Music The Guild Scholarships: Awards of Distinction
Applications for the Guild Scholarship Competition are currently CLOSED for Spring 2021
See below for our finalists!
Applications for the annual Guild Scholarship competition were due by February 1st, 2021 and are for fall 2021. Applications and auditions were reviewed in the order received and considered until each category was filled.
What is the Guild Scholarship?
The Guild Scholarship is a highly prestigious music scholarship for exceptional young musicians in the amount of up to $10,000 per year for music studies at Westmont. The competition is funded by The Guild for Music at Westmont and judged by our faculty members Matthew Roy, visiting assistant professor of music, Daniel Gee, assistant professor of music, Steve Butler, professor of music, Steve Hodson, professor of music, Han Soo Kim, associate professor of music, Michael Shasberger, music department chair and Adams professor of music and worship and others. For information about becoming a Guild member, please contact the Westmont Music Department at (805) 565-6040.
Ninth Annual Instrumental Guild Information and Participants
The Ninth Annual Westmont Music Guild event was held on Saturday evening, February 27th and will be released via a video recording on Westmont's Vimeo showcase page on March 5 at 7pm. This years Guild winner was violinist Sophia Chan. Congratulations to Sophia and to all participants and thank you for joining us for this remarkable event!
[Video Coming Soon]
2021 Guild Scholarship Participants
Gabriel Kong was born and raised in the Bay Area, and attends the Gilroy Early College Academy. Starting at the age of four, his mother started him on violin lessons along with two of his older siblings. For him, the violin has become a means of creative expression and a doorway to life-changing experiences like symphony tours around the world and performances in historic concert halls. His favorite parts about playing the violin are sharing his music with others, uplifting them through his music, and being able to walk around while playing to keep his blood flowing (that was actually the deciding factor between violin and piano). In addition to the violin, Gabriel enjoys soccer, cycling, and running, and plans on pursuing a career in internal medicine with a specialization in hematology/oncology.
David Shiang is a senior at Oak Park High School, in Oak Park, CA. He previously studied piano with Mrs. Shirley Hsieh, and is currently under the guidance of Mr. Mark Richman. He has won awards in the MTAC Contemporary Music Festival, Southern California Junior Bach Festival, and the Vocalists, Orchestral Instrumentalists, and Chamber Ensembles competition (VOCE). In 2019, David won the Young Artist’s Competition and performed Felix Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto No. 1, Movement 1, with the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra as a soloist. Besides piano, he has sung with his school choir, and played the violin as a member of the Conejo Valley Youth Orchestra. David is currently a tenor in the Oak Park High School Jazz Choir. He has also performed alongside the Southern California Vocal Ensemble as well as the California All State Choir. Outside of music, David enjoys volunteering at church, reading books, and playing basketball. David is grateful to Westmont for the opportunity to be part of the Guild Competition.
Sophia Chan is a high school senior from Loma Linda, California. She began studying violin at age 5 under the tutelage of April Losey and is currently in the private studio of Dr. Sarah Vendsel Dudas. Sophia has enjoyed performing for various events in her community such as the Loma Linda University’s 27th Annual Children’s Hospital Gala, an Associates of the Redlands Bowl meeting, and multiple church services. Sophia’s love for orchestra was first sparked when she joined the Claremont Young Musicians Intermezzo Orchestra in 2015, and for chamber ensembles at the Chamber Music Workshop at the Los Angeles Suzuki Institute. Sophia is currently co-concertmaster of the Claremont Young Musicians Orchestra (CYMO), which she has been a member of since 2016. In May of 2019, CYMO performed at Walt Disney Concert Hall with violinist Bing Wang as part of the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s “Sounds About Town” series. In her free time, Sophia likes to bake, crochet, and wear vintage clothing.
Pianist, Jesse Nieman, 17, is currently attending Portland Community College for his third year. He began piano lessons in South Korea ten years ago, studied under Pauline Eidemiller upon his return, and since began studying under Dr. Julia Lee. Jesse’s most recent accomplishments include winning the MTNA state senior piano duet competition, Beaverton Symphony Young Artist Competition and 2nd place at the Ten Grand Piano competition. Jesse has participated actively in and won many OMTA festivals, as well as a scholarship from the Piano Santa Foundation. He won the audience award as a finalist in the PYP piano concerto competition as well as winning second place in the Jean Williams scholarship competition. Jesse has been a violinist of the Portland Youth Philharmonic for 7 years, he was the concertmaster in the Portland Youth Conservatory Orchestra’s 2019-2020 season. He has performed in masterclasses with Hans Boepple, Dr. Jane Magrath, Jefrey LaDeur, Denes Varjon, Dr. Nicholas Reynolds, Dorothy Fahlman, Angie Zhang, Bobby Mitchell, and Andrea Klein. He is currently teaching piano to four students as well as two violin students. Jesse is very active with his music and during the COVID pandemic produced multiple music videos both individually as well as in collaborations with peers. He also plays frequently for his church, retirement homes, private parties, various organizations, and accompanying other musicians.
Joshua Wang, age 17 is a senior at Maranatha High School in Pasadena, California. His musical studies began at the age of four by playing the piano taught by his grandmother and at age six playing the cello taught by his mother, Dr. Elizabeth Su. At age 12, Joshua debuted his first concerto with Lake Avenue Chamber Orchestra playing the Johann Christian Bach Cello Concerto in C minor. As an active soloist and chamber musician, Joshua frequently performs at the Colburn School. Furthermore, he performs every Saturday at Arcadia Methodist Hospital for admitted patients. Joshua has performed with orchestras such as Colburn Sinfonietta, Colburn Chamber Orchestra, Claremont Young Musician Orchestra, Lake Avenue Chamber Orchestra, All Southern Honor Orchestra (SCSBOA), and Maranatha High School Honor Orchestra. As a student of Dr. Richard Naill, Joshua is a merit scholarship recipient at the Colburn School and Colburn’s Ed and Mari Edelman Chamber Music Institute Honor Chamber Music Scholarship Program. His chamber music coaches include Maya Jasper, Minor Wetzel, Jonah Sirota, and Dr. Duane Funderburk. Besides cello, Joshua is a gifted artist specializing in painting portraits. A student of Moses Der Movsesian, Joshua enjoys painting portraits of his friends and delivering them as a surprise gift. Besides his artistic roots, Joshua is the chief fundraising ofcer of Agape Belize Cure, a non profit organization bringing medical relief to Belizeans. He made two trips to Belize to serve over 2000 patients. Joshua wishes to pursue his interest in studying the molecular and cellular biology and cello performance.
Ethan Dempsey, attends Porter High School in Porter, Texas. He is in his Senior year at age 18. He has studied the flute for 6.5 years, and studies privately with Amy Wiggs. In Ethan’s spare time he likes to read, work out, and play basketball.
Previous Guild Competition Winners
Guild competition winner and pianist, from Colorado Springs.
Guild competition winner and cellist, from Culver City, California and a 2020 Westmont College graduate.
Guild competition winner and violinist, from Carlsbad, California and a 2018 Westmont College graduate.
Guild competition winner and cellist, from Thousand Oaks, California and a 2018 Westmont College graduate.
Guild competition winner and violinist, from Grand Rapids, Michigan and a 2016 Westmont College graduate.
How do I qualify for the Guild Scholarship?
1) Only entering prospective students (first-year and transfer) are eligible for consideration. The next Music Guild Scholarship Event will be February 27, 2021 for voice and February 28, 2021 for instrumentalists.
2) Students interested in being considered for the Guild competition must check the box on the music scholarship application form when they submit it indicating their availability to participate in the event (see exception for international students below). Invitations will typically be extended within two weeks of the completion of the academic admissions process and a formal music audition (either live or via recording).
3) Applicants must have submitted their completed Westmont Admissions Application to the Office of Admissions, and performed or submitted a qualifying audition prior to February 1, 2020. Only students who are deemed qualified for an academic merit scholarship will be eligible as finalists. Invitations to the competition are extended as qualifying students are identified. The competition will be considered closed when a full program is confirmed. Early submission of all materials is highly recommended.
4) The 2021 event will be held with a combination of live and online formats as deemed feasible. Participants will have their choice of format based on health and safety considerations.
5) All finalists must submit the information requested within 1 week of their invitation, or sooner if the invitation is extended late in February. Finalists will be invited as soon as they are deemed to be qualified to give them as much time to arrange for travel as possible. Finalists who do not provide information in a timely way may be disqualified at the discretion of the faculty.
There is no additional application process or form for this competition beyond the regular scholarship application. Finalists will be notified if their audition and admission status merits an invitation to the Guild Scholarship Competition. Winners of the competition will have until May 1st to confirm their acceptance of the Guild Scholarship or any other Westmont merit based award.