Piano Notes – Studio Newsletter April 2015


March was an extremely busy month for our studio. 26 students participated in the California Certificate of Merit exam. I am proud to announce that everyone passed! Special congratulations to the following students that received Branch Honors:

Branch Honors (level 3 and above):
Level 3: Katherine Shepherd (5+)
Level 4: Shania Jin (5+), Emma Erickson (5+), Kaitlyn Hetsko (5), Charys Hong (5-), Chanelle Tan (4+)
Level 5: Hudson Erickson (5+), Alexa Willis (5), Fiona Harley (5), Charmaine Tan (5-), Cheryl Tan (5-)
Level 6: Hunter Erickson (5+)
Level 8: Kelly Rausch (5)
Level 9: Meijke Balay-Mickelson (5+)

I would also like to congratulate those that received “Excellent” rating for all three performance evaluation categories (Technique, Repertoire, Sight Reading):

Prep Level: Noelle Hong, Cameron Chang
Level 1: Claire Nguyen, Ethan Phan, Yudhister Kumar, Elsa Long, Cole Willis, David Huang
Level 3: Katherine Shepherd
Level 4: Emma Erickson
Level 5: Alexa Willis, Hudson Erickson
Level 6: Hunter Erickson
Level 9: Meijke Balay-Mickelson

This year we have three Theory 100% Trophy winners. This is so hard to get!

Level 1: Yudhister Kumar, Ethan Phan
Level 4: Chanelle Tan

Theory 99% (so close!):
Prep Level: Noelle Hong, Cameron Chang
Level 4: Shania Jin

Theory above 90%: Charmaine Tan, Kelly Rausch, Claire Nguyen, Abigail Phan, Elsa Long, Chloe Tan, Cheryl Tan, Kaitlyn Hetsko, Cole Willis, Hudson Erickson, Emma Erickson, Charys Hong, Rachel Hong, Meijke Balay-Mickelson, David Huang.

Masterclass and Recital appearances

Students from our studio are frequently invited to participate in master classes and recitals. The following students appeared in these events:

March 15 – Catherine Howard (senior) performed in two master classes and a recital at the Steinway Festvial. Catherine performed Bach Prelude in D minor from WTC Book II, Mozart Rondo in D Major K. 485, and Ravel Sonatine.

March 28 – Meijke Balay-Mickelson (10th grade) performed in a master class conducted by SAKIKO OHASHI, judge of the 2015 Virginia Waring International Piano Competition. Meijke performed  Bach Prelude and Fugue in C minor from WTC Book I at Indian Wells Theater on the Palm Desert campus of CSU San Bernardino.

March 28 – Ron Lycan (10 years old) performed at the Inland Valley Symphony Library Recital Series at the Grace Mellman Library. Ron performed Bach 2-part Invention No. 1 in C Major and first movement of Mozart Sonata in B flat, K.570.

April Concerts

imageI will be performing in a benefit concert on April 12. This concert will be held at a beautiful private residence, and proceeds will go to the Temecula Conservatory of the Arts and MTAC Scholarship Fund. Tickets are $25. Refreshmemts served.

Our student Emma Erickson will be performing her Mozart Concerto movement with Inland Valley Symphony on April 18.

imagePlease come and support these concerts! Remember, this counts as one of your MTNA Achievemeant Award goals, which must be completed by end of June, so if you are short of goals to complete, every time you attend a live concert, it counts as a musical activity! Attending live concerts enriches your musical experience and understanding, and you can learn so much from watching other students and musicians perform! Regular attendance at live concerts is an important part of music education!

If you need help getting tickets, let me know!


Upcoming Student Opportunities

April 18 – the following students will participate in the Temacula Spring Music Festival: Kristen Law, Shania Jin, Jessica Kim, Ron Lycan, Meijke Balay-Mickelson, Fioan Harley.

May 16 – Temecula Young Artist Piano Competition. Click here for entry form. 

May 16 – Music in Art Youth Competition. Click here for entry form.


Student of the Month – Ethan Phan

imageEthan is 10 years old. His name means STRONG and STEADFAST.

He began studying piano since the age of 6, and came to Yiyi’s studio in the summer of 2012. Since studying with Yiyi, he has participated in the National Piano Guild Audition, MTAC Sonata/Sonatina Festival, MTAC Certificate of Merit, and many studio recitals. Thank you Ms. Yiyi for helping him to maintain his STEADFAST interest in music and piano.

At school, he continues to demonstrate his STRONG desire to learn by maintaining his grades with highest honors. He’s very proud to have received the Award of Excellent for demonstrating excellence in scholarship, leadership, and outstanding achievement from the GATE Office Educational Services Curriculum and Instruction. He is an avid reader and is a Spelling Bee Runner-up at Todd Elementary School.

He also maintains his STEADFAST love for God and faith in Him. At church, he loves to sing in the church choir. He has participated in the annual Bible Memorization Contest since age 4 and has received top awards for his age group.

He ran his first 5K at the age of 8. His STRONG desire is to run a marathon someday with his dad.

His love for his mom, dad, and sister Abigail remains STRONG and STEADFAST.

Teacher Comment: Ethan is a very bright student. I am not at all surprised to read about all of his academic achievements at school. I remember at our studio Sonatina Masterclass, he was asked to play RH melody in LH and vice versa (to consolidate memory), he did it right away, even with hands crossed over! Ethan has improved so much and I am so glad that he got 100% in this year’s Certificate of Merit Theory exam! He sets a great example for his sister and cousins who are also students at the studio. Ethan learns very quickly, understands new concepts in a heartbeat, and will be ready to do Level 3 next year. Congratulations, Ethan!

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