Local 10-year-old wins international piano competition

GETZVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) – A 10-year-old from Getzville recently won an international competition. Eric Yang came in first place at the American Protégé International Piano and String Competition.

“I was so excited,” he said.

The 5th grader at Casey Middle School in Williamsville has always had a passion for music.

He started learning how to play when he was 4-years-old. His father, Dr. Gage Yang, said even when his son was a toddler, he liked classical music. Dr. Yang said his son would even request to listen on it on the radio in the car.

By the age of 6, Yang started going to the Royal Music Academy in Clarence. His instructor, Dr. Violeta Arakelova helped him hone his skills. She says she knew from the beginning that there was something special about him.

Yang normally practices the piano for 1 hour a day. However, he has started playing for 3 hours a day. He’s preparing for upcoming performances and competitions. Yang plans on competing in the Chopin International Piano Competition in March. He is also scheduled to play at Carnegie Hall twice this spring.

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