Introductions

Saturdays at 11:00 am

Members of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras perform during a live broadcast of Introductions from Millennium Park. (Photo: Tipping Point Photography)

Hear talented pre-college classical musicians from the Chicago area

Introductions is WFMT’s weekly Saturday morning program that features talented pre-college classical musicians in the Chicago area. We invite soloists and chamber ensembles to perform live in WFMT’s Fay & Daniel Levin Performance Studio. Large ensembles, including orchestras, choirs, and bands, are recorded at their home venues and broadcast at later dates. The program also features youth music competition winners. While many Introductions alumni pursue careers outside of music, some have gone on to study at some of the most prestigious music schools around the world and maintain careers as professional musicians.

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LIVE: John Cao, 16, piano

May 20, 2017

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature 16 year old pianist John Cao. John is a student at John Hersey High School and studies piano with Alan Chow at Northwestern University. John has also participated in masterclasses with Professor Robert McDonald of the Curtis Institute and Julliard School, Gilmore Artist Award recipient Kirill Gerstein, and pianist Spencer Myer, among others. John’s ...

LIVE: Jennifer Yu Wang, 17, flute

May 13, 2017

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature 17 year old flutist Jennifer Yu Wang. Jennifer is a junior at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools and has studied flute with Susan Levitin for 8 years. Jennifer’s awards include being a winner of the senior division at the 2013 Chicago Flute Club and also being a winner at the 2016 DePaul Youth ...

2017 Midwest Young Artists Conservatory Concerto Competition Winners

April 15, 2017

On Saturday’s program we highlight winners from the 2017 Midwest Young Artists (MYA) Conservatory Concerto Competition at Pick-Staiger Hall in Evanston. The featured winners include pianist George Dalianis, a sophomore at Maine South High School and violinist Karisa Chiu, a home-schooled senior in high school. Both George and Karisa performed concertos along with the MYA Symphony Orchestra, under the direction ...

LIVE: Kayla Cabrera, 18, viola

March 25, 2017

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature 18 year old violist Kayla Cabrera. Kayla began her music studies at age 13. She is currently a scholarship fellow at the Academy of the Music Institute of Chicago, where she studies with Roland and Almita Vamos. She is also principal viola of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra. She has had several solo engagements at ...

LIVE: Trio Fiammata

March 4, 2017

Trio Fiammata is a piano trio made up of students from the Midwest Young Artists Conservatory in Highwood, IL. Their members include 15 year old violinist Kirsten Lee (Bolingbrook High School), 17 year old cellist Matthew Udry (Tremper High School, Kenosha, WI), and 15 year old pianist Kimberly Han (Lake Forest High School). The trio was recently awarded Honorable Mention ...

Merit School of Music Performathon Preview

February 18, 2017

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature student chamber groups from the Merit School of Music in anticipation of Performathon, the school’s annual fundraiser that takes place February 24 and February 25. The fundraiser helps ensure that the Alice S. Pfaelzer Conservatory stays tuition-free for music students. The first ensemble we’ll feature is the KGT Woodwind Trio. The trio recently won ...

Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra Celebrates 70th Season Part 2 of 2

February 4, 2017

On Saturday’s broadcast, we feature the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra (CYSO) in selections from their November 20, 2016 concert at Symphony Center in downtown Chicago. The orchestra is celebrating its 70th season.

Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra Celebrates 70th Season Part 1 of 2

January 28, 2017

On Saturday’s broadcast, we feature the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra (CYSO) in selections from their November 20, 2016 concert at Symphony Center in downtown Chicago. The orchestra is celebrating its 70th season.

Introductions Holiday Special: Music Institute of Chicago Academy Cellos

December 24, 2016

On this special holiday broadcast of Introductions, we will be featuring the Cello Choir of the Music Institute of Chicago. We are dedicating this program to the memory of Gilda Barston, who taught cello at the Music Institute of Chicago for over 40 years. She was an advocate for the Suzuki training method, and her teaching was world renowned. Gilda ...

DePaul Concerto Festival Part 3 and Camerata Chicago Academy

December 10, 2016

On the first part of Saturday’s broadcast, we feature winners from the DePaul Concerto Festival for Young Performers. This year’s winners’ concert took place on February 14, 2016 at DePaul University. Young winners have the opportunity to perform a movement from a concerto with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Mina Zikri. On the second part of Saturday’s ...

Amelia Piscitelli, 15, violin

December 3, 2016

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature 15 year old violinist Amelia Piscitelli. Amelia formally began playing violin at the age of four. From 2009-2014, she studied violin with Debbie Edwards. She has been a member of the Camerata Chicago Academy Orchestra since 2015 and also has attended Sforzando String Camp for the last 7 summers. Most recently, she made her ...

New World String Quartet of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra

November 5, 2016

The New World String Quartet is composed of Nicole Tong, Micah Yoo, Beatrice Chen, and Noah Chen. All members are freshmen in high school. Violinists Nicole Tong and Micah Yoo share first and second violin positions for the quartet, and both study with Desirée Ruhstrat. Violist Beatrice Chen studies with Paul Neubauer, and cellist Noah Chen studies with Hans Jorgen ...

DePaul Concerto Festival Part 2 and Allison Bystron, 18, soprano

October 29, 2016

On the first part of Saturday’s broadcast, we feature winners from the DePaul Concerto Festival for Young Performers. This year’s winners’ concert took place on February 14, 2016 at DePaul University. Young winners have the opportunity to perform a movement from a concerto with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Mina Zikri. Allison graduated from the Chicago High ...

DePaul Concerto Festival Part I and New Trier High School Symphonic Wind Ensemble

October 22, 2016

On the first part of Saturday’s broadcast, we feature winners from the DePaul Concerto Festival for Young Performers. This year’s winners’ concert took place on February 14, 2016 at DePaul University. Young winners have the opportunity to perform a movement from a concerto with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Mina Zikri. On the second part of Saturday’s ...

LIVE: Beatrice Chen, 13, viola

October 1, 2016

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature 13 year old violinist Beatrice Chen. Beatrice Chen is a home schooled freshman, and she studies viola with Paul Neubauer. Beatrice made her concerto debut at age 11 with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra at the Winner’s Concert of the 12th DePaul Concerto Festival. Since then, she won first prize of the 2015 and 2016 American Protégé International Concerto Competition. As a ...

LIVE: David Hou, 16, piano

September 24, 2016

On Saturday’s live broadcast, we feature 16 year old pianist David Hou of Hawthorn Woods, Illinois. David is currently a junior at Adlai E. Stevenson High School and a Music Institute of Chicago Academy Alum. David made his solo debut with the Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra (Appleton, WI) in February 2012, performing Franz Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in E-flat Major. ...

Music Institute of Chicago Academy 10th Anniversary Celebration Concert

August 20, 2016

On Saturday’s broadcast, we feature excerpts from the Academy at the Music Institute of Chicago’s 10th Anniversary Celebration Concert. The concert took place in Nichols Concert Hall in Evanston on Saturday, May 14, 2016. Highlights include Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante in E-flat Major, K. 364, featuring violinist Rachel Barton Pine and violist Matthew Lipman. Roland Vamos led the Academy Chamber Orchestra. For more information ...

Midwest Young Artists Conservatory Symphony Orchestra

August 13, 2016

On Saturday’s broadcast, we present the Midwest Young Artists Conservatory Symphony Orchestra. We will feature highlights from their spring 2016 concerts from Pick-Staiger Concert Hall at Northwestern University. Founded in 1993 by Dr. Allan Dennis, MYA Conservatory is a full-curriculum pre-college music school for young musicians. MYA is now approaching their 25th anniversary and Housed in the Old Stockade Building at Fort ...

Iris Trio and Jayne Dilliberto, 18, soprano

July 30, 2016

Iris Trio was formed at the Academy at the Music Institute of Chicago. The trio includes Ria Honda, violin; Ayoun Alexandra Kim, cello; and Natalie Nedvetsky, piano. Milana Pavchinskaya and Paul Vanderwerf coach the trio. All three members of the Iris Trio were semifinalists at the 2015 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. In addition, the members have individually won numerous competitions and prizes locally, regionally, ...

Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra and CYSO Encore Chamber Orchestra

July 23, 2016

On Saturday’s broadcast, we present selections from the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra and CYSO Encore Chamber Orchestra’s spring concerts.  The Encore Chamber Orchestra is made up of students who intend to pursue careers as music professionals. On Saturday, April 9, the CYSO Encore Chamber Orchestra performed at the Logan Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Chicago. We’ll ...