VC Rising Star Christian Li Named Melbourne Symphony Orchestra's Young Artist in Association

The 13-year-old violinist will strengthen his existing relationship with the Australian orchestra

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Melbourne is Li's hometown, having made his debut with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (MSO) in 2019.

"I felt very excited when I heard the news," Li told The Violin Channel. "It’s a great privilege to be part of MSO’s Artistic Family and have the opportunity to work with the orchestra more."

In 2018, Li became the youngest-ever winner of the Menuhin Competition when he was awarded the joint Junior First Prize at age 10. Since then, he has also become the youngest artist ever to sign with Decca Classics; his first recording on the label — a performance of Vivaldi's Four Seasons — was in collaboration with the MSO.

Previously, at the age of 9, Christian won First Prize in the violin category of the 2017 Young Artist Semper Music International Competition and performed at Carnegie Hall in New York in the American Protégé Showcase 10-year Anniversary concert. In 2014, he won First Prize in the "Golden Beijing" violin competition in China.

Christian performs on the 1737 ex-Paulsen Guarneri del Gesù violin, on loan from a generous benefactor, and uses a bow by François Peccatte. He studies under Dr. Robin Wilson, Head of Violin at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne.

Li sees his new residency as an opportunity to soak up as much wisdom from the MSO's players as possible. "I most look forward to learning and collaborating with members of the orchestra, and performing in concerts with them," he said. "I learn so much every time I play with them."

Li also enjoys the flexible and supportive attitude of the orchestra. "It’s always fun and relaxed in rehearsals where we can try different musical ideas," he said. "I first performed with them when I was 11 at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, and I have also recorded my debut album with the orchestra. They have been so supportive and encouraging. I get a real buzz every time I’m surrounded by the tremendous sound of the whole orchestra."

Christian Li's debut album, "The Four Seasons," is out now on Decca Classics.