Counted “amongst the finest youth orchestras around the world,” (San Francisco Ch ...


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Cultural Center of the Philippines

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Counted “amongst the finest youth orchestras around the world,” (San Francisco Chronicle),  the award-winning Asian Youth Orchestra (AYO), recipient of Japan’s Praemium Imperiale and Nikkei Asia Prize, performs in Manila as part of its 2018 Concert Tour. The Manila leg concerts feature internationally-awarded soloists Yu-Chien “Benny” Tseng on violin and Anna Tsybuleva on piano, with conductors James Judd and Richard Pontzious conducting classical masterpieces by Rachmaninoff, Prokofiev, Wagner, Barber, Enescu and Gershwin.


CONCERT I – Thursday, August 16, 2018 | 8:00 PM

Enescu Romanian Rhapsody No. 1

Barber Violin Concerto

Rachmaninoff Vocalise

Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances

Yu-Chien Tseng, violin

James Judd, conductor

CONCERT II – Friday, August 17, 2018 | 8:00 PM

Wagner Overture to Die Meistersinger

Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet, selections

Rachmaninoff Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini

Gershwin An American in Paris

Anna Tsybuleva, piano

Richard Pontzious, conductor


Selected annually through a strict audition process, the 100-plus orchestra members chosen from a staggering 25,000 musicians, ranging in age from 17 to 27 who have auditioned for the AYO represent mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. They are together for six weeks, initially for a three-week Rehearsal Camp in Hong Kong, then for a three-week international concert tour with celebrated conductors and solo artists. [Read more…]




- Making her debut with the AYO this summer.
- Winner of the Leeds International Piano Competition in 2015.
- Winner of the International Gilels Piano Competition in Odessa, - Ukraine and in Hamamatsu, Japan in 2012.
- First CD "Fantasien" released in June 2017 received great reviews from the BBC Magazine and International Piano Magazine.
  [Read more…]


    TSENG YU-CHIEN, violin

- Winner of the International Tchaikovsky Violin Competition in 2015.
- Appeared as a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra and many others.
- Invited by Valery Gergiev to perform at the White Night Festival in St. Petersburg.
- First recital CD was recorded in Berlin in October 2016 and was released in January 2017 by Deustche Gramophone.

  [Read more…]


   JAMES JUDD, principal conductor

Principal Conductor of the Asian Youth Orchestra, the British born conductor James Judd's music directorships have included Principal Guest Conductor of the Orchestre National de Lille in France and a groundbreaking 14 years as Music Director of the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra.  His recordings with the Florida Philharmonic include an all-Walton program and Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 released by Harmonia Mundi to international acclaim. The Mahler CD was named “Recording of the Month” in Stereophile, received the Gold Medal from France’s Diapason, and was awarded the “Toblacher Komponierhauschen” at the Salzburg Festival by the Gustav Mahler Society for the best new Mahler recording of the year world-wide. [Read more…]

   RICHARD PONTZIUS, Founder / Artistic Director and Conductor

Richard Pontzious founded Hong Kong’s Asian Youth Orchestra in 1987 with the distinguished violinist, conductor and humanitarian Yehudi Menuhin. [Read more…]