Our 2019 Winners
Twelve-year-old pianist Hudson Ragins was the winner of the 2019 Young Artists Festival Concerto Competition with his expressive performance of the third movement of Beethoven’s Concerto in C
Major, No. 1 for piano. Hudson began piano study at age seven and has studied with Wilton teacher Yoshie Akimoto, Steinway Artist, since he was 9. He is home schooled.
He has won many first prizes already, including the 2018 Steinway Competition, the 2018 Norwalk Symphony Young Artist Festival Junior Level, and the French Award at the Schubert Award Competi-tion. He was the alternate winner of Danbury Symphony Concerto Competition. In prior years he won first prizes at the Renee B. Fisher Competition and the Deborah Kahan Competition, and was third prize winner at the Princeton Festival Piano Competition.
Hudson has been a brilliant young pianist in Young Talent Chamber Music concerts in Connecticut and New York. He performed in a YTCM Trio as featured guests of the Greater Bridgeport Symphony conducted by Eric Jacobsen.
Hudson says, “My favorite way to express music is through playing with others, like chamber music. Music inspires me in all ideas, and sometimes a mythical world of dragons and evil forces. When I am not practicing piano nor getting into some kind of trouble, you can find me with my nose in a book or a role-player game.”
Heechan Ku, 17, is a junior at Bergen County Academies, started cello at the age of 9. Heechan has been studying with Clara Kim at The Juilliard School pre-college division since he was 13. Heechan has won prizes in several national and international cello competitions. He was the 1st prize winner at the YWCA New York Music Competition, International Grande Music Competition, and a winner of the Youngarts Competition, NJIO Concerto Competition, Camerata Artists International Competition. Heechan has also been invited to compete at the Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians. He has performed at Carnegie Hall, and Merkin Concert Hall, and Bruno Walter Auditorium in Lincoln Center on numerous occasions. This past summer he has attended the Interlochen Arts Camp and has received the fine arts award for his achievements. He has performed as a chamber musician as well and played in the Chamber Music Society program in 7th, 8th and 10th grade. He has also played in multiple orchestras that include the New Jersey Region I Junior High School Orchestra (2015-Principal Chair), New Jersey Region I High School Orchestra (2018), New Jersey All-State High school Orchestra (2018), All National Orchestra (2018), Juilliard Pre-college Symphony (2015 -2018), Juilliard Precollege Orchestra (2018- current).
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Fourteen year old Sadie Goodman began playing flute in the 4th grade at age 8. She has performed with the Norwalk Youth Symphony for four yearsand is currently Principal Flute of the Principal Orchestra. This year she won the Norwalk Youth Symphony Concerto Competition resulting in a solo performance with the Orchestra. Sadie was the first place winner of the Alexander and Buono International FluteCompetition 2018 which culminated in her debut at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall, NewYork. Shealso won first place in the New York Flute Club YoungMusicians Contest and both the junior and senior divisions of the Norwalk SymphonyOrchestra Young Artist Competition. She has received the Boxwood Festival(Lunenburg, Nova Scotia) Kasper Memorial Scholarship. Sadie has been invited to perform in masterclasses for Cobus du Toit (University of Massachusetts/Amherst), Nina Assimakopoulos(West Virginia University), Alice Dade (University of Missouri) and Gergely Ittzes (Tianjin Julliard School). She has furtherparticipated in both the Chamber Music Institute for Young Musicians and the WorldChamber Music and Improvisation sessions in Connecticut.
Sadie studies with Adrianne Greenbaum (Professor of Music, Mount Holyoke College) in Fairfield, CT. She is a freshman honors student at John Jay High School in Cross River, New York and enjoys rowing crew with the Maritime Rowing Club.