ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra has announced flutist Abi Middaugh and violinist Lily Sullivan as winners of its 2021 Young Artist Competition.
Initially, twelve finalists competed on Dec. 11, 2021, at Eastern Michigan University, with the winners receiving a chance to perform at one of the A2SO’s youth concerts in 2022.
Middaugh will perform the first movement of Carl Nielsen’s Concert for Flute and Orchestra, while Sullivan will perform the opening movement of Camille Sint-Saens’s Violin Concerto No. three in B minor.
“I’m so glad that I could be a part of the Young Artist Competition this year,” said competition jury chair and A2SO concertmaster Aaron Berofsky. “The performances were wonderful; remarkably sophisticated and beautiful for students at such a young age. I was impressed with the variety of repertoire and instruments represented, all played at an amazing level.” Berofsky said.
Middaugh is from Ypsilanti and is a senior in high school at the Early College Alliance at Eastern Michigan University, where she is studying flute with Kelly McDermott in Ann Arbor.
She plans on studying flute performance to become an orchestral flutist. She is currently a member of the University of Michigan’s Youth Symphony Orchestra, Eastern Michigan University’s Wind Symphony, and principal flute of Interlochen Art Camp’s 2021 World Youth Symphony Orchestra.
Middaugh took home first prize at the Washtenaw Community Concert Band Concerto Competition in 2020 and the North Dakota State University National Music Competition in 2021.
Sullivan is a merit scholarship fellow at the Music Institute of Chicago’s Academy. The center is for advanced pre-college musicians. She studies violin with Grigory Kalinovsky and is a member of the Dando Piano Trio at the music institute of Chicago.
Sullivan was awarded Honorable Mention in the 2020 Association of the Louisville Orchestra Young Artist Competition. She won the Ladonna Dingledine first prize of the 2021 Muncie Symphony Orchestra Young Artists competition, first prize in age group C of the Bellegrande International Music Competition. She was also chosen as a Young Laureate of the 2021 Chicago International Violin Competition.
“I was reminded of what a privilege it is to make music before a live audience,” Sullivan said. “Performing in this competition alongside such talented musicians was an honor. I am very grateful for the opportunity to share the stage with the Ann Arbor Symphony.”