Recognized for her shimmering voice and her charismatic stage portrayals, Coloratura Soprano Laynee Dell, a native of Nebraska, has quickly established herself as an artist in demand since arriving in San Diego. Recently, Ms. Dell made her San Diego Opera debut in One Amazing Night accompanied by the San Diego Symphony. She joined the San Diego Opera Apprentice Artist Program for the 2019/20 season appearing in concerts throughout San Diego County and was the Study Cover for Gretel in Hansel & Gretel. Ms. Dell was previously a Young Artist with the Ezio Pinza Council for American Opera Singers Program. A winner of numerous competitions she’s been named the First Place Winner in the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus Young Artist Competition and Second Place Winner in the Advanced Division of the NATS San Diego Chapter.
Her operatic roles include, in part, the title role of Lakmè, Olympia in Les contes d’Hoffmann, the Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte, Birdie in Regina, Sofia in Il Signor Bruschino and Zerlina in Don Giovanni. As a core chorister with San Diego Opera she has appeared in productions of Carmen and Aida. Ms. Dell earned her Masters of Music from the Maryland Opera Studio at University of Maryland and her Bachelor of Music from Nebraska Wesleyan University. She is a student of Enrique Toral.
Kevin Song began learning the cello at age 3 and made his solo debut with the Fullerton College Orchestra at age 9. Since then, he has performed on National Public Radio’s From the Top Show 331 in Honolulu, HI, and was selected again for Show 371 in La Jolla, California. Kevin also served as the youngest Principal Cellist of Carnegie Hall’s National Youth Orchestra of the USA (NYO-USA) on its 2018 Europe Tour, performing in venues including London’s Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms, and joined NYO-USA again for its 2019 virtual summer program. Currently, Kevin also serves as Principal Cellist of the San Diego Youth Symphony, where he won the 2018-19 Ovation Concerto Competition, and Principal Cellist of the Torrey Pines High School Advanced Orchestra.
Through music, Kevin is also actively engaged in community service; he participates in annual benefit concerts for the Smile Train Organization to raise money for cleft surgeries for children in developing countries. He also volunteers as a cello teacher at the San Diego Academy of Music and Arts for Special Education, and privately teaches a student with special needs as well.
When he is not playing the cello, Kevin is a passionate advocate and journalist, serving as the current Editor-in-Chief of his nationally-ranked school newspaper, The Falconer. Kevin also enjoys creative writing and has received a National Gold Medal for Personal Essay and Memoir Writing from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.
Kevin currently studies with Ms. Sarah Koo Freeman. Next fall, he will attend Stanford University.
Adrian Liu graduated from Stanford in 2020, where he studied with Thomas Schultz; previously, he studied with Inessa Litvin in San Diego. Adrian made his orchestral debut with the San Diego Symphony in 2012 and made his solo recital debut at the La Jolla Athenaeum in 2013. At Stanford, Adrian performed over a dozen solo, chamber, and orchestral concerts, including with the St. Lawrence String Quartet, the Stanford New Ensemble, the Thomas Schultz Piano Seminar, and the Tysen Dauer/Adrian Liu piano duo. Adrian won the Blew-Culley-LaFollette Prize in 2020 and the Patrick Butler prize in 2017 and 2019. Adrian will begin a PhD in Philosophy at Rutgers – New Brunswick in 2022.
As a child, I was lucky to have parents that understood the personal and developmental abilities of music education. I was enrolled in my first private lessons at the age of three, learning piano at a local music store once a week. The following year I began taking violin lessons from a very well respected violin teacher in the area. I was never a very focused and determined child, and quickly violin lessons were stopped because of my disinterest. My piano lessons continued however, and as I got older I became more involved and interested in music making. My parents signed me up to take “woodwind” lessons, where a teacher presented me the options of studying flute or clarinet. I chose the clarinet and fell in love with the instrument, primarily because I could play low notes and feel cool vibrations through the instrument.
In high school I developed a true passion for music, as I met people who introduced me to the world of classical music. During this time I was exposed to the music of Mahler, Debussy, Scriabin and so much more. I joined my youth orchestra and began playing with local university groups. I became involved with many extracurricular musical activities that expanded my musical horizons. I attended many summer music festivals, most recently the Interlochen Summer Music Camp, where I met students from all over the country that shared similar passions. Making music at that level, being surrounded by world-renowned faculty and dedicated students was a truly unforgettable experience. I loved being able to witness another one of the powers of music: how it brings people together.
Malvyn Lai, 16 years old, is a high school sophomore from San Diego. He currently studies piano with Prof. Ning An. At age 10, he made his orchestral debut with the Kostroma Symphony Orchestra in Russia. He has since performed with the Danube Symphony in Budapest, Hungary, Toruń Symphony Orchestra in Poland, Culver City Symphony in California, Grossmont College Symphony in San Diego, and Concert Festival Orchestra in Long Island, NY. He also received the honor of performing with the Temecula Valley Symphony three times from 2015-2017 as the winner of the Young Artist Competition. Malvyn has won many awards and scholarships; his recent competition accomplishments include the 2021 National YoungArts Foundation Finalist in Classical Music: Piano receiving the Silver award in Classical Music, 2021 James and Francine Dobbin first place award -Music scholarship council’s (instrumental scholarship), 2021 the first place in the Southern California Philharmonic Young Artist Competition, the first prize in piano of the 2020 Walgreens National Concerto Competition, the Milton H. Saier. Memorial Award as the first place winner of the 2020 La Jolla Symphony Young Artist Competition, 2020-2021 Chopin Foundation of United States Scholarship recipient, the 2020 California Music Center Spotlight Merit Award, first place in the 2019 OC International Steinway & Sons Competition, first place in the 2019 Parness Young Artist Competition, second place in the 2019 Lee Piano Festival Competition, first place in the Southern California Regional CAPMT Concerto competition, first place in the Statewide Steinway & Sons Young Artist Piano Competition, first place in the Helen B. Goodlin Scholarship Competition and many other scholarships and competitions.
Malvyn’s previous teacher was Dr. Irina Bendetsky and he also received master classes from Prof. Fabio Bidini, Prof. Katarzyna Popowa- Zydroń, Maestro Rafał Blechacz, Maestro Vadym Kholodenko, Prof. Balázs Szokolay, Prof. Bernd Goetzke, Prof. Robert Shannon, Prof. Alvin Chow, Prof. Daniel Blumenthal, Prof. Valery Kuleshov, Prof. Carol Leone, and Prof. Joseph Rackers.
Besides music, he enjoys swimming, reading, science, and math. He has been a member of the San Diego competition math team for the American Regions Mathematics League and AIME competition since 2018. During the coronavirus pandemic, Malvyn has continued his performances virtually to support and entertain the elderly for senior retirement centers, and has also taken part in OCMD music school - Out of the Box virtual concert series.
French-American soprano Véronique Filloux has been noted for her “expressive, lovingly shaded soprano” (Opera News) and “radiant vocal ease” (San Diego Story). A current Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artist, she sings Despina (Così fan tutte), Chan (Charlie Parker’s Yardbird), and the title role in Semele in the 2020/21 season. She then gives a recital with Musicians Club of Women and spends the summer with Des Moines Metro Opera, singing L’Amour and covering La Folie in Platée.
In 2019/20, Véronique was seen as Shepherdess/Soloist (Venus and Adonis) with Opera Lafayette, with whom she made her Kennedy Center debut as Tigrane (Radamisto) the previous season. She returned to solos in Carmina Burana and Messiah with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra and Bach Collegium San Diego, and she rejoined Music of the Baroque as Pales in Bach’s “Hunt Cantata.” Prior to COVID-19, she was scheduled to debut with Salt Marsh Opera as Clorinda (La Cenerentola) and to sing Jeannie in Opera Lafayette’s modern premiere of Philidor’s The Blacksmith. In light of COVID-19, she was a soloist in Des Moines Metro Opera’s Virtual Festival.
Spending two summers with Central City Opera, Véronique sang Papagena (Die Zauberflöte) and the title role in Debussy’s La damoiselle élue, earning the 2019 Opera Guild Artist Sponsorship and winning both the company’s Young Artist Award and Apprentice Artist Award. Other recent highlights include her work with Chicago Opera Theatre, covering Brigitta (Iolanta) and Doodle (The Scarlet Ibis), and solo work in Handel’s Dixit Dominus with Music of the Baroque. With the Maryland Opera Studio, her roles included Soeur Constance (Dialogues des Carmélites), Servilia (La clemenza di Tito), Mae Jones (Street Scene), Amore (Orfeo ed Euridice), Lucia (The Rape of Lucretia), and Lily (The Young King- world premiere).
Véronique is a Pittsburgh District MONC winner, Musical Merit Foundation Competition prize winner, Orpheus Competition Handel Award winner, Dorothy Lincoln-Smith 2nd Place winner, Annapolis Opera Competition Encouragement Award winner and Audience Favorite, and Musicians Club of Women Harvey Foundation Prize winner. She earned her BM in Voice/Opera Performance and Operatic Languages at Northwestern University and her MM in Opera Performance at the Maryland Opera Studio.
Young Steinway Artist Anne Liu has stunned audiences with her sensitive tones, virtuosity, and coloristic ranges. Liu, a student at The Juilliard School under the guidance of Dr. Yoheved Kaplinsky and Professor Hung-Kuan Chen, and an academic student at Columbia University, was named a 2019 Presidential Scholar in the Arts, and has been honored by the President of the United States of America at the White House and the Secretary of Education at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium.
In recent years, Liu has won numerous prestigious competitions and awards around the world. In 2018, she was one of the two musicians in the nation to win the 2018 Davidson Fellow Scholarship along with Presidential Recognition. That same year, Liu was also named as a 2018 National YoungArts Finalist Winner and received U.S. Congressional recognition for this honor. Liu also won the Grand Prize and Full Scholarship to the 2019 Aspen Music Festival and School at the 2018 Musical Merit Competition. She gave a successful performance at Harris Concert Hall in Aspen, which was broadcasted live on Colorado Public Radio.
In addition, Liu is a top prize winner in the Young Musicians Foundation David Weiss Memorial Scholarship, the 8th Bosendorfer and Yamaha USAsu International Piano Competition and the most outstanding performance of a composition by a Russian composer, the Los Angeles International Young Musician Competition, the Los Angeles International Liszt Competition and a special prize for overall best performance of “Opera Paraphrase or Transcription” in all categories, the H.B. Goodlin Scholarship Competitions and the Grossmont Music Competition etc.
Liu has performed extensively in the U.S., China and Italy. Liu has performed in John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Carnegie Hall in NYC, Steinway Hall NYC, Harris Concert Hall in Aspen, San Diego Symphony Copley Hall, New World Center in Miami, Auer Hall in Indiana , Katzin Concert Hall in Arizona, Ningbo Concert Hall in China.
After making her concerto debut at the age of 12 playing Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 2 with the San Diego Great Orchestra, Liu has gone on to collaborate with the South Coast Symphony, the Southern California Philharmonic, and the La Jolla Symphony multiple times. She has performed with world-class musicians, such as Tony Award Winner--Mr. Christian Hoff.
Furthermore, Liu has been inspired and worked with worldly renowned musicians such as Maestro Menahem Pressler, Maestro Arie Vardi, Maestro Dmitri Bashkirov, Maestro William Grant Naboré, Maestro Stanislav Ioudenitch and Ms. Olga Kern in masterclasses.
From San Diego, California, Liu started playing the piano at the age of four. Her previous teachers include Ethan Dong and Mrs.Inessa Litvin.
From San Diego, California, Jonathan Lin has been playing cello
since the age of nine. Jonathan graduated with a bachelor's degree in cello performance under the tutelage of Dr. William Grubb in 2018 and a Masters of Music degree at the Manhattan School of Music with Prof. Philippe Muller in 2020. While not in school, he also studies with Mr. Robert Demaine. Previous teachers include Joon Sung Jun, Bing Yan, Chia-Ling Chien, Yao Zhao, and Andrew Shulman. He has played in master classes with William Grubb, Tom Landschoot, Mihai Tetel, FUGU Trio, Yehuda Hanani, Alan Rafferty, Adriana Contino, Brooklyn Rider Quartet, and Hans Jorgen Jensen. Teachers he has studied with have included Merry Peckham, Richard Weiss, Andrew Mark, Yu Ming Qing, John Walz, Yehuda Hanani, Lynn Harrell, Fred Sherry, Steve Doane, David Finckel, Timothy Eddy, Astrid Schween, Julia Lichten, Darrett Adkins, Wolffram Koessel, David Ying, Marion Feldman, Peter Stumpf, Felix Wang, Nicholas Tzavares(Shanghai Quartet), Kurt Baldwin(Arianna Quartet), Pitnarry Shin(Minnesota Orchestra), Paul Dwyer, Alexander Baillie, Richard Aaron, Joel Krosnick, David Geber, Natasha Brofsky, Alan Stepansky, Philippe Muller, Mark Kosower, Melissa Kraut, Sharon Robinson, and Ronald Leonard. He has been coached in chamber music by the American String Quartet, Ariel String Quartet, Ko Iwasaki, Richard Slavich, Yehuda Hanani, Great Wall String Quartet, Shanghai Quartet and many others. Music festivals attended include the Idyllwild Summer Music Festival, Great Wall International Music Academy, Montecito International Music Festival, Catskill High Peaks Festival, Cincinnati Young Artists Chamber Music Festival, Bravo International Music Academy, Madeline Island Chamber Music, Heifetz International Music Institute, Josef Gingold Chamber Music Festival, and Festival MusicAlp. Jonathan will be attending the Domaine Forget Academy, studying with Johannes Moser and the Orford Music Academy, studying with Michel Strauss and Lluis Claret. Jonathan has been a prize winner for many competitions, most notably he was a finalist for the YMF Debut Orchestra Concerto Competition in 2015, 2nd Prize winner of the Montecito International Music Festival's Pre-College Competition in 2014, 2nd Prize winner of the CCM Undergraduate Instrumental (Baur) Competition in 2016, finalist in the 2017 Musical Merit Foundation of Greater San Diego Competition, and 2nd Prize(Strings Division) Winner of San Diego's Music Scholarship Council Competition in 2021. Jonathan is the 2018 CCM's Werner Scholarship Recipient. Being the San Diego Civic Youth Orchestra's principal cellist for two years, he performed in the Side-By-Side with the San Diego Symphony in 2013 and 2014, while being the principal cellist in 2014 for the Side-By-Side with the San Diego Symphony orchestra. he was also a member of the Music For All's Honor Orchestra of America in 2014.
Mexican-American Soprano, Amanda Olea has distinguished herself as an emerging young artist, performing with Cincinnati Opera, Central City Opera, Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Teatro Nuovo, and Utah Lyric Opera.
A strong advocate for new work, Ms. Olea began an independent project with her father Oscar Olea on the opera Diario de un Fantasma. This one woman opera start Ms. Olea, written by Oscar Olea.
This spring she sung Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos with CCM Opera and will be participated in the OperaFusion:NewWorks workshop of the new opera The Hours by Kevin Puts. In 2019, Ms. Olea joined Central City Opera as an Apprentice Artist, singing the role of La Zia in Madama Butterfly.
During the 2018-2019 season, Ms. Olea joined Central City Opera as an Apprentice Artist, singing the role of La Zia in Madama Butterfly. In the fall of 2018, Ms. Olea performed Flora in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw with CCM Opera.
In the summer of 2018, Ms. Olea was an Apprentice Artist at Teatro Nuovo, studying Despina in Cosí fan tutte. Notable performances include; Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with the Manhattan Opera Studio, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro with Utah Lyric Opera, and Adina in L’elisir d’amore at San Diego State University.
In frequent demand for recital and concert work, Ms. Olea has been the soprano soloist in Orff's Carmina Burana, Handel's Messiah with Cincinnati Collegium, the Mozart Requiem, and the Faure Requiem.
In 2019 and 2020, Ms. Olea received the John Alexander Memorial Award within the prestigious CCM Opera Scholarship Competition, as well as first place awards from the Virginia Hawk Competition, La Jolla Symphony Young Artists Competition, and the Musical Merit Competition.
Ms. Olea is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Musical Arts at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, under the tutelage of Dr. Gwendolyn Detwiler. She holds a Master’s of Music from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and a Bachelor’s of Music from San Diego State University.