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 the Lions European Musical Competition. She gained orchestral experience in the European Union Youth Orchestra, the Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra and the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra.
She joined the second violin section of the Belgian National Orchestra in September 2012 and was promoted to the position of co-principal violinist a year and a half later. She has also performed extensively as a chamber player and on solo recitals. Huang joined the first violin section of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in 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 Huang on loan.
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.
The Italian viola player Martina Forni grew up surrounded by many kinds of music. Having listened to and later on specialized in music from the baroque to the modern classical era, as well as jazz and argentinian tango, she became an eclectic chamber musician.
She graduated Magna Cum Laude at both Conservatories of Verona and Amsterdam, having studied with Nobuko Imai, Michael Gieler, Umberto Forni and Anner Bijlsma among others.
After being a member of the Dutch Radio Philharmonic Orchestra and playing for many years with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra and Asko-Schoenberg, she has been an official member of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra since 2013.
Martina plays in many chamber music groups such as the GoYa Quartet Amsterdam,
Il Faro Kwartet and the Ensemble Lumaka, with which she won several competitions.
She also plays baroque viola and has been principal viola of Anima Eterna Brugge, Ensemble Zefiro and La Chambre Philharmonique.
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.