Two talented young pianists have been awarded the 2019 DMMF Alice Cole Piano Scholarship in partnership with Guardian Trust.
Fifteen-year Ashani Waidyatillake and 18-year-old Jessica Chi both received the $1,000 scholarships for their exception performances at a recent recital in Auckland.
Ashani says the funds will help her attend masterclasses and festivals, which will be essential in helping her improve her skills in music.
In the last three years she has achieved great success in competitions throughout New Zealand including winning the New Zealand Youth Piano Competition and the biennial Wallace National Junior Piano Competition. As well as being a solo performer, she enjoys chamber music and was the pianist in the award winning Trio Espoir. She is an accomplished violinist.
Jessica says she is honoured and grateful to receive the Alice Cole scholarship which will contribute to a summer music course in Nelson.
“This award means a great deal to me, an affirmation to my self-value and ability. It encouraged me and also made me more confident and enthusiastic about the future development of my performing career.”
The year 13 student has gained several first and second places in Auckland Performing Arts piano Competitions and in 2018 came third place at the Performing Arts Competitions Association of New Zealand National Young Performer competition. In 2017, she attained the Royal Schools of Music London LTCL Diploma with distinction.