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Youth piano prodigy and renowned violinist to headline local holiday concert next Saturday

National Chamber Ensemble 2022 holiday cheer concert (courtesy of National Chamber Ensemble)

(Updated at 9:20 p.m.) The annual holiday concert from Arlington-based National Chamber Ensemble will feature two talented guest musicians, including a 13-year-old piano prodigy.

The concert is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. next Saturday, Dec. 16, at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington (4444 Arlington Blvd). It will open with the holiday classic “Sleigh Ride” by Leroy Anderson, culminating in a festive carol sing-along toward the end.

General admission tickets are priced at $20 for students and $40 for all other attendees.

Headlining the event is Grammy-nominated violinist Dylana Jenson, 62, who in 1978 became the first American woman and the youngest musician — at age 17 — to win a silver medal in the prestigious Russian International Tchaikovsky Competition for young-adult pianists, violinists and cellists.

Joining Jenson is 13-year-old piano prodigy William Hsieh from Bethesda. Last week, Hsieh won first-prize in the National Chamber Ensemble (NCE) annual young artist competition.

The competition attracts pianists aged 12 to 19 from the D.C. area and offers three prizes. The top winner receives a scholarship, a crystal trophy and the chance to perform with the ensemble at its Dec. 16 concert.

“We were so impressed with this year’s outstanding talent,” NCE Artistic Director Leo Sushansky said in a press release. “The winner, William Hsieh, really stood out with such dynamic playing [that] exhibited lots of personality and refinement.”

“He will bring added excitement to the evening, which I am sure will be one of the highlights of the concert,” Sushansky continued.

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