YCAT Selects 7 New Artists

17th May 2019

For the first time in 35-years, all 7 finalists were selected for representation by the Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) at the Final Public Auditions held at Wigmore Hall on Thursday 16 May 2019.

Chosen from over 100 applicants in the preliminary rounds the seven artists selected by the jury were: Ben Goldscheider (horn), George Harliono (piano), Mayumi Kanagawa (violin), Maciej Kuɫakowski (cello), Ema Nikolovska (mezzo-soprano), Theo Plath (bassoon) and Samuele Telari (accordion).

The final jury consisted of Gaetan Le Divelec (Director, Askonas Holt), Angela Dixon (Chief Executive, Saffron Hall), Kathryn Enticott (Director, Enticott Music Management), Dominic Fyfe (Senior Executive Producer, Decca Classics), Stephen McHolm (Academy Director, Verbier Festival), Alasdair Tait (Chief Executive & Artistic Director, YCAT) and Roger Wright CBE (Chief Executive, Snape Maltings).


Born in 1997 in London, at the age of 18, Ben Goldscheider (horn) was a Concerto Finalist in the BBC Young Musician Competition performing with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican.

Highlights since then include his debut at the BBC Proms in 2018, appearances as soloist with the Lucerne Symphony, Britten Sinfonia, Aurora Orchestra, Manchester Camerata, the Prague Philharmonia and Sinfonie Orchester Berlin at the Berlin Philharmonie. During 2019/20 he makes his debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and with the Mozarteum Orchestra in the Mozartwoche Festival in Salzburg. Ben is currently studying at the Barenboim-Said Academy in Berlin with Radek Baborák (ex-principal Berlin Philharmonic).


Born in 2001 in London, in 2017 George Harliono (piano) became one of the youngest students ever to take up a four-year scholarship at the Royal College of Music for a BMus degree, studying with Professor Vanessa Latarche.

A top prize-winner at the 2016 Grand PIano Competition in Moscow, broadcast live on Russian television and Medici TV, George has gone on to appear as soloist with orchestras across Russia. He has been invited to perform alongside Denis Matsuev and Lang Lang, and worked with conductors Valery Gergiev, Alexander Sladkovsky and Anton Lubchenko. Future engagements include recitals in the Konzerthaus Vienna, Russian Academy of Arts (Moscow), Duszniki Chopin Festival (Poland) and Slee Hall in Buffalo University (New York).

Born in 1994, of Japanese-American heritage, Mayumi Kanagawa (violin) currently studies at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin with Kolja Blacher.

In 2018 Mayumi won 2nd Prize and the Concerto Prize at the Long-Thibaud Crespin Competition in Paris broadcast by France-Musique. Solo highlights include performances of the Berg Concerto with Finnish Radio Symphony, Britten Concerto with Trondheim Symphony, Beethoven with the Belgian National Symphony Orchestra and Sibelius with the Mariinsky Orchestra.  During 2019/20 she gives a debut recital in Tokyo, and appears as soloist with the Amadeus Orchestra in Tokyo and the Hiroshima Symphony Orchestra.


Born in 1996 in Gdańsk (Poland), Maciej Kuɫakowski (cello) is currently studying with Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt at the Kronberg Academy and with Marcin Zdunik at the Stanislaw Moniuszko Academy of Music in Gdańsk.  

In 2015 Maciej won 1st Prize and a special award at the Lutoslawski International Cello Competition and in 2017 was a Laureate in the Finals of the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels. As a soloist Maciej has appeared with the National Philharmony Warsaw, Baltic Philharmony, the Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Brussels Philharmonic, St. Petersburg Symphony, Calgary Symphony and Aukso: Chamber Orchestra of Tychy performing concertos by Dvorák, Lutoslawski, Pendercki, Panufnik, Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky.


Ema Nikolovska (mezzo-soprano) currently studies with Rudolf Piernay on the Guildhall School Opera Course, having previously completed a Guildhall Artist Masters degree. Born in Skopje, Macedonia in 1993, Ema grew up in Toronto, Canada where she studied voice and completed an undergraduate degree in violin at The Glenn Gould School with Paul Kantor and Barry Shiffman. Ema is a BBC New Generation Artist for 2019-2021, and recently won the Ferrier Loveday Song Prize at the 2019 Kathleen Ferrier Awards as well as the Oxford Lieder Young Artist Platform.  On 18 May she gave a recital at Wigmore Hall as a Guildhall Wigmore prize-winner. This summer she attends the Verbier Festival Academy’s Atelier Lyrique and the Creative Dialogue XI Symposium led by Kaija Saariaho in Finland.

Born in 1994 in Koblenz, Theo Plath (bassoon) is currently completing his Masters at the Hochschule fur Musik Munchen with Professor Dag Jensen. In 2018 he won a prestigious Deutsche Musikwettbewerb prize and was appointed principal of the German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra.  

As a soloist Theo has appeared with the Düsseldorfer Symphonikern, Dortmunder Philharmoniker, the Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz and Beethoven Orchester Bonn. Concert highlights include recitals at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg,  Tonhalle Düsseldorf and Beethoven-Haus in Bonn. An avid chamber musician, he has taken part in festivals across Europe including the Schleswig-Holstein, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, and ‘Spannungen’ Heimbach Festivals.


Born in Spoleto (Italy) in 1992, Samuele Telari (accordion) studied with Massimiliano Pitocco at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory in Rome, graduating with the highest honours in his Masters in 2016.  A top prize-winner at numerous national and international competitions in 2018 he won 1st Prize at the Arassate-Hiria Competition in Spain and in 2013 1st Prize in the Castelfidardo International Competition in Italy.

Highlights over the last year have included the premiere of a new Concerto for accordion and orchestra by Enrico Blatti with the State Hermitage Orchestra in St. Petersburg and the release of his first CD LIMES on the VDM label to critical acclaim.  Samuele has given recitals across Italy, at the Berlin Philharmonie, the St Petersburg State Academic Cappella Hall, Kragujevac in Serbia, and in Greece, Copenhagen, Brussels and Strasbourg.