Orchestre competition, first prize in the New York Concerti Sinfonietta Shining Stars Competition, silver medal in the 2014 Young Maestro Competition, first prize in the VIVO International Competition, winner of the 2016 Bergen Philharmonic Concerto Competition. Recently, Sarah was accepted as a semi-finalist in the prestigious 2017 Cooper International Violin Competition, the 2017 Blount Slawson Young Artists Competition, as well as the 2016 Il Piccolo Violino Magico (“The Magical Little Violin Competition”) in Italy, and received the award for “Best Virtuoso Piece”.
Additionally, for five years, Sarah studied at the Manhattan School of Music Pre-College with Elizabeth Faidley, where she was the recipient of the Carl Owen Memorial Scholarship Fund as well as a previous recipient of the Kate Bamberger Memorial Scholarship Fund. She served as the principal second violinist in MSM’s Philharmonic Orchestra (2016-17), as well as concertmaster in Symphony (2015-16) and Repertory (2014-15) Orchestras. She placed alternate of the 2013 Manhattan School of Music’s Concerto Competition. In 2014, Sarah won the MSM Concerto Competition Symphony Orchestra Division and became the youngest winner in the school’s history; then, in 2016, Sarah won the MSM Concerto Competition Philharmonic Orchestra Division, again as the youngest winner in the school’s history. In 2015, she was chosen by MSM to give an honors solo recital at Old Westbury Gardens, and in 2016, Sarah’s chamber group at MSM won Honorable Mention in the 2016-17 Chamber Music Competition at MSM for ages 15 and older.
Sarah has performed as a soloist with several orchestras, including the Manhattan String Orchestra, the Island Symphony Orchestra, the North Shore Symphony Orchestra, New York Concerti Sinfonietta, the Manhattan School of Music’s Symphony Orchestra, the Union City Philharmonic Orchestra, Ensemble 212, Indiana University Informatics Philharmonic, the Bravura Philharmonic Orchestra, and the New York Chamber Players Orchestra. In her performance with the MSM Symphony Orchestra and the New York Chamber Players Orchestra, Sarah performed on the 1742 ex-David Guarneri del Gesu kindly loaned to her from Florian Leonhard Fine Violins. Last summer, Sarah competed in Il Piccolo Violino Magico in Italy and performed with the Accademia D’Archi Arrigoni with various pieces including the Bach Double Concerto with violinist Lorenza Borrani. Sarah was also chosen to perform the Vivaldi Double Concerto with the Summit Music Festival’s Youth Ensemble Orchestra, and was chosen to perform in the concert featuring winners of the 2nd Annual Korea Competition and other exceptional young artists. In March 2016, Sarah performed the entire Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Washington Heights Chamber Orchestra as a guest artist, and in 2017, the entire Tchaikovsky Concerto with the Bergen Philharmonic.
In addition to competing, Sarah is a guest of the Tiwanaku Project of Oruro, Bolivia, which helps children in Bolivia with severe untreated burns receive professional medical help. In June 2017, she performed in the Project’s 10th Anniversary Benefit Concert. Since 2018, Sarah has become a volunteer for Music & Memory, an organization dedicated to helping Alzheimers patients through the power of music. A member of Back to Bach, Sarah regularly performs with colleagues for young elementary students. Sarah recently began teaching young beginner violinists how to play violin. Recently, the Juilliard Pre-College Orchestra performed in a Centennial Gala concert at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall under the baton of Robert Spano, and soloist Emanuel Ax.
In a review of her performance of the Mendelssohn Concerto with the New York Concerti Sinfonietta Orchestra, the Epoch Times reported, “Sarah played with a radiant innocence at a ferocious clip… She has fleet fingers, a rich tone, and a warm vibrato…she is a tantalizing glimpse of potential future greatness” (Sherwin). Recently, in a masterclass with Sarah Chang, Violinist.com reported: “Sarah played the finale movement of the Tchaikovsky concerto, with ferocity and musical maturity.” (Smith).
Sarah has performed in several masterclasses and lessons with artists Ray Chen, Donald Weilerstein, Vivian Hornik Weilerstein, Rebecca Henry, Li Lin, Richard Lin, Peter Winograd, Aaron Rosand, Brandon Vamos, Charlie Siem, Laura Frautschi, Sarah Chang, Julien Zufferey, Nicholas Mann, Susie Park, Vadim Gluzman, and Stefan Jackiw.
Sarah has participated in the 2015 Indiana University Summer String Academy, where she studied with pedagogue Mimi Zweig, and the 2016 Summit Music Festival Aaron Rosand Intensive Program. In 2017, she attended the Heifetz International Music Institute, where she studied with David and Linda Cerone, Silvia Marcovici, Mihaela Martin, and Ani Kavafian. During her time at the Institute, Sarah was given the honor to play alongside violinist Daniel Bae. Together, they performed multiple times, including “Stars and Stripes Forever” (Sousa/Dukov) on the news channel WHSV3 ABC’s 1on1 Interview representing the Heifetz Institute, as well as performing the National Anthem in Nationals Stadium in Washington D.C. in the Chicago Cubs vs. Washington Nationals baseball game. In 2018, she studied at the Aspen Music Festival and School as a full session student in the studio of Mr. Robert Lipsett, and this summer, she will be studying at AMFS under both Mr. Lipsett and Mr. Donald Weilerstein.
Other than the violin, Sarah enjoys many other subjects, especially creating art, winning a Gold Medal on her work "A Thousand Words” and honorable mention on her work "Dream Crane" in the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition, and first place in the drawing category of the Arline Thomas Urban Bird Literacy/Art Contest. She currently studies art with Helen Zhang. One of her pastel paintings was featured in Mineola Library in 2018. Sarah was also a previous competitive swimmer on teams including the Long Island Aquatic Club (LIAC), YMCA Cross Island Barracudas, Our Lady of the Snows, and Flushing Meadows Corona Park among others. In her freshman year of high school, Sarah was a member of her school's Varsity Fencing team. She is currently a principal honor roll student at her high school. In her free time, Sarah loves running, hiking, playing badminton, reading, and spending time with her two dogs, Mocha and Willow.
SARAH MA, VIOLIN
Sarah Ma, 16, is currently a student at the Juilliard Pre-College Division under Masao Kawasaki as a recipient of the Beggs-Dethier Scholarship. Sarah has won numerous competitions including grand prize in the Union City Young Artist Competition, first prize in the 2019 North Shore Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition, first prize in the 2019 Island Symphony Orchestra Competition and recipient of the Dr. Charles F. Gouse Scholarship, first place in the New York Chamber Players Music Competition, first prize in the Alexander Buono International Competition, first prize in the “Music of Eastern Europe” division of the Great Composers Competition, first prize in the East Coast International Competition, grand prize in the 2017 Ensemble 212 Competition, gold prize in the 8th Annual Bravura Philharmonic Orchestra Young Artists Concerto Competition, first prize in the 2012 Le Petit