Spanish, French, German, and Quechua.
First Prize: Tristen Johnson, cello
Unlike many others, Tristen Johnson did not begin his cello studies at a very young age. It wasn’t until age 12 that he fell in love with playing the instrument. After a year and a half of playing the cello, Tristen performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City with the Junior Honors Performance Series orchestra. He performed the following year at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, London.
Tristen has taken part in the Sphinx Performance Academy at the Cleveland Institute of Music and gained experience at Curtis Institute of Music and Vivace Music Festival. A member of the National Youth Orchestra-USA 2021, he was selected to participate in NYO-USA’s 2022 European tour. He has also been featured by The News & Observer, Miami Herald, HIS Radio, ABC11, and WRAL. Tristen is currently a student of Nathaniel Yaffe, cellist and recording engineer with the North Carolina Symphony. Tristen has also received private instruction from Camden Shaw, cellist of the Dover Quartet, and Peter Wiley of the Curtis Institute of Music.
He performs on an instrument made in 2022 by Kelvin Scott. As a zealous chamber musician, Tristen is a part of the Tré Voce Piano Trio within the North Carolina Chamber Music Institute. Together they’ve ranked high in National Competitions, leading to performances at Carnegie Hall and in Canada.
Second Prize: Amelia Posner-Hess, violin
Amelia Posner-Hess currently studies the violin with Fabian Lopez and will be attending the Eastman School of Music this fall, where she will study with Renée Jolles. Born and raised in Chapel Hill, she made her solo orchestral debut in April of 2022 at Duke University’s Baldwin Auditorium as the winner of the Duke String School Concerto Competition.
At 14, she began playing first violin in the University of North Carolina Symphony Orchestra, the youngest member of the ensemble. Amelia is also the first violinist of the Altium Quartet, which won first prize in the Charleston International Music Competition and the Bellagrande International Music Competition. In addition, Amelia has been a finalist for NPR’s From the Top and the Glory International Music Competition.
Amelia has participated in programs such as the Curtis Institute’s Curtis Mentor Network, the Mallarmé Youth Chamber Orchestra, Duke University String School, the Luby Violin Symposium, Eastern Music Festival, Vivace Matera Music Festival, Curtis Summerfest, the Online Solo Strings Intensive, and the Meadowmount School of Music. This summer, Amelia will attend the Heifetz International Music Institute.