Noelle Hadsall, Andy Shen, Suri Kim, Simon Liu & Max Afifi
A large audience was on hand Saturday afternoon in the Grand Ballroom of the Paso Robles Inn to hear the young winners of the Paderewski Youth Piano Competition. Joel Peterson acknowledged the donors and benefactors of the festival and introduced the Consul General of the Republic of Poland, Jarosław J. Łasiński.
The first young pianist on the program was Noelle Hadsall, 9, a pupil of Lana Bodnar, and Third Place winner in the Junior Division, who gave us a lovely performance of Chopin’s Waltz in C-sharp minor, Op. 64, No. 2. She was followed by Andy Shen, 12, Second Place winner of the Junior Division a pupil of Alan Boehner. Andy played with great precision and charm the Fuga Seccunda from Ludus Tonalis by Hindemith. Lastly in this group we heard the First Place winner of the Junior Division, Suri Kim, 10, a pupil of Dr. Lynne Garret, performing with elegant and stylistic grace the first movement of Haydn’s Sonata, Hob. XVI: 44 and the second and third movements of Kabalevsky’s Sonatina, Op. 13.
Finally we heard the two winners in the Senior Division, second place winner Simon Liu, 17, a pupil of Lyn Bronson, performing Mozart’s Fantasia in D Minor, K. 397 and Liszt’s grand virtuoso Mephisto Waltz No. 1, followed by the First Place winner of the Senior Division Max Afifi ,18, a pupil of Barbara Ruzicka, giving us elegant performances of Paderewski’s Mélodie, Op. 16, No. 2 and Chopin’s Etude in A-flat Major, Op. 25, No. 2.
The end of the Winners Recital consisted of presentation of checks and medals to the winners followed by congratulations from families and friends.