Twenty Surrey student musicians were given the inaugural Werner and Helga Höing Award during a Vancouver Symphony Orchestra concert Friday at Bell Performing Arts Centre.
One student from each secondary school in the city was nominated by their music teacher for excellence in music, leadership and community involvement, according to a VSO release.
The Höings also announced a scholarship at the VSO School of Music “to enhance music education within the Surrey School district though additional learning opportunities with VSO musicians at the VSO School of Music this year.”
The 20 award recipients announced Friday evening are Dominique Choquette, Kyle Han, Joey Zhexi Zhang, Rahul Mathews, Angelo Ferreros, Sharon Li, Charlie Bohun, Rica Quebral, Joshua Jenion, Filip Basiak, Tamim Alhmoud, Angela Huang, Alfred Abrenica, Taylor Stark, Sebastien Hunt, Natasha Calif, Viola Sabean, Allie Ho, Evan MacNamara and Nishant Amatyaa.
“Werner and Helga Höing are longtime supporters of the VSO and have generously endowed the Surrey Nights Series at the Bell Centre for the Performing Arts, as well as the VSO Connects in-school education programs in Surrey, both at the elementary and secondary school levels,” noted Sarah Yu, VSO publicist.
“They have a deep passion for music and for bringing it to Surrey. They are great philanthropists and support many causes in Surrey that benefit the greater community.
Earlier this year, the Höings were named finalists in the Surrey Mayor’s Arts Awards, in the Philanthropy category.
Friday’s concert at the Bell featured Latvian-born violinist Baiba Skride and a performance of Tchaikovsky’s final symphony, Pathétique.
The VSO returns to the theatre at Sullivan Heights Secondary on Saturday, Dec. 15 with its “A Traditional Christmas” concert, performed at 4 and 7:30 p.m.
On Jan. 9, a “VSO at 100” concert at the Bell will mark the orchestra’s 100th anniversary with a performance of the very first piece it ever performed – Schubert’s Rosamunde Overture – along with “celebrated works important in the VSO’s history,” according to a post at vancouversymphony.ca. Featured that night will be concert host Christopher Gaze, pianist Emma Hoglund and assistant conductor William Rowson.
Late last week, following Vancouver Symphony Society’s annual general meeting, the organization announced the publication of a new book called VSO 100: A Century of Memorable Moments, priced at $40 and available for sale in the VSO gift shop at Vancouver’s Orpheum Theatre.
Founded in 1919, the VSO performs to an annual audience of more than 250,000 people and features more than 50 guest artists each season. More than 170 concerts are performed annually by the VSO in the historic Orpheum other venues around Metro Vancouver, including Surrey’s Bell Performing Arts Centre.