Shing Gao

Member Since Fall 2018

Virginia, Northern Region

Shing Gao is currently a sophomore at the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. He took piano lessons at a young age and had already scored superior markings in the Virginia Concerto and Spring Festival Competitions before the age of 10. Shing started playing the violin in the sixth grade and has participated in many ensembles since then, some of which include the Mclean Youth Orchestra as well as the Longfellow Chamber Orchestra (with whom he performed at the 2016 Virginia Music Educator’s Association conference as the Assistant Concertmaster). During his first year at TJHSST, Shing was accepted into the top orchestra program (TJ Symphonic). He also auditioned for a seat in the Senior District Orchestra program among over 100 other competing violinists. Shing placed fourth overall in the SDO audition, becoming the highest-ranked freshman auditionee. He hopes to continue his musical studies after high school while pursuing a degree in the biology field. Shing joined the “Back to Bach” Project in Northern Virginia, in the fall of 2018 as a regional director.

Alyssa Kim

Member Since Fall 2018

Virginia, Northern Region

Alyssa Kim is currently a sophomore at Langley High School in McLean, Virginia. She began violin in third grade and is currently studying under the instruction of Mrs. Lya Stern. During her freshman year, she ranked top ten in the 2018 All-Virginia Orchestra and had the opportunity to perform at the Carpenter Theatre in Richmond, Virginia. She also ranked third in the 2018 Northern Virginia Regional Orchestra and was concertmaster for the Junior District 12 Orchestra in 2017. She has been a member of the American Youth Philharmonic Orchestras (AYPO) for four years and is currently a first violinist in their most advanced group, the American Youth Philharmonic (AYP) in addition to being the Associate Concertmaster for her school orchestra. Alyssa was chosen to perform with The Piano Guys at The National Theatre in Washington D.C. During the summer of 2018, she attended the Philadelphia International Music Festival and also had the privilege of being a violin coach for AYPO’s Summer String Academy for elementary-aged kids. She is a founder and president of the Saxon Chamber Ensemble at her school, a club to improve active listening, technical skills, and tonality through playing in a small group of musicians. She is excited to be a member of the “Back to Bach” Project to share her talents and passion with children and inspire future musicians. Alyssa joined the "Back to Bach" Project in the Fall of 2018.

Brittany Peng

Member Since Fall 2018

Virginia, Northern Region

Brittany is a sophomore at McLean High School, VA, where she plays the cello in the Philharmonic Orchestra. She started playing cello at age 10 and currently studies with John Moran of the Peabody Conservatory. Brittany also had lessons with Hai Ye-Ni, principal cellist of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and Lori Barnet, principal cellist of the National Philharmonic. Brittany was selected to play and served as cello section lead in the Virginia Music Educators Association (VMEA), Junior and Senior District XII Honors Orchestras in 2016 and 2017. She received supreme ratings at the VBODA Solo & Ensemble Festivals from 2014 to 2017. In 2016, Brittany was accepted into the McLean Youth Orchestra directed and conducted by John Devlin, former Cover Conductor of National Symphony Orchestra.  Brittany was accepted into the Soloists Ensemble Program and the Chamber Music Program of the Philadelphia International Music Festival in 2017. During PIMF, she made her solo debut, where she performed Vivaldi Cello Sonata No. 5 with the Ensemble and Silent Woods at the Solo Performance Hour. Brittany attended the National Philharmonic (NP) Summer String Institute in 2017, 2018, and 2019, working with Piotr Gajewski, music director & conductor of NP.  Additionally, Brittany is the co-director of her school’s Music Buddies Program. Brittany joined the “Back to Bach” Project in the fall of 2018 as regional associate director. 

Alexander Suh

Member Since Fall 2018

Virginia, Northern Region

Alexander Suh is a rising 10th grader and has been playing piano since the age of five.  He loves using music to channel his feelings, and his ability to do so has significantly improved since he joined the studio.  Alexander was awarded second place in the Robert Spencer Concert Competition, Achievement Awards, and the Northern District Auditions.  He was also a top prizewinner in the WMTA Bela Bartok Competition and performed at the Hungarian Embassy.  Alexander was excited to be invited this past summer to perform chamber music as part of the National Symphony Summer Music Institute.  As part of this program, he performed in multiple chamber concerts, including a performance live-streamed from Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center.  With an energetic and curious mind, he enjoys exploring various subjects, including computer programming, math, science, and English when he is not busy with his music.  Alexander looks forward to another wonderful year of musical journey and personal growth. He joined the Back to Bach Project in the fall of 2018.

Jaesung Son

Member Since Spring 2018

Virginia, Northern Region

Jaesung Son, 21, studied the violin under Dr. Ann Setzer and Khullip Jeung. Volunteering has always been an important part of his life. Since age 13, he has been an active member of the Good Neighbor Ensemble, which brings classical and contemporary music to the nursing homes in northern New Jersey. In 2014, he set up an 8-week program at the Hawthorne public library to teach violin to 8-12 year old Hawthorne locals who had not previously held the violin. In his final year at Penn, he was a part of the Philadelphia Back to Bach team and is excited to be joining the Northern Virginia and DC Back to Bach team in 2019.

Eshan Parkash

Member Since January 2019

Virginia, Northern Region

Eshan Parkash has played the violin for over 9 years. Ever since he began lessons at the age of 5, he has shared his love of music with the community in the District Strings group (Levine School of Music). The group has performed at senior living homes, hotel receptions, and even at the National Cathedral in Washington DC. Eshan won the Cogen Competition at the age of 9. He has been frequently selected as concertmaster in the top orchestra groups in school and is one of the few freshmen that have been accepted into the Philharmonic Orchestra at Mclean High School. He was also concertmaster of the Capitol Symphonic Youth Orchestras, and is currently principal 2nd violinist in the highest group. Recently, Eshan was selected to perform as a 1st violinist in Northern Virginia’s Senior Regional Orchestra. He hopes to continue to share his passion for music through the “Back to Bach” program, which he joined in the fall of 2018.

Andrew Chen

Member Since January 2019

Virginia, Northern Region

Andrew Chen began playing the violin in the 4th grade and currently studies with Mrs. Natalia Yampolsky. He was a member of the AYPO program in the 7th grade and played as a first violin in the American Youth String Ensemble in the 2015-2016 season. He has attended the Philadelphia International Music Festival in the summer before 7th grade. As a freshman in 9th grade, he was accepted into his school’s top orchestra and landed a seat in the Senior District Orchestra program. Currently, he plays in the American Youth Symphonic Orchestra as a part of the 2018-2019 season for the AYPO program. Outside of music, he participates in school sports, such as cross country and track & field. He also enjoys art as well as writing, serving as a staff writer for his school’s newspaper. After high school, he hopes to pursue a career in the biological or medical field while continuing his studies in music.
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