The world’s preeminent classical guitar competition, the Parkening International Guitar Competition, has selected 15 competitors who will compete at Pepperdine University from Thursday, May 30, through Saturday, June 1, 2019. The competition honors the lifetime commitment of guitar virtuoso and Distinguished Professor of Music Christopher Parkening to fostering musical excellence in young artists.
The 15 competitors range in age from 19 to 29 years old and are among the international community’s most talented guitarists. They are Bokyung Byun, 24, Los Angeles, California, USA; Riccardo Calogiuri, 29, Italy; Javier García Verdugo, 25, Spain; Samuel Hines, 27, Mora, Minnesota, USA; Alec Holcomb, 23, Carmel, Indiana, USA; Junhong Kuang, 19, Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Beiyan Liu, 20, China; Christopher Mrofchak, 27, Tallahassee, Florida, USA; Cody Noriega, 26, Riverside, California, USA; Alex Park, 26, Culver City, California, USA; Miguel Checa Paz, 20, Spain; Sergey Perelekhov, 21, Russia; Andrea Roberto, 23, Italy; Marko Topchii, 28, Ukraine; and Tengyue Zhang, 25, China.
Judging the competition will be Mia Bongiovanni, Assistant General Manager of Media and Presentations for the Metropolitan Opera; Charlotte Lee, President and Founder of Primo Artists; Steve Schoen, former Vice President of Sony Music Masterworks and Sony/BMG; David Thomas, recording producer; and Pablo Sáinz Villegas, winner of the 2006 Parkening International Guitar Competition.
Three of the competitors will advance to the final round on Saturday, June 1 to perform a concerto with the Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra before a live audience in Pepperdine’s Smothers Theatre. The gold, silver, and bronze medalists will be announced at the conclusion of the final round.
In addition to the Parkening International Guitar Competition, Pepperdine will present the Parkening Young Guitarist Competition on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 28 and 29. The 10 competitors, ages 17 and younger, are Hilbert Chen, 10, Cupertino, California, USA; Maggie Grether, 15, Pasadena, California, USA; Joseph Malvinni, 11, Santa Barbara, California, USA; Mira Morales, 14, Los Altos, California, USA; Evelyn Nguyen, 16, Monrovia, California, USA; Garrett Podgorski, 17, Burbank, California, USA; Nikolas Rejto, 17, Australia; Eric Wang, 14, San Jose, California, USA; Darren Wu, 16, San Jose, California, USA; and Hui Chan Yun, 16, South Korea.
About the Parkening Competition: The competition, which debuted in 2006, offers the largest prize purse of any classical guitar competition in the world, with competitors vying for cash awards that total in excess of $65,000. The winner of the competition receives a gold medal, the Jack Marshall Prize of $30,000, and the most prestigious title in classical guitar.
The 2019 Parkening Competition is made possible by a generous grant from Howard and Roberta Ahmanson, as well as Frank Marshall and Kathleen Kennedy.
SOURCE Pepperdine University