Vandoren Announces 2016 Emerging Artist Competition Winners

Mike Lawson • News • January 25, 2016

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Shai GolanChicago, IL – Vandoren has announced the winners of the 2016 Emerging Artist Competition.  The Vandoren Emerging Artist Competition (or VEA) is for clarinetists and saxophonists between the ages of 18 and 23 performing at the very highest technical and musical level.

More details at Vandoren Emerging Artist Competition  (

Applicants applied in three categories: classical clarinet, classical saxophone, and jazz – either instrument. 
Entries are judged by top artists in each field.

Classical Clarinet: 1st: Yoonah Kim – New York, NY, 2nd: Hanlin Chen – Cleveland, OH, 3rd: Ryan Toher – Oberlin, OH, Judges: Caroline Hartig, Michael Wayne, Emil Khudyev

Classical Saxophone: 1st: Aiwen Zhang – Rochester, NY, 2nd: Jiaqi Zhao – Urbana, IL, 3rd: Gabriel Pique – Rochester, NY, Judges: Jan Baker, Nathan Nabb, Jeffrey Loeffert

Jazz: 1st: Shai Golan – New York, NY, 2nd: Michael Troy – Brooklyn, NY, 3rd: David Leon – Miami, FL, Judges: Harry Skoler, Paul Carr, Mark GrossYoonah Kim - New York

Aiwen Zhang“This year’s competition was the largest to date. We received more entries than ever before and the level of musicianship was exceptional across the board,” commented David Gould, Director of the Vandoren Emerging Artist Competition. “We are proud to have our first two women grand prize winners and I am looking forward to hearing them all play this March.”

The first place winners in each category will perform on the Vandoren Emerging Artist Concert at the 2016 Chamber Music National Festival (Music for All National Festival) in Indianapolis, IN.  They will also travel to Paris, France where they will visit the Vandoren headquarters at 56 Rue Lepic to meet with some of the most influential woodwind designers and consultants in the world.

For more information on the Vandoren Emerging Artist Competition, contact DANSR, Inc. at or 312-475-0464 or visit

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