Hayley Lau Wins Concerto Competition

Violist Hayley Lau has won the overall prize in the prestigious NSW Secondary Schools Concerto Competition conducted by the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra. The Willoughby resident and Wenona Girls’ School year 11 student, won this 39th iteration of the competition last weekend, with a performance of Paganini’s Sonata per la Grand Viola at the Concourse Concert Hall, Chatswood.

Hayley also won the orchestra’s own award for the best musician in rehearsal. She was presented with her prize by Ku-ring-gai Mayor, Cr Jeff Pettett. Having competed through heats and semi-finals, six individual finalists and a duo performed their pieces  for adjuducators former SSO principal horn Robert Johnson and violinist and previous finalist and KPO soloist, Emily Sun. The performers were accompanied by the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra (KPO), conducted by Artistic Director, Paul Terracini. Host for the afternoon was  ABC presenter Damien Beaumont.

The competition has been held annually since 1984 and provides invaluable opportunities for young musicians to showcase their talents and perform with an orchestra. Previous winners include musicians who have gone on to enjoy significatant national and international careers, like Amy Dickson, Natalie Chee, Grace Clifford, Simon Tedeschi and Anna da Silva Chen.

The winners:

  • Overall winner ($5000 and a KPO concert engagement in 2024): Hayley Lau of Willoughby and Wenona Girls’ School (viola – Paganini Grand Sonata)
  • Barbara Cran Award (Junior runner-up $1000): Clara Moloney of Leichhardt & Fort St High, (cello – Elgar concerto)
  • Barbara Robinson Award (Senior runner-up – $1000): Teresa Yang of Strathfield and Meriden Girls’ High (violin – Korngold concerto)
  • Multiple Instrumental Award ($400): Isabelle Teo of Roseville (Queenwood) and Nicole Wang of Mosman (Wenona), playing Gran Duo Concertante for Violin and Double bass by Giovanni Bottesini
  • KPO Player’s Award (for best work in rehearsal, $500): Hayley Lau (viola)

The other finalists who all received $250 vouchers and Musica Viva Concert Tickets were Sharon Zhao of Cherrybrook (Meriden Girls School) playing Sibelius’ Violin Concerto in D min, Opus 47 (Junior), Titan Sclavenitis of Surry Hills (Conservatorium High) playing Strauss’ Horn Concerto no.1  (Senior) and Sean Weatherley of Wollstonecraft (Sydney Grammar) playing Chasson’s Poeme Op 25 for violin (Senior).

The concert can be viewed on www.australiandigitalconcerthall.com

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