Born in 1994, the Belgian violinist Sylvia Huang had her first violin lessons with her father and continued her studies at the Académie des Arts de la Ville de Bruxelles. She won first prize at the Belfius Classics National Musical Competition in 2004 and at the Lions European Musical Competition in 2008. She was a member of the European Union Youth Orchestra from 2009 to 2010 before joining the second violin section of the Belgian National Orchestra in September 2012. She was promoted to the position of co-principal violinist a year and a half later. Sylvia has been a member of the first violin section of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra since August 2014.
In 2015 a Carlo Ferdinando Landolfi violin from around 1750 was purchased by the RCO donors’ foundation Stichting Donateurs and provided to Sylvia on loan.
She took part in several international festivals such as B-Klassiek Festival van Vlaanderen or Échappées Musicales du Médoc. In May 2019, she became laureate of the Queen Elisabeth International Competition and was awarded the Prix Musiq3 du Public and the Canvas-Klara Prijs.
Official website: Sylvia Huang
Mirelys Morgan Verdecia
Hailing from Havana, Mirelys Morgan Verdecia studied at the Instituto Superior de Arte in her native city, making solo appearances with such orchestras as the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba under the direction of Leo Brouwer and the Orquesta Sinfónica de Cali in Colombia. She was selected by Claudio Abbado to join the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra training programme in 2000.
Mirelys has won various prizes, including two first prizes at the Musicalia Music Competition in Havana. She moved to Europe in 2003, studying with Rainer Schmidt in Madrid and with Ulf Wallin at the Hanns Eisler Hochschule für Musik in Berlin.
She has taken part in many tours as a member of the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra and the Verbier Festival Orchestra under such leading conductors as Valery Gergiev, James Levine, Charles Dutoit and Michael Tilson-Thomas. Mirelys has also played in the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, the orchestra of the Deutsche Oper in Berlin and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra. She was selected to participate in the orchestra academy of the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival in 2006.
From 2009 to 2013 Mirelys was first violinist of the Orquesta Nacional de España. In August 2013 she joined the second violin section of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
Saeko Oguma Saeko Oguma studied viola at the Tōhō Gakuen School in Tokyo. She subsequently gained orchestral experience playing in the Deutsches Symphonieorchester Berlin and in several leading orchestras in Japan, inclusing the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra and the Tokyo Opera Nomori Orchestra under the baton of Riccardo Muti. She performed chamber music in festivals throughout Japan.
She pursued her studies with Sven Arne Tepl, Marjolein Dispa and Nobuko Imai at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam.
Saeko Oguma was prize winner during the International Johannes Brahms Competition in 2008. Earlier, she had won the 2006 Tokyo music competition, the Nagoya international music competition and the 2002 competition of the Japan Classical Music Association.
After winning the Amsterdam National Viola Competition, she joined the Concertgebouworkest's viola section as assistant principal in September 2010.
Cellist Honorine Schaeffer studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse in Paris (from the age of fifteen) and with Leonid Gorokhov at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Hanover.
She is the recipient of many prizes, including first prize at the 2012 Lions European Musical Competition. Schaeffer has worked as a substitute with the Orchestre de Paris and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, and has performed at numerous festivals as a chamber player.
She was a member of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Academy during the 2012–13 season. She completed her studies as a member of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra’s Herbert von Karajan Academy in June 2014. In August of that same year, Schaeffer joined the cello section of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
With three RCO colleagues, Honorine formed the GoYa Quartet in 2015. In the same year, the quartet won the Prix de Salon, an annual prize given to orchestra members by the RCO's business circle.