WALNUT CREEK, CA—April 6, 2015—Taylor Alyssa Lai, a seventh grader at The Seven Hills School in Walnut Creek, has been selected for the 2015 Middle School Honors Performance Series at Carnegie Hall. She will perform as a flutist at Carnegie Hall in June 2015 with the Honors Junior Band, one of three honors ensembles, along with Choir and Orchestra. Participation in the ensemble is limited to the highest rated middle school performers from across North America and select schools internationally.
Lai auditioned for the Honors Performance Series in the fall of 2014 fall, and was accepted into the elite group after a review by the Honors Selection Board, which makes decisions based on the musician’s talent, dedication, and achievements demonstrated in the application and audition recording. Lai will join performers who hail from all fifty states, Canada, and several foreign countries for a special Saturday, June 27, 2015, performance at world-famous Carnegie Hall, a venue that marks the pinnacle of musical achievement.
According to Program Director Nancy Richardson, “Being selected to the Honors Performance Series is something each Junior Finalist should be extremely proud of accomplishing. We process thousands of nominations annually, selecting only the most talented performers. Working with these conductors and performing at Carnegie Hall is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that these student musicians never forget.”
An accomplished musician, Lai has studied music for eleven years and is a longtime student of Monica Williams through Walnut Creek Civic Arts. In addition to the flute, Lai plays the Native American flute, piccolo, piano, and harp. In 2013 and 2015, Lai received the First Class Honors with Distinction Award from the Royal Conservatory of Music, and in 2013, she earned the prestigious National Gold Medal from the Royal Conservatory of Music. Lai has earned three “Superior Rating” awards and a Command Performance Gold Medal Award from the California Music Education Association for her solo and ensemble performances, and placed first in flute in the 2013 Greater Bay Area Performing Arts Competition, sponsored by Youth Focus Inc.
Lai is the featured artist playing the Native American flute on the song “Piseco,” which appears as track five on “Mystic Places,” a 2013 CD release written and produced by the San Francisco duo Phoenix Rising. “Piseco” was recently nominated for Best World Song by the Hollywood Music in Media Association (HMMA). Lai is president and founder of the Bay Area Equestrian Club, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that offers a summer equine veterinary camp for students interested in veterinary medicine. In addition to offering exclusive equine-related experiential workshops, Bay Area Equine Vet Camp incorporates music therapy for equines and includes “Mystic Places” in its musical repertoire. [www.baeclub.org]
In response to her selection as a Junior Finalist, Lai said, “I am grateful to be a Junior Finalist and glad to have the opportunity to learn from world-renowned conductors and work with other Junior Finalists. I can’t wait to get a taste of New York City, and I feel happy to be able to share what I learn from this experience with my community here in the Bay Area.”
The Saturday, June 27, 2015, performance is open to the public. Tickets will be available for purchase sixty days prior to the performance through the Carnegie Hall box office at www.boxofficeticketsales.com.
The Honors Performance Series was created to showcase accomplished individual high school and middle school performers on an international level by allowing them to study under master conductors and perform in the celebrated venue Carnegie Hall. Learn more by visiting www.honorsperformance.org.