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Seven Hills senior earns first chair placement in Regional Orchestra

Seven Hills senior Max Yuan has recently been named first chair for viola in the Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) Southwest Regional Orchestra. After being notified that he was eligible for a leadership role in the OMEA, Yuan auditioned for the position in early November and recently learned he was named first chair. The first chair designation, in orchestral terms, refers to a position of distinction that usually goes to a highly skilled musician who also exhibits leadership and a command of music dynamics and technique.

Yuan will lead his section at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 18, at Hamilton High School. The orchestra will play the first movement of Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade,” Copland’s “Hoe-Down,” the second movement of Kalinnikov’s “Symphony No. 1 in G Minor,” and Brahms’ “Symphony No. 2 in D Major.” The concert is free and open to the public.

“Max is an amazing musician, and a stellar student and athlete!” said Seven Hills instrumental music teacher John Rising. “Receiving an honor like this is quite an achievement and shows the pay-off of hard work and discipline.”

Yuan’s practice regimen includes weekly sessions with a private viola teacher and three, hour-long rehearsals with the Cincinnati Symphony Youth Orchestra. On his own, Yuan tries to practice two hours per week. Yuan, also captain of the boys varsity tennis team and the head of Seven Hills’ Mu Alpha Theta Club and Science Olympiad Club, said he is looking forward to leading his section in one of Ohio’s most prestigious youth orchestras.

“I am excited to lead a group of excellent violists through some very tough repertoire,” said Yuan. “Hopefully, we master the music over just three rehearsals and contribute to a successful concert!”