Dallas Symphony Orchestra Announces Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition Winners

Dallas Symphony Orchestra Announces

Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition Winners

Violinist Megan Lin takes first prize playing Tchaikovsky

Eighteenth Annual Competition for Young Performers on

Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass and Piano Held Saturday, April 27, 2019



DALLAS, TX (April 29, 2019)—The Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO) announces the winners of the eighteenth annual Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition, which took place on Saturday, April 27, 2019, at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center.

Megan Lin, 18, was awarded First Prize and $3,500 for her performance of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto No. 1. Lin will make her debut with the DSO and perform her prize-winning concerto during the Symphonie fantastique & Carmen concert on Saturday, May 31, 2019, at 7:30 PM at the Meyerson Symphony Center. Ruth Reinhardt will conduct the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. The program will also include Beethoven’s overture to Fidelio, a Dallas Premiere of Jessie Montgomery’s Starburst, for string orchestra and selections from Bizet’s Carmen and Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique. The second half of the program will include members of the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra.

Lin currently studies with Jan Mark Sloman and Jaime Laredo of the Cleveland Institute of Music. Recently, she has competed and won top prizes in multiple competitions, receiving first and second prize in the Dallas Symphonic Festival in 2016 and 2017, respectively, and was the grand prize winner for both the Vernell Gregg Young Artist Competition and the Fort Worth Symphony Young Artist Competition in 2018.

Second Prize and $2,500 was awarded to Aidan Mays, 18, who performed Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto No. 1.

Third Prize and $1,500 was awarded to Ashley Tauhert, 17, who performed Liszt’s Totentanz

Honorable Mention was awarded to Matthew Ho, 15, who performed Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto No. 1.

Finalists at the Dallas Symphony’s 2019 Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition were selected through recorded submissions and live performances of 15-minute excerpts from a concerto of their choice at the Meyerson Symphony Center. The winners were determined by a panel of judges that included Judges were: Christopher Adkins, Principal Cello, Fannie & Stephen S. Kahn Chair; Emmanuelle Boisvert, Associate Concertmaster, Robert E. & Jean Ann Titus Family Chair and Shields-Collins Bray, Principal Keyboardist for the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra.

Established in 2001 by Harrell, the Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition is open to students ages 8 -18 from Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Louisiana. The purpose of the competition is to identify and encourage the highest level of musical talent in the South Central United States. Past winners have gone on to study music at such prominent institutions as the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Eastman School of Music, The Juilliard School and the Peabody Institute in Baltimore.

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra gratefully acknowledges Rita Sue & Alan Gold and Itske & Anthony Stern for their endowed gifts in support of the Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition. Roberta Corbett, Tom Corbett (in memoriam) and Lynn Harrell also provide continuing support for the competition.

Further support for the 2019 Lynn Harrell Competition was provided by the Dallas Symphony Orchestra League and Susan Fisk.


About the 2019 Lynn Harrell Concerto Competition Winners

Megan Lin, 18, is a violinist from Plano, Texas. She currently studies with Jan Mark Sloman and Jaime Laredo of the Cleveland Institute of Music. Lin started learning the violin at the age of four and piano at age eight. Recently, Lin has competed and won top prizes in multiple competitions. She was named a 2018 Texas Young Master by the Texas Commission on the Arts. Lin has also been active in youth orchestras. She has been a member of the Dallas Asian American Youth Orchestra, the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestras and the New Conservatory of Dallas. She has led her school orchestras throughout middle school and high school as well as participating in regional and state orchestras, consistently placing in top seats including concertmaster. Megan has attended the Meadowmount School of Music in upstate New York for three summers on scholarship, as well as the Heifetz International Music Institute in 2018. In December, 2017, she was accepted as a participant of the 2017 New York String Orchestra Seminar. Outside of music, Megan enjoys reading and is interested in journalism.

Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Aidan Mays grew up in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where he was homeschooled and studied cello and piano with his parents, cellist and violist/pianist Dan and Krista Mays. Now a senior at Bentonville West High School in Bentonville, Arkansas, Mays serves as principal cellist in the Bentonville West High School Chamber Orchestra and the Ozark Philharmonic Youth Symphony Orchestra. As the winner of the 2019 Charles R. Hall Young Artist Competition, he will perform the Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto with the Springfield-Drury Symphony Orchestra in April. As an arranger and collaborative artist, Mays has arranged and performed music in a variety of genres for and with his sister, Dana Mays, violinist and mezzo-soprano. Founding member of Black Apple Music, he performs with other amateur and professional musicians in the local community.

Ashley Tauhert is currently a junior attending Plano West Senior High School. She has been playing piano since she was five and has excelled in a number of regional and state competitions, including top rankings at the TMTA Piano Performance Competition, Collin County Young Artist Competition and Dallas Symphonic Festivals. Recently, Tauhert was named a semifinalist in the 2019 Eisemann International Young Artist Competition.

In addition to her achievements on the piano, Ashley is also an accomplished violinist. She is a senior member of the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra as well as the Plano West Chamber Orchestra. For the past two years, Tauhert has also ranked in the top four violinists for the Texas All-State Symphony Orchestra. In her free time, she enjoys painting, playing volleyball with her friends and learning new music.

Born in Texas, Matthew Ho started his violin studies at age four. He has since studied with his mother Hsing-Yi Lin, Andrew Gustus, Charles Krigbaum and Jan Mark Sloman. Ho has won competitions at the local and national levels and has performed as a violinist at Carnegie Hall on five separate occasions. He won first place at the Dallas Symphonic Festival in 2013, first place at the 2013 New York International Artists Association Violin Competition, a gold medal at the 2013 American Association for the Development of the Gifted and Talented (AADGT) Festival, first place at the 2014 Duquesne Young Artist National Competition in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, first place at the American Fine Arts Festival Concerto Competition in 2015 and first place at the Alexander & Buono International String Competition in 2015. He placed second at the 2017 Fort Bend Symphony Young Artists Concerto competition, third at the 2018 Music Teachers National Association Junior Strings competition and first at the 2018 Texas American String Teachers Association Young Artists Solo Competition. Ho was featured in a special DVD concert as part of the 2012 National Suzuki Association of the Americas conference. He made his violin solo debut with the Dallas Asian American Youth Orchestra in May 2015 as the grand prize winner of its concerto competition. He has also soloed with the Ottawa Chamber Orchestra as a part of the Brian Lewis Young Artist Program in 2015 and 2016 and with the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra in 2018. Currently enrolled as a sophomore at the St Mark’s School of Texas, he also enjoys swimming, reading and ice skating. 

About the Dallas Symphony Orchestra

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra, under the leadership of Music Director Designate Fabio Luisi, presents the finest in orchestral music at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, regarded as one of the world's premier concert halls. As the largest performing arts organization in the Southwest, the DSO is committed to inspiring the broadest possible audience with distinctive classical programs, inventive pops concerts and innovative multi-media presentations. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the orchestra reaches more than 211,000 adults and children through performances, educational programs and community outreach initiatives annually. The DSO’s involvement with the City of Dallas and the surrounding region includes an award-winning multi-faceted educational program, community projects, popular parks concerts and youth programming.

The DSO has a tradition dating back to 1900 and is a cornerstone of the unique, 68-acre Arts District in Downtown Dallas that is home to multiple performing arts venues, museums and parks; the largest district of its kind in the nation. The DSO is supported, in part, by funds from the Office of Cultural Affairs, City of Dallas.