Three pianists who are 2018 Tri-County Youth Festival winners play live in the WRTI performance studio and chat with Classical Host Kevin Gordon. Tri-County Concerts Association organizes one of the area's most prestigious competitions for aspiring young musicians living in Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery counties.
Nathan Jiang (age 13), won first place in New Jersey Young Pianist Concerto Competition and American Protégé international Concerto Competition, the American Fine Arts Festival Concerto Competition, the Platinum winner of the Nelly Berman Young Classical Virtuosos of Tomorrow Competition, and the prizewinner of The Old York Road Symphony Young Artist Competition. He made his solo orchestral debut with the Plainfield Symphony Orchestra in New Jersey at age 9. Nathan also enjoys playing soccer and football, skiing, snowboarding and fishing.
Nathan will play Chopin’s Ballade in F-Major Opus 38.
Thomas Hsu (age 15) began studying the piano at the age of eight, and has been studying with Dr. Igor Resnianski since last September. He took part in the Miami International Piano Festival Academy in 2017 and will be participating in the New Orleans Piano Institute this year. Thomas also studied violin and currently plays in a piano quartet at The Music School of Delaware.
Thomas will play Chopin’s Scherzo in B-Minor Opus 20, Number 1.
Nina Mennies (age 16) was born in St.Petersburg, Russia and began studying piano at the age of five. In 2008, she performed at the Rimsky-Korsakov Museum and the St. Petersburg State Capella Concert Hall. In 2011, Nina sang in the children's chorus in the Philadelphia Opera Company's production of Carmen at the Academy of Music.
In 2013, she won top prizes in the Young Artist Division of the World Piano Competition in Cincinnati, Ohio. She also performed three times at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. Nina has also won awards in the Junior and Senior Piano divisions of the Tri-County Concerts Youth Festival in 2014, 2017, and 2018.
Nina will play the Sonetto 104 del Petrarca of Franz Liszt.
The Tri-County Festival offers talented students an opportunity to audition before and receive critiques from professional judges. Those students deemed outstanding by the judges are given monetary awards; their photos and accomplishments are featured on the Tri-County web site; and they perform before a discriminating audience at the annual winners' recital.
William Kapell, Marian Anderson, Eugene Istomin, the Budapest String Quartet, Leontyne Price, the Juilliard String Quartet, Rosalyn Tureck, and Vladimir Sokoloff have all performed in Tri-County's concert series.