Austin is a junior at Columbia University currently studying Economics, Political Science, and Sustainable Development. He founded the Bernards Ensemble in 2016 and has actively participated in the ensemble since. He studied violin and viola under Bela Horvath of the Manhattan School of Music for over a decade and has been involved in several orchestras, both as their concertmaster and as a solo performer. Austin also won awards for solo and chamber music performances in prestigious competitions such as the Coltman Chamber Music Concert at UT Austin, the Grand Prize Virtuoso Competition in Rome, the Sinfonietta Nova Young Concert Artists Competition, and the YWCA New York International Music Competition.
At school, Austin is a senior editor for the Columbia Journal of Politics & Society (JPS), an editor for the Columbia Undergraduate Law Review, and an ESG analyst for the Columbia University Impact Investing Network (CUIIN). He hopes to attend law school after college and pursue a career in environmental justice law. Aside from his academic and musical pursuits, Austin is an avid fan of soccer and enjoys watching indie films in his free time.
Sean is currently studying Finance and Consulting at Emory University. He has played the cello since the age of 7, performing as a soloist and member of numerous orchestras. He has performed in performance halls such as Merkin Concert Hall, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and Wiener Musikverein in Austria. At Emory University, Sean is part of the Asian Culture Club, Korean American Student Association, and iMentor program.
Kay is a graduate student at Northwestern University. After completing her bachelor's degree in communications at Northwestern, she is returning for an MS in creative enterprises. She also studied business, marketing, and music technology. She has been involved with music since the age of 7 and has since learned piano, flute, oboe, guitar, ukulele, and a little bit of cello. At school, she began singing in a cappella and DJing. She has opened shows for artists such as Flo Milli and Aminé. In addition to music, she loves playing basketball, going to the gym, watching tv, exploring cities, and playing games with friends.
Jessica is currently studying Hotel Administration at the Cornell Hotel School. She has played the violin since 1st grade, and enjoys cooking and the arts. During high school, she participated in her school orchestra as well as the New Jersey Youth Symphony. At Cornell, Jessica is now a part of several student organizations, and hopes to continue violin.
Alexandra is a freshman at Columbia University. She has been under the tutelage of Lorraine Nubar and Cynthia Sanner of The Juilliard School and most recently under Martha Elliot of Princeton University. Alexandra has also studied at the Académie Internationale D'eté de Nice in Nice, France. She was recently cast in her first professional opera with the regional opera company Light Opera of New Jersey in their production of Die Fledermaus and has been showcased in their pre-professional showcase Basking in Light. Having a passion for connecting with others through music, Alexandra is thrilled to be a member of the Bernards Ensemble.
Daniel is a freshman at Northeastern University. He has been playing the piano for 8 years now. Although he primarily played the piano for fun, he now has a dedication to use his talent for the community, hence why he has joined the Bernards Ensemble. He believes that he should use his skills for the greater good because he can, even if they aren't much. Besides the piano, Daniel also enjoys practicing archery, reading, and modifying nerf blasters. He looks forward to exploring and obtaining more skills in the future.
Helen studied at the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University under the tutelage of Molly Barth. At the Blair School, Helen played principal flute in the Vanderbilt Orchestra and Wind Symphony. Helen was also an active member of the Contemporary Music Ensemble. She has performed at Carnegie Hall and the New York Flute Fair. Helen now works at a music agency in Nashville, TN
Syon is a junior at Cornell University where she studies Biology and plans to pursue a career in the intersections of law and medicine. She has been playing piano and viola for over 10 years and has been involved in various orchestras like the NJ Regional Orchestra, school orchestras, and the New Jersey Youth Symphony. She has also attended the Brevard Summer Music Festival and has performed at Carnegie Hall. At Cornell, Syon is continuing her musical studies, performing with the Cornell Orchest.
Ethan is a senior in high school in Livingston, New Jersey. He started playing cello in his school’s music program when he was 9 years old and began to take private lessons 3 years after being charmed by its rich tone that resembled the human vocal range. In his earliest ensemble days, he played at the Lakeland Youth Symphony for 2 years, only to later join the New Jersey Youth Symphony by 2019. He has made it into the Northern NJ Regions Orchestra and has also won first prize in the Concert Festival Competition of 2020. Outside of orchestral music, he appreciates many other different genres of music, his favorites being punk rock and metal, but his all-time favorite artist being Radiohead. Ethan currently has the interest to follow a career path in medicine in psychiatry and is excited to participate in the Bernard Ensemble.
Ashley is a senior attending Montgomery High School. She has been playing trumpet for 8 years, and has been a part of numerous ensembles, including but not limited to, Brass ensembles, NJ Regional Bands, Jazz bands, Stage bands, and Pit Orchestras. She is also the current president of ROCO(Red Oak Chamber Organization) and YMVA(Youth Musician Volunteer Association), two student-run organizations at her school. Much of her time is spent volunteering for many local children’s programs, such as the Toddler Town Program in Praise Presbyterian Church. Outside of her extracurriculars she enjoys an eclectic variety of ever-changing hobbies.
Philip is a freshman at University of Rochester and has been playing classical guitar for 7 years. He attended Manhattan School of Music for classical guitar and is the only one who played one there in the Precollege at the moment. Other than classical guitar, he can play the more conventional steel string acoustic guitar. Besides music or school, in his free time he likes to bike with his friends or talk to them online
Ethan is a senior at Hamilton College where he studies economics. At Hamilton, he participates in various activities including the varsity swim team, Finance Club, and Psi Upsilon fraternity. Although he no longer plays the French horn, he is still passionate about music and grateful for the opportunities and valuable experiences it has given him.
James is an alumni and former pianist for the Bernards Ensemble. He is currently a senior at Duke University, where he studies Statistics and Public Policy. At college, he is involved with the Duke Chronicle, the Hart Leadership Program, the Center for Politics, and the campus sketch comedy organization. In the future, James hopes to study environmental and economic law.
Brandon is attending NYU with the class of 2025. He has played cello for nine years and has participated in the All States Orchestra, Regional Orchestra, School Chamber and Symphony Orchestra, and New York Youth Symphony. In addition to orchestras and symphonies, Brandon has taken part in multiple volunteer orchestras and events such as PEC and ARC, as well as music festivals such as the Summit Music Festival in Manhattanville. In addition to music, Brandon is a part of clubs such as the Youth Advisory Council for the Congressman, Project Sunshine Non-Profit, and other assorted clubs.
Jason is a freshman at Purdue University. He has been playing piano for over nine years and has played the oboe for seven years. Jason is also one of the founding members and is an active player of the Bernards Ensemble since 2016. Jason has received solo and chamber awards from competitions such as the 2022 The New York Classical Music Competition, the 2021 OPUS Music Competition, and more. In addition to music, Jason is part of his school’s varsity track team, has practiced and taught taekwondo for more than 14 years, and has played tennis for five years. He is also part of his school’s Unified Peer Leader’s class, where various students are chosen and assist students with special needs during their classes. Jason hopes to bring joy to people through music and sports.
Carys is a freshman at Northeastern University College of Engineering. She has been playing violin for 11 years and has been engaged in many orchestras including New Jersey Youth Symphony and her school’s symphony orchestra. She has also performed at notable venues such as Carnegie Hall and Princeton University’s Alexander Hall. Outside of music, she is a four-year varsity tennis player and the Captain of the Ridge Girls Tennis Team, as well as the founder and director of Feed to Give, a nonprofit organization. She is a committed individual and loves to take leadership roles in the activities she is passionate about, and especially in music.
Eric takes passion in playing the alto saxophone as well as tenor saxophone. Eric participates in many different kinds of bands such as the Bridgewater-Raritan Monday Jazz Band and Wind Ensemble, The Jazz House Kids Big Band, Elefante’s Allstar Jazz Band, NJ Region II Jazz Band, and many more. Eric loves playing the saxophone and he wants to use his talent to bring joy and happiness to many people. Eric thinks being part of the Bernard’s Ensemble is an honor and he is very happy to be a proud member of the organization.
Julie is currently studying Studio Art and Psychology at Lafayette College. She has played piano for four years and started singing in 5th grade, and enjoys baking and painting. During high school, Julie participated in Track and Field, and now she is currently a member of the Lafayette Track and Field team.
Philip is a senior at Ridge High School. He has played trumpet for nine years and in CJMEA Regions Band for three years. In his free time, he plays tennis for his school’s team and performs with jazz group Dixietones throughout his local community. As part of the Bernards Ensemble, he enjoys spreading joy through his music at service-oriented events. Empowered to interact more with his community, Philip has worked with the Somerset County Democratic Committee to increase voter awareness and participation. He plans to further work for his community through a major in the social sciences.
Alexander is a sophomore at Emory University who has been in the Bernards Ensemble since 2019. He has been playing cello for around 9 years. He has won prizes for the NLPA Competition, the International Virtuoso Competition, the Young
Musicians, the Prima Volta (allowing him to perform at Carnegie Hall), the Vivo International, and the New York Artist International competition. He also won 1st place as a duo with Minji Kim (member) for the New York International Music
Concours. For his orchestras, he has been part of the NJ All state and the Central Jersey Regionals orchestras, the New Jersey Youth Symphony, the New York Youth Symphony, the All-Eastern Orchestra, and the Emory University Symphony Orchestra. He also has interned at the GMP Young Artists Summer Music Camp. He
was a varsity swimmer for his high school swim team and part of the National Honors Society. He also participated in the BU Tanglewood Music Camp summer 2021 and volunteered at the Praise Korean Cultural Community Center as a teaching assistant from 2019 till 2022.
Adrian Kim is currently studying Computer Science at Rutgers New Brunswick, where he plans on pursuing a career in data science. He has been playing piano since he was eight and has participated in several competitions internationally. He received many solo and chamber accolades from competitions such as the The New York Classical Music Competition in 2022, and the International Young Artists Competition. He has performed solo pieces in concert halls such as Carnegie Hall and is looking forward to performing in many more in the future.
Stephanie is a Senior at Montgomery High School. She has been accepted into numerous vocal organizations throughout her life including, but not limited to, the New Jersey Honor Choir, New Jersey Regional Choir, and the Chamber Choir at MHS. She often spends her time participating in her school’s volunteer organizations such as UNICEF and Red Cross Club. In her free time, she enjoys recording covers of her favorite songs and writing original songs of her own.