The competition was a large personal investment and I am very excited about the tour. It gives me the opportunity to work on even more contemporary repertoire and take it to communities across Canada.
—Brian Yoon, first prize winner
The 35th annual Eckhardt-Gramatté Competition
wrapped up Sunday May 6 with B.C. cellist Brian Yoon
cleaning up the prizes. The 25 year old Yoon was born in Korea and is currently studying with Desmond Hoebig
at Rice University.
The E-Gré competition promotes Canadian contemporary music. It began as a tribute to violinist/pianist and composer Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté
The competition is well known for its high standards and each year the quality of the competitors seems to rise higher and higher.
Past winners of the E-Gré competition include Angela Cheng
, Ben Heppner
, Gwen Hoebig
, Desmond Hoebig and Jon Kimura Parker
The competition rotates between piano, voice and strings. This year the category was strings.
Borealis String Quartet (M. Masaki)
The featured guest artist this year was the Borealis String Quartet
. The quartet performed a gala concert at the Brandon University School of Music
on Saturday evening, May 5. Their program was comprised entirely of string quartets that had been written for them.
Quartet members Bo Peng (cello), Patricia Shih (violin), Yuel Yawney (violin), Nikita Poegrebnoy (viola) made up the jury. T. Patrick Carrabré
chaired the jury.
Brian Yoon with Megumi Masaki (E-Gre)
According to competition Artistic Director Megumi Masaki
"It was an outstanding competition, truly exceptionally high level. The Borealis Quartet's Gala Recital was breathtaking!! WOW!"
Cellist Brian Yoon won the overall prize which includes $5000.00, a Canadian recital tour and a residency at the Casalmaggiore International Festival in Italy
. Yoon also received the City of Brandon prize of $1000.00 for his performance of the commissioned piece - John Burge
's "String Theory". In addition, Yoon's accompanist Eliza Ching won for "Best Collaborative Pianist". This fall, Yoon will take on the position of Principal Cello with the Victoria Symphony. Violinist Dorothy Ro
from Nova Scotia received the $3000.00 second prize. The $2000.00 third prize went to violinist Véronique Mathieu
Violinist Joshua Peters
of Winnipeg was a semi-finalist in the competition.