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A 17-year-old junior from Bayside’s Benjamin Cardozo High School is preparing for a major city piano competition and a recital at Carnegie Hall next year after placing as a semi-finalist at an international competition in South Korea last summer.
Syon Kim, whose family moved from South Korea to Bayside three years ago, ranked in the semi-finals out of 112 performers at the sixth International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians in Suwon, South Korea, in June.
The Cardozo student, currently taking classes at the Juilliard School and who hopes to attend the performing arts school for college, said she eventually wants to share her love of music by playing professionally and becoming a teacher.
“My mom loves music, which is why I wanted to start playing piano,” she said. “I want to be a pianist and a professor in college and teach students who love music. Sometimes parents force their kids to take up music, but I’d want them to do it because they enjoy it.”
Kim, who has been playing since she was 4, played pieces by Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Liszt and Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky, for whom the South Korean competition was named.
Students at the competition hailed from South Korea, Canada, Italy, Japan, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Russia, Ukraine, Taiwan, China, Belarus, France, Hong Kong and the United States.
Along with her studies at Cardozo, Kim is also taking training, theory, studio and master and chamber music classes at Juilliard.
In February, she will play a recital at Carnegie Hall and in June she will play pieces by Bach and Beethoven as well as Liszt’s “Hungarian Rhapsody” during the New York International Piano Competition.
Her past performances include playing at the Seoul Music Festival in the summer of 2007 as well as several solo and chamber concerts at Juilliard’s Paul Hall and Peter Jay Sharp Theater.
Bernard Rose, orchestra director and music teacher at Cardozo, said Kim stands out among music students.
“Syon has helped me rewrite parts that were missing from the orchestra,” he said. “She’s becoming a well-rounded musician. She can sight-see, transpose parts and play keyboard to fill in for a bassoon. When I was her age, I couldn’t do that. She can hear the music in her head and that’s what makes her good.”
Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.
©2009 Community Newspaper Group
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