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UBC School of Music Pianists Shine in 5 Piano Fantasy: Star Wars, Harry Potter, Holst

The Chan Centre for the Performing Arts at the University of British Columbia is proud to present 5 Piano Fantasy: Star Wars, Harry Potter, Holst for the family-friendly Inspired at the Chan series on Sunday, November 26 at 3PM.

The show is free for children, UBC students and Indigenous peoples.

The concert will feature five concert grand pianos and five virtuoso pianists from the UBC School of Music. Emulating the sounds of an orchestra, the music performed includes an arrangement of Gustav Holst’s Jupiter from “The Planets” for five pianos, Thomas Kobialka’s arrangement of Jedi Steps and the Finale from Star Wars, and Harry Potter for 5 Pianos as arranged by Jarrod Radnich and Soojung Jeon.

“This concert, which makes connections to the wider UBC campus and brings in the community, is the kind of inspiring programming we are excited to create at the Chan Centre,” says Pat Carrabré, director of the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts and the UBC School of Music. “The five students will get to show their remarkable talents, exemplifying the standard of excellence that we provide at the School of Music. We are proud to give them this opportunity to perform in our beautiful hall, which will be just one of their many public performances in the long careers ahead of them.”

Fergus Kwan is an undergraduate studying Piano Performance and Composition with Dr. Corey Hamm and Professor Jennifer Butler respectively. As a pianist, he has won awards including the Best Performance of a Work by Chopin, awarded by The Vancouver Chopin Society, Best Performance of Jordan Nobles’ The Architect’s Dream, awarded by the Architecture of Music Competition, and is a winner of the Elevato International Piano Competition, Canadian Music Competition, Pacific Youth International Competition, Architecture of Music Competition and Vancouver Westcoast Music Society. For his solo piece, Kwan will perform Franz Liszt’s Un Sospiro from 3 Études de concert, S. 144.

Named by CBC as one of “30 Hot Canadian Classical Musicians Under 30,” Hamilton Lau is a Vancouver native and undergraduate also studying with Dr. Hamm. He won the UBC Concerto Competition in 2022, the Canadian Music Competition in 2021 and 2019, and the Performing Arts BC Provincial Festival in 2022 and 2018. Lau also achieved first place at the Kay Meek Competition and the Phyllis Salter Piano Competition, earned multiple awards at the Vancouver International Music Competition, and was selected as a semi-finalist at the 2022 OSM Competition. Lau will perform the third movement of Sergei Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 7 in B-flat major, Op. 83 as well as Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “How Fair This Spot” arranged by Arcadi Volodos.

A doctorate student with Dr. David Fung, Christine Ngai has performed across the continent, the Netherlands, and Italy. Her major awards include First Prize in the Canadian Music Competition, a Gold Medal from the Royal Conservatory of Music, and scholarships to Indiana University where she received a Bachelor of Music with Distinction in Piano Performance. She continued her studies at the Conservatoire de Musique de Montréal, earning a Master of Music and a CSPM under the tutelage of André Laplante. Ngai will perform the first movement of Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 4 in C minor, Op. 29.

Vivienne Thamrin studied with one of Indonesia’s leading pianists and teachers, Dr. Edith Widayani before moving to Beijing at 15-years-old to study at the Central Conservatory of Music. Thamrin’s performances have taken her across North America, Europe, and Asia. This past year, she took first prize at The Bjorn and Lori Hareid Provincial Concerto Competition, culminating in a performance of Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto with the VAM Symphony Orchestra at the Orpheum. She has received numerous awards at national and international competitions, including Gold Prize at the WPTA Singapore International Piano Competition, and first prizes at the 2020 Ananda Sukarlan Award, Indonesia National Piano Competition, and the 2016 Blüthner National Piano Competition. For her solo piece, Thamrin will perform Rachmaninoff’s Prelude in D Major, Op. 23 No. 4.

Masters student Daniel Tong, studying with Professor Mark Anderson as his primary mentor and Professor Rena Sharon for chamber music studies, is an active participant in festivals and competitions. He has received finalist standings at the UBC Silverman Piano Competition in 2020, as well as the Canadian Music Competition. He has most recently travelled to the Scotia Festival of Music in Halifax this past summer, where he performed in the finale showcase concert, as well as Domaine Forget de Charlevoix in Quebec for their student concert series in 2021. A resident of the North Shore, Tong actively participates in the community by teaching, engaging with other musicians, and performing for local groups. Tong will perform Nikolai Medtner’s Fairy Tale, Op. 51 No. 4.

The solo pieces will conclude the 60-minute concert, which will be performed without intermission.

Thu Oct 12, 2023