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Meet some of our AIMC Prize Winners and Ambassadors

Spring 2021 Winners and Ambassadors

Spring 2021 Winners and Ambassadors


Lulin Cai


Cai Lulin is a 12 year old student studying at the Shenzhen Arts School and is a lively and cheerful girl under the tutelage of Jin Sheng. She enjoys piano, singing, dancing, and calligraphy. Lulin started learning piano at the age of 5, participated in numerous piano competitions, and obtained excellent results. In 2015, She received bronze medal at the National Finals of the China Children’s Little Golden Bell Music Competition. In 2016, she participated at the 10th Guangdong Division Outstanding Artistic Talent Competition, as well as the Guangdong Division of the Second Southern “Chopin” International Piano Competition, both receiving First Prize.

From 2017-2018, she has received prizes at competitions such as the 11th China-Singapore International Music Competition, Guangzhou Division of the PIARA International Piano Competition in Japan, Sino-Russian International Youth Art Exchange, 8th Steinway National Youth Piano Competition Guangzhou Division, and many others.


Yaxin Deng


Yaxin Deng is a piano student of Jin Sheng at the Shenzhen Arts School. She has participated at the 18th Hong Kong Asian Piano Open Competition, winning First Prize; Group E, Third Prize; Final-Elementary Group of Chinese Works; and Second Prize; Final-Free Selection Group E. She won the Elite Gold Award at the 2nd Hong Kong International Music Festival in the Children Piano Group, Second Prize and “Liszt Memorial Award” at the Hong Kong International Piano Open Division (Chinese Works Elementary Group) and Category D Open Division. In addition, she received First Prize in the Group B of the 10th Star River Chopin International Youth Piano Competition.


Olivia Dong


“Hi, my name is Olivia Yin Dong. My middle name “Yin” means music in Chinese, so I was expected to love music since I was born. My mother told me that when I was a baby, I liked dancing to music. I love playing the piano and writing, and I think piano is the best instrument, so I chose it. 


Piano is my dearest friend and I talk to her with my fingers, my soul, and my true thoughts. That makes me happy, as it’s like she knows what I want to say. She gave me answers in a romantic way, music. I took her words to make my music better, and I’m happy that we get along. Thanks for piano and music. They make my life interesting.”


Jedidiah Kim


Jedidiah is a third grade student at Mariners Christian School. He enjoys playing soccer, golf and swimming. His passion is playing piano and loves to read autobiographies of composers. He likes to travel and learn about history.


Jedidiah has won first prize in the International Piano Competition in Austria and performed at Ambassador Auditorium in Pasadena known as "The Carnegie Hall of the West" at Harvest Rock Church. Jedidiah currently lives in Irvine, California with his parents. 


Allen Lee


My name is Allen and I’m from California. I’m a fifth grade student at Myford Elementary school. My hobbies are various such as baseball, golf, hip hop dancing, and listening to music.


I started playing the piano at the age of five with my sister, and later began learning the violin at the age of nine. I grew up liking violin a lot, especially those popular songs played on violin. I really enjoy playing the violin and in the future, I hope I could become a really awesome violin player.

Kate Verhagen head shot 5-10-2021.JPG

Kate Verhagen


Kate Verhagen was born and raised in Southern California and she is a bright, hardworking

freshman in high school. Kate has studied piano since she was seven and has made tremendous

progress over the years. She passed her CM Level 10 twice in her 7th grade and 9th grade. In addition to piano, Kate has been an active dancer and competitive figure skater since she was six years old.


Unfortunately, Kate has not been able to skate in the last 1.5 years due to an injury and the

ongoing pandemic and she therefore turned her attention to music, which is one of her other

passions beyond skating. Kate is a straight A student in school and wants to be a doctor in the

future. In her spare time, she enjoys playing board games with her family, reading, watching

Korean dramas, and hiking on one of the many beautiful Southern California beaches.


Alex Wang


Alex Wang was born in Irvine, California, on March 28th, 2008. He is currently a middle school student at Sierra Vista Middle School. He began playing the piano at the age of 5. He won his first 1st place award at a local festival after playing the piano for 6 months. During his CM exams, he got excellence in all the categories and had participated in the State Convention recital. Since then, he has won several awards. At 8 years old, he won first prize at the SYMF Music Festival and was able to perform in front of an audience at the awards recital. At age 10 he began studying under Maxine Gong.

He won the Grand Prize at the Grand Prize Virtuoso International Music Competition earlier last year. These successes allowed him to enjoy music more and more over time. Alex also participated in the Irvine Conservatory of Music’s Chamber Music Program, performing at

multiple Senior Centers. Alex enjoys music overall, and plays the cello as well. In his spare time, he enjoys playing chess and going swimming.


Luyin Zhang


Luyin Zhang, a freshman student in Professor Tairan Zhen’s studio at Harbin Conservatory of Music, is now pursuing a BM degree in viola performance. Luyin started playing violin at the age of 7. In 2019, Luyin switched to viola and studied with Hongdou Guo and Keju Wang at Xi'an Conservatory of music. In 2020, Luyin was accepted to the Harbin Conservatory of Music majoring in viola performance. In March 2021, she participated in the Honors Student Concert of the String and Woodwinds Department at Harbin Conservatory. Luyin participated in various solo and ensemble performances. In May 2021, Luyin won the First Prize at the 2021 Artista International Music Competition, Professional Musicians Category.

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