In March when Grade 4 student Ryan Shih stepped onto the stage at Lincoln Center to perform Chopin's Waltz in A Minor, he kept his cool. Despite being just 10 years-old, this was not his first time in this spotlight competing in the Concert Festival International Competition so he knew what to expect. He tried not to look at the more than 200 people in the audience, instead focusing on his music. His approach worked and he won first prize for outstanding performance for the second consecutive year.
Ryan has been playing piano for over four years, his skills evolving with regular practice and lessons. Though accolades are exciting, it is this self-confidence derived from playing that his parents are most excited about.
"Piano has really helped Ryan develop self-governance, which has benefits beyond music," said his mother Sandra Chan. "At school, he has improved academically and is better organized. King provides an environment that encourages extracurricular activities like music and sports and encourages the development of skills outside the normal horizon of school education. Through music, Ryan has become more aware of his own potential, which has improved his self confidence immensely. This personal development is really what we as parents are looking for and why we chose King School for Ryan."
Ryan said he loves sports and is looking forward to playing football and lacrosse for King in the not too distant future. He continues to compete in piano competitions and won an Honorable Mention at a Steinway and Sons competition in Greenwich just last week. Congratulations Ryan - the entire King community is proud of your accomplishments!