Quincy Symphony Orchestra Announces Winners of 59th Annual Young Artists Competition

The Quincy Symphony Orchestra has announced the winners of its 59th Annual Young Artists Competition. They are Alexi Li, piano, Stephen Javaux, cello, and Derek Froman, piano. The competition, open to area 10th through 12th graders, was held on Dec. 7 at First Union Congregational Church, Quincy. The winning musicians will perform as soloists during QSO’s Young Artists Concert on Feb. 9.

Stephen Javaux is a homeschool student in Quincy. He has studied the cello for 11 years and is a student of Laura Shaw at Preucil School of Music in Iowa City, Iowa. He has also studied with Greg Clinton of Omaha, Neb. and Paul York at the University of Louisville, Ky. Stephen is principal cellist for the Preucil orchestra and toured with them to China in 2013, where he met the First Lady of China and performed on the Great Wall. He played in the pit orchestra for the Louisville Opera Company’s performances of “The Merry Widow,” has played in the youth symphonies in Omaha, Louisville, and Quincy, and has played with the QSO. In 2012 Stephen won first place at Nationals for the Talents for Christ competition. After graduation this spring, Stephen will pursue degrees in Fire Science and Paramedics, and also plans to receive training to teach cello lessons. His parents are Greg and Stephanie Javaux. Stephen will perform Popper’s “Hungarian Rhapsody.”

Alexis Li is a foreign exchange student at Quincy Notre Dame High School. She studied piano in China for 11 years and is now a student of Peg Holzgrafe. She also studies with Dr. Dylan Marney. She has taken part in the Guild Audition, Quincy Conservatory of Music Scholarship Competition, IHSA Solo & Ensemble Contest, and the IMEA All-District Audition. Alexis plays the piano in QND Jazz band and the flute in QND Concert, Pep and Marching bands. She is a member of the art club, cross country, Key club and National Honor Society. She also enjoys tennis. Alexis will continue her music studies as she pursues a Pre-Pharmacy degree at Purdue University in 2014. Alexis is the daughter of Li Xinghai and Ouyang Danxin; her host parents are Mary and Jeff VanKanegan. She will perform the first movement of Haydn’s “Piano Concerto in D Major.”

Derek Froman is a sophomore at Canton (Mo.) R5 High School. Derek has studied piano for 10 years as a student of Mary Dieker. He also studies with Dr. Dylan Marney at Culver-Stockton College and has studied with Dr. Anda Zirnitis. Derek plays percussion in the Canton Marching Band and the saxophone for concert band. He is a member of the CHS Chamber Choir and has been the accompanist for the Junior High and High School Choirs. Derek is a member of FBLA, quiz bowl, Key Club, and is sophomore class president. He has participated in the ISMTA Duet Festival in Quincy for the past 10 years and won the ISMTA Piano Audition for the West District in 2011 and 2012. Derek has been a National Member of Guild for seven years. As a freshman, he received a 1 rating at the district and state contests for his piano solo. Derek has been the first place winner of the Roxanna Peine Music Scholarship for the last four years. He is the son of Trung and Kathy Froman and plans to major in music at college. Derek will perform the first movement of Saint-Saens’ “Piano Concerto No. 2.”

For 59 years, the QSOA’s Young Artists competition has given outstanding high school musicians the opportunity to perform as a concert soloist, accompanied by a symphony orchestra. Such a performance can be a springboard for a young person to choose a lifelong commitment to the arts. The annual Young Artists Concert rewards excellence in musicianship and enriches the performer as well as the audience and orchestra members. Call the symphony office 222-2856 or visit www.qsoa.org for more details on the Feb. 9 performance and the competition.