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Elliot Kim

Elliot is a senior at Torrey Pines High School and started playing the cello at the age of seven. He is currently the principal cellist at the San Diego New Youth Orchestra and the principal cellist at Torrey Pines High School Orchestra. He began his musical career in San Jose under Janelle Paek, then studied with Jonathon Koh, a music professor at UC Berkley. Currently, he is studying with László Mező, a music professor at Chapman University. In 2012, he was the principal cellist at the El Camino Youth Symphony in San Jose and in 2013, the principal cellist at Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra. After moving to San Diego, he became the principal cellist of the Advanced Orchestra of Carmel Valley Middle School (2014-2015) and was a finalist for the Director’s Award performance. His trio won 3rd place at the 2014 VOCE competition and 2nd place at the 2013 Southern California Mozart Festival. He also received 1st place at the 2014 SYMF competition and 1st place at the 2015 MTAC Concerto Competition. He has received 2nd place in the 2015 Classics Young Artist Alive Competition and the 2015 MTAC Goodlin competition. At the 2016 Satori Strings competition he won the grand prize with a cello duet. He has won 1st place at the 2016-2017 San Diego New Youth Orchestra solo competition and received a scholarship, 1st place at the 2017 Southwestern Youth Music Festival at California State University Long Beach, 1st place at the 2017 American Fine Arts Festival International Romantic Competition, and 1st place at the 2018 Crescendo International Competition with a performance at Carnegie Hall. Played in several masterclass of László Mező Sr., who studied under Gregor Piatigorsky and Pau Casals, and was also the cello professor Emeritus at the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music Budapest Hungary, the first prize winner of the 1963 Casals Competition held in Budapest, and the cellist and founding member of the distinguished Bartók Quartet. In 1961, he collaborated with composer Zoltán Kodály to reach a pivotal agreement regarding the corrected edition of Kodály's Sonata for Cello Solo, op. 8. He has recently performed in a masterclass under Ronald Leonard, the former principal cellist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, former Piatigorsky Chair at USC Thornton School of Music, and a former professor at the Colburn School Conservatory of Music.

Outside of music, Elliot has been swimming competitively for 11 years and is on the varsity swim team at Torrey Pines High School. He is also the Regional Director and cellist of the Back to Bach San Diego branch and leads fellow musicians in events held for introducing and teaching various instruments to young children. He also teaches cello to special needs students of wide spectrum and prepares them for the biannual AMASE concert. He has been a part of AMASE (Academy of Music and Arts for Special Education) for 5 years and loves working with his special needs students.