New World Symphony conducts taping of NPR’s From the Top


New World Symphony conducts taping of NPR’s From the Top

Performing the Piano Quintet in F minor, Op.34, III. Scherzo by Johannes Brahms (1833-97) are Audrey Wright, violin 1 (From the Top alum), Julia Noone, violin 2 (From the Top alum), Kallie Ciechomski, viola (From the Top alum), Rosanna Butterfield, cello, and Christopher O’Riley, piano.

From the Top, the preeminent showcase for young musicians heard weekly on Classical South Florida, WKCP 89.7, came to New World Symphony Center to tape a radio broadcast on Apr. 8. The broadcast will be aired in May.

The popular NPR program, hosted by acclaimed pianist Christopher O’Riley, features the amazing performances and captivating personal stories of extraordinary young classical musicians from across the country.

The locally taped episode was presented by New World Symphony. The show featured two students: 13-yearold violinist Nicholas Abrahams from Highland Beach who is a student of New World Symphony Fellow Amos Fayette, and 17-year-old soprano Virginia Mims from West Palm Beach. Several New World Symphony fellows, including violinist Foster Wang, violinist Audrey Wright and violist Kallie Chiechomski, were featured in a finale performance along with host Christopher O’Riley. New World Symphony alumnus Matthew Roitstein, flute, also performed. Also featured on the show was 18-year-old Xinyi “Michelle” Zhao, originally from Guangdong, China, and currently studying at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan, who is a recipient of From the Top’s Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award.

Following the show, a group of young music students from the Community Arts Program in Coral Gables met the young musicians on the show, who gave advice on playing music. Then the young performers spent two days visiting area high school music programs and performed for the students, sharing stories from their own personal journeys in music and arts leadership. On Wednesday, Apr. 9, they visited the band program at Northwestern Senior High and on Thursday, Apr. 10, the performers visited Miami Beach Senior High.

On the evening of April 10, several New World Symphony Fellows visited the Community Arts Program in Coral Gables for a music presentation. These activities were supported in part by the William R. Kenan Jr. Charitable Trust, supporting programs that empower young people to develop talents that will brighten their lives.

From the Top may be heard locally on Classical South Florida, WKCP 89.7, on Sundays at 7 p.m.; the locally taped episode will air nationally the week of May 26.

From the Top’s founding partners are New England Conservatory and WGBH. Learn more at

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