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In partnership with our Global Ambassador Lang Lang, we are excited to have three Lang Lang International Music Foundation Young Scholars join us for the Leeds Piano Festival. These three extremely talented individuals are Eden Chen, Chelsea Guo, and Amir Siraj, who were hand-picked by Lang Lang to join the programme, which offers them mentorship, tutelage, and unique opportunities for performance.


Eden Chen

Eden Chen, age 19, is a Lang Lang International Music Foundation Young Scholar, a Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist, and a freshman in the Exchange between Columbia University and The Juilliard School. He has been featured on NPR’s From the Top radio show. He has recently received the McGaughey Platinum Prize in the Glendale Piano Competition, and is a two-time recipient of the David Weiss Scholarship of the Young Musicians Foundation. Eden is currently studying with Rufus Choi.  Additionally, he has participated in master classes given by Lang Lang, Daniel Pollack, Seymour Bernstein, Hung-Kuan Chen, and John Perry.

Chelsea Guo

Lang Lang Young Scholar Chelsea Guo is a 17-year-old double major in the Pre-College Division of The Juilliard School. She studies piano with Hung-Kuan Chen and Tema Blackstone, and classical voice with Lorraine Nubar. Chelsea is a two-year US Chopin Foundation Scholarship recipient and a young artist of the Artemisia Akademie at Yale. Her performances have been broadcasted on WQXR’s “Young Artists Showcase” and NPR’s “From the Top”. Chelsea won the prestigious Nordmann Scholarship in Juilliard Pre-College and the Young Artists Concerto Competition in PianoTexas, after which she performed with the Fort Worth Symphony under the baton of Maestro Barry Douglas.

Amir Siraj

Eighteen-year-old American pianist Amir Siraj is a 2017 U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts. In the past year, he has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., and Millennium Park’s Pritzker Pavilion in Chicago. He received the Grand Prize at the Fidelity Investments Young Artist Competition, and First Prize at the Harvard Musical Association. Siraj has also been honored as a guest of NPR’s “From The Top” at Jordan Hall and selected as a winner of the National Young Arts Competition. Siraj is currently studying piano with Wha Kyung Byun and studying astrophysics at Harvard, where he also sings with the Krokodiloes, Harvard’s oldest a cappella group.

“The Leeds is entering a new phase of its history and redefining what a music competition can offer young performers. It shares my passion for nurturing extraordinary young talent and reaching out to encourage kids to engage in music. I am delighted to be its Global Ambassador and am excited about the new partnership with the Lang Lang International Music Foundation. I sincerely hope that together we can create wonderful opportunities for a new generation of pianists and music lovers” – Lang Lang

They will join us in Leeds and London for a series of recitals, masterclasses, and community engagement events. They will be taking part in a Masterclass with Alessio Bax on Tuesday 15 May at 11 am at Howard Assembly Room before their performances at Howard Assembly Room on Saturday 19 May at 7.15 pm and at Wigmore Hall on Wednesday 23 May at 1 pm. Alongside visits to schools, care settings, and the University of Leeds, they will also participate in the Piano Fantasia schools event at Leeds Town Hall.

On Friday 18 May at 1.15 pm, they will be taking part in a live online Q&A session at the Leeds College of Music to answer your questions about playing the piano, their experience as a Young Scholar, their visit to the UK etc.

Please send any questions you have to us through direct message on Twitter and Facebook.

Learn more about the Lang Lang International Music Foundation here.