Meet the Orchestra

Kristine Yang Kristine Yang
Andrew Yang Andrew Yang

Andrew Yang is a 16-year-old sophomore at Kinkaid High School. This year will mark his second as a violin for Virtuosi of Houston. He began playing violin in kindergarten and took private lessons from Rodica Gonzalez, a first violin in the Houston Orchestra. This, however, was not how he was introduced to the world of..

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Victor Xia Victor Xia

Victor Xia, 15 years old, began playing the violin when he was 10. He is a sophomore at Jersey Village High School. He has played in two samurai string orchestral concerts hosted by his teacher, Mark Multop, performed at the Good Shepherd church on numerous Sundays and performed in a festival. For the past two..

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Daniel Westerfield Daniel Westerfield

Daniel Westerfield, 18, is proud to celebrate his senior year at Jersey Village High School as a member of the Virtuosi of Houston. He began playing the bassoon at 12 years old in 6th grade. Since seventh grade, he has placed in the Region XXVII Bands every year, been a member of the All-Region Orchestra..

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Grant Velasquez Grant Velasquez

Grant Velasquez is 17 years old and a senior at Cy-Fair High School. He currently plays for a chamber orchestra under the direction of Mr. Kevin Ray. He started playing viola in 6th grade. When he was in 7th grade, he was promoted to the 8th grade chamber orchestra. He has qualified for TMEA Region..

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Steven Seiler Steven Seiler

Steven, a native Houstonian, is a sophomore at Austin High School, where he works under the direction of Mrs. Carolyn Vandiver. His private teacher is Andy Moritz. He has been playing bass since the sixth grade and made region 3 times. Steven also plays the guitar and piano, and on weekends he likes to hang..

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Sebastian Sarre Sebastian Sarre

Sebastian, age 16, is a junior at James E. Taylor High School and serves as the principal trumpet player of their wind ensemble, directed by Mike Ary, and as the trumpet head section leader. He started playing trumpet in fifth grade, but has played various instruments before at a young age. He has taken private..

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Gavin Santopetro Gavin Santopetro

Gavin Santopetro is an 18 year old bassoonist from Spring, Texas. He began playing the bassoon in sixth grade at age 11. He also plays the tenor saxophone for jazz and marching band since freshman year, and dabbles in piano, guitar, and trumpet. He is a senior at Klein Collins and made the Region Nine..

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Isabella Romano Isabella Romano

Isabella Romano, age 16, is a junior at Cypress Falls High School. She started playing the flute when she was 11 years old. Isabella is currently first chair of the Wind Symphony at Cypress Falls under the direction of Shawn McAnear. Since 2012, she has received various individual ratings of 1 in Solo and Ensemble,..

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Stewart Robison Stewart Robison

Stewart Robison, an 18 year old senior at Cypress Creek High School, is honored to begin his first year as a member of the Virtuosi of Houston and was a former member of the Houston Youth Symphony for 1 year. He’s been principal cellist in the Cy-Creek Chamber Orchestra for 3 consecutive years, now under..

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Mitchel Ramirez Mitchel Ramirez
Amaris Piedra Amaris Piedra

Amaris Piedra is a senior at Langham Creek High School who started playing the violin in 6th grade. She knew that she really loved playing the violin and after she joined Virtuosi her passion for it grew. Amaris has made region every year and always makes 1s on her solos, even qualifying for state. She..

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Megan Pham Megan Pham

Cellist, Megan Pham, is currently a senior at Klein Oak High School. She began her musical studies as a violinist at the age of 8. However, at age 11 she traded her violin for a cello and has fallen in love with it ever since. She now plans to follow her passion for music and..

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Douglas Perry Douglas Perry

Douglas Perry is a 15 year old cellist. Douglas fell in love with the cello at a Houston Symphony event at the age of two and at four began studying Suzuki cello. Since then, he played 4 years with the Parker Performing Strings, 2 years with the Johnston Sinfonia Orchestra, 2 years with the Greater..

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Jasmine Patience Jasmine Patience

Jasmine Patience is 17 years old and has been playing the violin since the age of 4. She is in 12th grade at Elkins High School. She was a member of the Region Orchestra in 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 11th and 12th grade and qualified for the All-Area Orchestra this year. She has attended the..

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Arielle Ollagnon Arielle Ollagnon

Arielle Ollagnon, 15, is a sophomore violinist at HSPVA under the direction of Dr. Brad Smith. She is thrilled to be joining Virtuosi for her first season. Arielle began violin at age 7 in Moscow, Russia with Ludmila Osterov. Since then, she has studied with Hania Gmitruk (London, England), Dan Flonta (Cape Cod, Massachusetts), Mika..

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Jonathan Mitchell Jonathan Mitchell

Jonathan Mitchell is a fifteen year old freshman at The Kinkaid School where he is a member of the orchestra and symphony orchestra under the direction of Mr. Steve Kastner. He has played the double bass for seven years. A student of Donald Howey of the Houston Symphony, Jonathan has played in the Houston Youth..

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Victor Mauriz Victor Mauriz

Victor is a 19 year old senior at Cypress Creek High School, in Houston, Texas. He has been playing cello since he was 8 years old and also plays the piano. He was a member of the Children’s Orchestra and Chamber Orchesta in Holguin, Cuba. In 2012, he continued his studies at the National School..

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Lexie Livingood Lexie Livingood

Lexie Livingood is a 16 year old junior at Austin High School, where she is involved in the school orchestra under the direction of Carolyn Vandiver. She has been playing the viola for 10 years and currently studies with Whitney Bullock. Along with Virtuosi, she is a member of the Houston Youth Symphony. She enjoys..

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Jennifer Lin Jennifer Lin

Jennifer is a talented 12-year-old musician who has played the violin for 3 years and piano for 8 years. She is currently in the seventh grade at Spillane Middle School. She was the 2015–2016 concertmaster at Spillane MS Chamber Orchestra directed by Ms. Jeannine Adams. She attended the 2016 Virtuosi of Houston Summer Workshop and..

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Tina Li Tina Li

Tina is a dedicated 12 year musician who has been playing the violin since she was 5 years old. She is currently studying under Mary Edge, a graduate of Julliard. Up until this year, she studied under Caroline Ewan (2013–2016) and Janet Kavanagh (2009–2013). She attends T. H. Rogers and is in seventh grade. She..

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Leilani Lawton Leilani Lawton

Leilani Lawton, 16, has been playing violin since age 5. She is a junior at Cypress Ranch High School and is a first violinist in their chamber orchestra. This is her second season of Virtuosi, which she absolutely loves. She has been a first violinist in the Region 27 Orchestra for the past 6 years…

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Reenu Kutty Reenu Kutty

Reenu Kutty is a thirteen year old attending Cardiff Junior High School of Katy ISD. She started playing the violin at age seven, but became more passionate about music entering Junior High. She has attended the 2016 Katy ISD Junior High Orchestra camp as well as the Virtuosi of Houston Small Ensemble Summer Workshop. Reenu..

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Haemin (Diane) Ju Haemin (Diane) Ju

Haemin (Diane) Ju, a 17 year old senior at Memorial High School, has been playing violin for 10 years. She is in her school’s top orchestra under the direction of Bingiee Shiu and Danielle Prontka and is studying under her private tutor Jisu Shin. Along with the violin, Diane has a background in piano and..

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Emme Jennings Emme Jennings

Emme Jennings, 13, is a first year Virtuosi violinist. She began violin at three with Ms. Brigette Yawn and since 2009 studied with Ms. Caroline Ewan. At four she began piano with Mrs. Barbara Sollock and since 2011 studied with Mrs. Judith Habermacher. Emme has participated in Dr. Kenneth Goldsmith’s master classes, Pastor Rick Muchow’s..

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Kevin Hulipas Kevin Hulipas

Kevin is a 16 year old violist currently attending his sophomore year at Travis High School under the direction of Sabrina Behrens. He began to study the viola at age twelve with Lauren Haley. Previously, he has also studied with violinist and orchestra director, Zoran Jasmak. Currently, he is learning under Sheldon Person of the..

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Cassandra Guevara Cassandra Guevara

Cassandra has been playing viola for 6 years and is currently a junior attending Dobie High School under the direction of Angela Badon. She has been studying with Tam Doung for approximately 2 years and was previously in the Bay Area Youth Symphony. She has made TMEA region 19 since 6th grade. Earlier this year..

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Samantha Correa Gomez Samantha Correa Gomez

Samantha Correa Gomez is a Junior at Austin High School. She has been playing violin since sixth grade. Since then, she has been able to enjoy a trip to the MidWest Clinic in Chicago and play in Carnegie Hall in New York City, as well as make region and area several times. In her free..

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Audrey Godfrey Audrey Godfrey

Audrey is a freshman at Cy-Fair High School. She started playing the piano at the age of 4, be-gan playing the violin at age 8 and recently picked up the guitar. Audrey is excited to join Virtuosi after having just moved to Houston. She has been a part of the Southern Utah Performing Arts Festival..

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Travis Gibson Travis Gibson

Travis Gibson is a thirteen year old home-schooled student from Nederland, Texas. He started playing the violin when he was three and has twice been named the Symphony League of Beaumont Outstanding Young Performer in their annual string competition. Travis has spent two summers in Maine at the New England Music Camp under the tutelage..

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Faris Ghandour Faris Ghandour

Faris Ghandour, 15 years old, is a sophomore at Cypress Falls High School. He started playing clarinet at the age of 10 and is currently studying with Marva Doucet. Faris is first chair of the school’s Wind Symphony, directed by Shawn McAnear. Since 6th grade, he has received Division One ratings at UIL Region Solo..

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Ricardo Flores Ricardo Flores

Ricardo Flores also known as Ricky is a sophomore at Cypress Woods High School, where he is a member of their Chamber Orchestra. He began playing the cello in 6th grade and also enjoys playing the violin and piano. Ricardo has attended Extreme Cello Summer Camp for the last 3 years and has exceled in..

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Priya Fink Priya Fink

Priya Fink is a junior at HSPVA and has played the flute since age 8. She has attended musical summer camps including Houston Floot Fire, Baylor University’s Summer Flute Seminar, and Interlochen Arts Camp. Priya received the Texas Music Scholar award her freshman year. That same year, she placed first in the junior division of..

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Jose Enriquez Jose Enriquez

Jose Enriquez, 17, started playing the cello at 11 while in 5th grade. He is a senior and principal cellist at Conroe High School studying under the direction of Kristen Stilley. He studies privately with Daniel Saenz, Assistant Professor of Cello at Sam Houston State University, and Louis-Marie Fardet, Cellist of the Houston Symphony. From..

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Jordan Efird Jordan Efird

Jordan Efird, a 17 year old senior attending J. Frank Dobie High School, began playing violin in 5th grade, at age 10. Having been a member of the top orchestra groups in school for all 7 years, Jordan is also a 5 year Region Orchestra and 2 year UIL Full Orchestra participant. Jordan plays the..

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Caroline Donovan Caroline Donovan

Caroline Donovan, 17, was a three year graduate from Friendswood High School and is currently taking a gap year to study music. She began playing oboe at age 11 and took up english horn at age 14. Caroline has been a member of the Houston Youth Symphony for three years. Last year, she earned the..

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Dustin Cunningham Dustin Cunningham

Dustin Cunningham, 17, is in his seventh year of playing the violin, having begun lessons at the age of 10. He is a senior attending Klein Collins High School, studying under Carlos Lara and serving as Concertmaster of the Chamber and Symphony Orchestras. Dustin studies privately with Dr. Jackson Guillen, Principal Second Violinist of the..

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Caleb Crowder Caleb Crowder

Caleb Crowder is a bassoonist from the High School for Performing and Visual Arts. He has taken lessons from many graduate students at Rice University, including Jessica Goldbaum and Sean Gordan. Currently he is studying with Conrad Cornelison, the Juilliard undergrad and Rice graduate, who now plays 2nd bassoon for the Houston Grand Opera. In..

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Clark Crookston Clark Crookston

Clark Crookston, a first year Virtuosi member, is a 16 year old junior attending Clear Creek High School in League City Texas where he is the principal bassist in the Chamber Orchestra. In addition to playing the double bass, he also enjoys playing the ukulele.In 2016, Clark was the featured performer at his High School..

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Sara Conner Sara Conner

Sara Conner is a fourteen year old freshman attending Cypress Woods High School. Sara began playing violin at the age of 10. She was placed in region orchestra in 7th and 8th grade. Sara takes private violin lessons with Mary Edge and previously from Caroline Ewan. She is currently directed by Victoria Campion and Stephanie..

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Andrew Cliburn Andrew Cliburn

Andrew Cliburn is 16 years old and has played the clarinet since he was 12. He is a sophomore at Langham Creek High School and second chair in the Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Gloria Ramirez. For the past three years, Andrew has made region band and went to area competition his freshman year…

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Elizabeth Campbell Elizabeth Campbell

Elizabeth Campbell begins her third season as harpist with Virtuosi of Houston. She has studied eight years primarily with Emily Mitchell of Stephen F. Austin State University. Ellie performed with the 2015 Music For All Honor Orchestra of America under the baton of Virtuosi Maestro Franz Krager. Participation in numerous Houston Summer Harp Festivals, American..

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Drew Cain Drew Cain
Katherine Butler Katherine Butler

Katherine Butler, 14, has been studying the violin since the age of four. Currently a student of Katrina Bobbs-Savitski, she attends Meyerland Performing and Visual Arts Middle School where she is an honor roll student and concertmistress of her orchestra. Though she doesn’t study any other instrument, she enjoys singing and has performed with the..

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Brighton Lucas Brighton Lucas

Brighton Lucas, a sixteen-year-old Junior at Cypress Ranch High School, began studying percussion at the age of thirteen through his middle school’s private lessons program. Brighton actively participates with the award winning Cy-Ranch Band in the percussion section, and is a leader on the drumline. In addition to percussion, Brighton also has been playing the..

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Zane Bernadas Zane Bernadas
Garrett Barrientos Garrett Barrientos

Garrett Barrientos, 16, is a junior at J. Frank Dobie High School. He began playing the oboe at the age of 10 and has been playing for 6 years, going into his seventh year. Garrett has had multiple placements at region competition since 6th grade and at area competition during his sophomore year. He has..

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Blake Awodu Blake Awodu

Blake Awodu is currently a member of Virtuosi of Houston for 3 years. He started on piano at age 8, and transitioned to the double bass at age 11. His primary musical influences are Francois Rabbath, Edgar Meyer, Ray Brown, Victor Wooten, Jaco Pastorios, W.A. Mozart, Scott LaFaro, Renaud Garcia-Fons, Richard Strauss, Gustav Mahler, Claude..

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Sabrina Allard Sabrina Allard

Sabrina Allard, age 16, is currently a junior at James E. Taylor High School where she is the principal French horn in the Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra. She began playing French horn at the age of 11 and has been learning to play the trombone through the Taylor Jazz Band for the last year…

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