Among the Top Ten are five pianists – a traditionally strong area since the competition began three years ago – two violinists, a rap singer and a rock singer/musician. There are three returnees to the concert list from previous years.
“The finalist list once again highlights the great skill and diversity of musical talent that we have here among young people in the UAE,” said James Mullan, co-founder of WhichSchoolAdvisor and a judge in the competition. “The concert is designed to be a celebration of that diversity and skill. It’s always a magical event!”
To prepare for the concert all of the finalists will be invited to attend a special workshop with professional musician Abbo Abbondandolo who will coach and advise the youngsters on how to deliver the best performance on the day.
Two professional musicians are serving as judges of the competition Adam Long who is a saxophonist and is also Managing Director of the Sole Agency which recruits professional musicians for events in the UAE. Rivaan Mager is the founder of the EnSemble Choir which is for children with special needs. The Choir will be performing at the concert as well. It will be hosted by George and Kitch who present the breakfast show on Dubai 92.
A new feature of the competition this year is the Rising Star where the judges choose one of the younger contestants who they believe could be a star of the future. The organisers are also delighted that Shoko Umezawa, the winner of last year’s competition has also agree to perform at the concert.
Note: The final award, the Popular Award, is still very much in play. Users can vote, share the entries on social media, and watch the videos - all of which count towards the entry's final score.
To choose and vote for your favourite, go here: https://whichschooladvisoruae.us.launchpad6.com/entries
The top ten finalists are:
Jude Eid – vocalist, Jumeirah College
Shou Ishikawa – violin, Al Bateen Academy
Petra Keeney – piano, North London Collegiate School
Emily Linge – vocalist, Kings' Al Barsha
Yidi Ma – piano, Nord Anglia School, Dubai
Ali Nasri – piano, Al Mawakeb School
Rafael Mary Rispal – piano, LFI Aflek
Sam Sukendro – piano, American Community School
Ayami Umezawa – violin, Dwight School
Daren Tan – marimba, Jumeirah College
And the Rising Star is:
Kaiyang Hu – piano, Brighton College Abu Dhabi