The Nova String Quartet was formed in October 2017 and it is an exciting quartet of young Hong Kong musicians dedicated to the presentation and promotion of chamber music. Our members include some of the most outstanding graduates who received their education at the world’s most renowned tertiary institutions for music, including Hochschule für musik Carl Maria von Weber Dresden, Taipei National University of the Arts, Bard College and the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. Members of the quartet had studied abroad with Mr. Michael Ma, Mr. Ivan Chan, Miss Natalia Prishepenko and Mr. Peter Wiley respectively. After finished their individual studies, members of the quartet decided to play together and start their new musical voyage together. The Nova String Quartet is selected by audition to participate in the McGill International String Quartet Academy 2018 this summer. Beside performing, they will also be taking classes from the lengendary Alben Berg Quartet, members of the Miró Quartet and Quatuor Ebène.
Sean LAI, violin
Lai holds degrees from the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and Hochschule für Musik Carl Maria von Weber Dresden. Under the tutelage of Miss Ho Hung Ying from Hong Kong and Miss Natalia Prishepenko from Germany.
Lai has been an active chamber musician, as the first violinist in the Zephyrus String Quartet formed in Hong Kong, Lai and his team were invited to perform in the open stage of the Hong Kong Chamber Festival, “Academy New Generation Artists Concert”, and “Academy Dance: Opus 16: Point of Departure”, all ended with good comments.
Lai also have equal interest in being an orchestral player and baroque music player. Lai has participated the NJO as the associated concert master in 2012 and played concerts in
Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Dan Hague and Belgium with the orchestra. Lai performed regularly with Die Konzertisten and various opera companies in Hong Kong. Lai has participated various baroque master classes and lessons from Monica Hugget, Nadja Zwiener, New Dutch Academy, Academy of Ancient Music and The English Concert.
Vivian SHEN, violin
Born in Taipei, Vivian Shen began studying the violin at the age of five and was admitted to the Dun Hua Elementary School Music Class. In 2013, she entered the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts studying with Prof. Michael Ma. She is currently in her last year of pursuing her Bachelors degree at the Academy. Vivian won the few First Prize in Taiwan’s international competition, both in solo violin playing and chamber music. She won the concerto competition in the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts with Tchaikovsky violin concerto and performed with orchestra in 2016. During her years of studies, Vivian received coachings from Sylvia Rosenberg, Lu Siqing, Huang Bin, and Ning Feng. She has also participated in masterclasses with Ray Chen, Christopher Poppen, Robert Chen, Cho-Liang Lin, and Maxim Vengerov. In the summer of 2016, Vivian joined the Aspen Music Festival and played in the Aspen Festival Orchestra with famous conductors, including Robert Spano, Ludovic Morlot, Hugh Wolff, James Gaffigan, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, and Vasily Petrenko.
Chris CHOI, viola
Born in Hong Kong, Chris Choi Shu-lun began studying violin at the age of six and viola at 17 under the tutelage of Wang Jiayang and Ivan Chan at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, where he completed his Master of Music Degree with full scholarships. First Prize winner of the Alice and Eleonore Schoenfeld 1st International String Competition (Chamber Music Division). Chris has performed extensively across Asia and Europe in venues such as the Royal Academy of Music, the West Dean College, the Wells Cathedral, the Central Conservatory of Music, the Shantou University, the Harvard Club of Hong Kong and the Hong Kong City Hall; and in music festivals such as the Pacific Music Festival (Japan), the Chilingirian’s Chamber Music Festival (U.K.), Musicus Fest (Hong Kong) and Hong Kong International Chamber Music Festival. He also participated in the New York String Orchestra Seminar at the Carnegie Hall in New York, as well as toured with the Asian Youth Orchestra as Assistant Principal Viola. Other performances included Walton’s Viola Concerto and Forsyth’s Viola Concerto with the Academy Symphony Orchestra, as well as solo performances at the ABRSM Prize Ceremony Presentation 2014, 2015 and 2016.
Chris has received numerous scholarships including the Y. S. Liu Foundation Scholarships, the SAR Philharmonic Scholarships, the Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Scholarships for Outstanding Merit and the ABRSM Scholarships. He also participated in masterclasses and private lessons with Yuri Bashmet, Roger Benedict and Choong-Jin Chang. Chris is now a part-time teacher at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts for the Junior Music Programme, freelancing in Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra; as well as conductor and ensemble coordinator at the Music Children Foundation Limited. He plays a 1770 Lorenzo Storioni on loan from the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust.
JIA Nan, cello
Born in Beijing, Jia Nan was admitted into the Primary School at the Central Conservatory of Music at the age of seven and learned to play the cello under the supervision of Professor Song Tao. She was admitted under early enrollment into the Bard College in the United States at the age of 16 and studied under cellist Peter Wiley. Jia Nan did her tertiary studies under full scholarship and earned her bachelor’s degree with first class honours and her master’s degree with distinction, both in music from the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (HKAPA), under the supervision of Professor Ray Wang.
Her awards include First Prize in the Youth Division of the 3rd and the 4th Cello Competitions at the Central Conservatory of Music, Third Prize in the Youth Division of the 4th National Cello Competition of China, Third Prize of the 4th International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians, Second Prize in cello and First Prize in the Chamber Division of the Schoenfeld International String Competition.
String Quartet No.1 in A minor
- Andante espressivo — Allegro
- Scherzo: Presto
String Quartet Op.76 no.4, “Sunrise”
- Allegro con spirito
- Menuetto. Allegro
- Finale. Allegro, ma non tropp
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