Melbourne based pianist Hoang Pham, 28, took out the award for the 2013 ABC Symphony Australia Young Performer of the Year with a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto no. 1, opus 23 at last night’s Grand Final held at the Melbourne Town Hall. He performed with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Christopher Seaman.
He wins a cash prize of $25,000, the ABC Sir Charles Moses Young Performer’s Trophy, a professional CD recording, a paid performance with the MSO and other professional development opportunities.
As well, Hoang Pham won the Best Chamber Music Performance category, demonstrating his versatility with both large and small ensembles and swelling his cache of prizes.
Fleeing Vietnam as a baby with his family, Hoang Pham moved to Australia and studied privately with Rita Reichman at the Australian National Academy of Music. He subsequently studied with Marc Silverman at the Manhattan School of Music, where he completed a Master of Music degree.
Hoang Pham has appeared as a soloist with the Melbourne, Queensland and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. He won the Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition in 2005, was awarded Best Australian Pianist at the Sydney International Piano Competition in 2008, and in 2010 won the inaugural Melbourne Recital Centre Great Romantics Competition. His live performance of Chopin, Bach, Liszt and Paderewski was commercially released on the Melbourne Recital Centre’s Master Performers CD series.
He has made regular recital appearances overseas and performs both internationally and in Australia as a member of the Melbourne Piano Trio. In addition to his performance engagements, he has served as a jury member of the Piano/Ohio competition in Cleveland. Plans for 2013 include solo recitals at Melba Hall and for the Musical Society of Geelong, as well as performances with violinist Ji Won Kim at the MSO’s Stravinsky Festival in August.
Kate Lidbetter, CEO of Symphony Australia observed “His performance ….. was outstanding. Judging at this level of elite performance is never easy. All three Grand Finalists were exceptional but there can only ever be one winner…..The other finalists – 15 year old oboist Andrew Kawai and pianist Stefan Cassomenos (28) – also performed brilliantly and they each receive a runners-up prize of $7500.”
Also announced last night were the winners of the Best Recital – Andrew Kawai and Best Performance of an Australian Work – Grace Clifford. The winner of the People’s Choice Prize will be announced on ABC Classic FM on Monday 14 October.
Watch out for our review of the Grand Final performances.