Each year, Artistic Director Anne-Marie McDermott personally selects two young pianists to spend an immersive two weeks at Bravo! Vail, performing in varied programs for diverse audiences with the esteemed musicians of the Festival.
Angie Zhang, pianist, born in 1996, became the Second Prize Winner of the Eighth New York International Piano Competition in June 2016, a biennial event presented under the auspices of The Stecher and Horowitz Foundation.
Hailed by the Washington Post as a young artist with “boundless potential” who can “already hold his own with the best,” pianist Aristo Sham has dazzled audiences on five continents in countries ranging from Singapore and Argentina to Slovenia and Morocco.
Angie Zhang, pianist, born in 1996, became the Second Prize Winner of the Eighth New York International Piano Competition in June 2016, a biennial event presented under the auspices of The Stecher and Horowitz Foundation. Described as a “valuable advocate for classical music from her generation” by New York Concert Review, she is currently in her graduate studies as a Juilliard Kovner Fellow with Yoheved Kaplinsky and Joseph Kalichstein.
Equally at ease performing solo concerts, chamber music, and with orchestras, Angie revels in interpolating dynamic collaborative ventures alongside innovative recital projects and enjoys performing works by established living and promising young composers. For the past two years, she was chosen to work closely on world premieres with choreographers including Aszure Barton and Kate Skarpetowska for Juilliard New Dances Edition 2016 and 2017, respectively, which resulted in a total of ten critically-acclaimed live performances with the sophomore classes of Juilliard dancers at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater of Lincoln Center.
Charming audiences with her sensitive and thoughtful playing, she has performed extensively as soloist with orchestras since her debut at the age of ten in Portland, Oregon. Since 2016, Angie has appeared with the Olympia Symphony Orchestra under Huw Edwards, Juilliard Orchestra, conductor Maestro Fabio Luisi, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, conductor Andrews Sill, the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, conductor Matthew Kraemer, and the Downtown Sinfonietta of White Plains, conductor Vincent Lionti. She has returned as soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra of the Dominican Republic, Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra, and the Missouri Symphony Orchestra.
Awarded the Gluck Fellowship during her undergraduate studies, she traveled with other musicians, dancers, and actors to perform interactive concerts in hospitals, hospices, nursing homes, pediatric centers, and psychiatric wards of the five boroughs of NYC, and has performed at the Weill Cornell Medical School’s Music and Medicine Concert Series.
Aside from her musical initiatives, she has been a major contributor to her school community in distinct ways including serving as Chair of Juilliard Student Council, Student Ambassador, writing for the award-winning Juilliard Journal, leading admission tours and speaking on panels for prospective students, and empowering new generations of student leaders through the Juilliard Leadership Program.
She became the youngest in the history of the school to be awarded teaching fellowships for secondary piano, and keyboard sight-reading, and is also currently a faculty teaching assistant and departmental assistant for Keyboard Skills. Angie’s efforts were recognized at the 2017 Commencement Ceremony, where she won the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music and graduated with Academic Honors. Angie Zhang also sings in the Barnard-Columbia Chorus, and believes strongly in the importance of cultivating her mind, body, and soul at every step of her life.
Hailed by the Washington Post as a young artist with “boundless potential” who can “already hold his own with the best,” pianist Aristo Sham has dazzled audiences on five continents in countries ranging from Singapore and Argentina to Slovenia and Morocco. In 2009, Aristo was featured in the documentary ‘The World’s Greatest Musical Prodigies’, broadcast by Channel 4 in the UK. The New York Concert Review remarked that he “showed tremendous command and involvement,” and “in addition to showing passion and pianism, [his performance of Scriabin] reflected logic and clarity.” Aristo has also performed for royalty and dignitaries such as Prince Charles, the Queen of Belgium, and ex-President Hu of China, and collaborated with orchestras such as the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne and the Minnesota Orchestra.
Aristo first came under international recognition when he won First Prize and the Barenreiter Urtext Special Prize in the Ettlingen International Piano Competition in Germany in 2006, and First Prize in the Gina Bachauer International Junior Piano Competition in 2008. More recently, he was awarded First Prizes in the Wideman, PianoArts, and New York International Piano Competitions from 2015 to 2016. Since 2017, he has also won prizes in the Vendome Prize at Verbier Festival, Gina Bachauer, Dublin, Clara Haskil, Saint-Priest and Viotti International Piano Competitions. In 2018, he won First Prize and all three special prizes in the inaugural Charles Wadsworth Piano Competition, and won First Prize in the 2018 Young Concert Artists International Auditions.
Born in Hong Kong, Aristo was first introduced to the piano at the age of three, and joined the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts when he was six. His principal teachers include Professors Eleanor Wong, Colin Stone, and Victor Rosenbaum. He was a student at Harrow School in the UK, and is currently pursuing a BA in Economics and French, and an MMus in Piano Performance as a joint programme at Harvard University and New England Conservatory. In addition, he travels to Sweden regularly for studies at the Ingesund School of Music with Julia Mustonen-Dahlkvist. In his free time, Aristo enjoys travelling, languages, gastronomy and oenology.