LEADING LIGHT: Võ Minh Quang is an inspiration for other youngsters who love music and studies. VNA/VNS Photo Minh Đức
Among 10 people praised as outstanding young exemplars in Việt Nam in 2020, the youngest face belonged to a high school student in Hà Nội.
Võ Minh Quang, 15, who attends the Giảng Võ Secondary School as well as the National Academy of Music, is an inspiration for young people when it comes to studying and loving music.
The Hồ Chí Minh Communist Youth Union recently presented him with the Outstanding Young Vietnamese Award 2020 in recognition of his miraculous achievements in both school and in piano contests domestically and internationally.
MUSIC MAESTRO: Quang tickling the ivories at home. VNA/VNS Photo Minh Đức
With passion and hard work, and major support from his family, Quang has won nearly 40 awards, including more than 20 first and special prizes. Some are said to be for pianists far beyond his years.
He was also the first student and the youngest in Việt Nam to be granted Diploma Licentiate from Trinity College London, in 2019, and LMuSa -- Licentiate of Australian Music Examinations Board, in 2019.
In addition to his love for the piano, Quang also has a deep interest in his studies, posting high marks in all subjects.
ADMIRED: Quang and his classmates at school in Hà Nội. VNA/VNS Photo Minh Đức
He is among a select group of students in specialist maths classes and a stand-out in English, winning many prizes in both subjects and others, including English Olympiads at the district level and second prizes in maths in 2019 and chemistry in 2020.
“Quang really is a conscientious student,” says the Deputy Principal of Giảng Võ Secondary School, Vi Mạnh Tường. “He is also sociable and close to his friends at school.”
Nguyễn Thiếu Ngân, head teacher in Quang’s 9A3 class, says she understands how hard Quang must study attending both secondary school and the music academy.
“Though studying at two schools at the same time is quite difficult, Quang works hard to complete all of his course work,” she says.
“The school creates the conditions for him and the other students to follow their studies. We stay close to them, not only regarding their studies but also in other issues, including health.”
Trần Minh Khoa, one of his classmates, says that although Quang must arrange his studies between the two schools, he still spends time with friends and is admired by all.
“We are proud of him and his achievements,” Khoa says. “He is a great example to follow and he gives everyone the motivation to work harder.”
Quang’s mother, Trần Thị Thanh Hà, says he plays sports such as wushu, swimming, chess, basketball, and table tennis during the summer holidays.
“He spends more time on some sports than others, but he gives his all to no matter what he is doing,” she says.
Quang could read books when he was four, much to the surprise of his family.
“On family outings we found he could read most of the signs and advertisements we passed,” she says.
When he was five, the family sent him to a piano centre, and from his very first days he was able to memorise all the notes.
A week later, he could complete most of the lessons in the textbook.
“All of this is due to inherent talent,” his mother believes.
2015 marked a milestone in his piano playing, when he won the first and special prizes at the Việt Nam Piano Festival and was admitted straight into the National Academy of Music.
His mother adds that when he went to study piano, his family was a little concerned that he might struggle and be distracted from other studies. But after recognising his talent and passion for music, they tried to create the conditions for him to pursue his dreams.
“When I love a certain subject and spend time on it, I just don’t feel there are any difficulties,” Quang says.
His achievements include first prize at the 1st China-ASEAN Teenagers Piano Competition in China in 2015, the Chopin International Piano Competition in Thailand in 2017, and the Mozart International Piano Competition in 2018.
The Mozart International Piano Competition, which took place in Bangkok in July 2018, attracted 34 participants from Thailand, Viêt Nam, South Korea, Malaysia, and Australia, who competed in four age groups in front of a judging panel of internationally acclaimed professors and artists.
Quang faced nine other contestants aged from 13 to 17.
In the final round, he delivered a flawless performance of Mozart’s Piano Sonata No 10 in C major, K 330, and Chopin’s Scherzo No 3, Op 39.
Not only known as the “golden boy” of piano and with outstanding academic achievements overall, Quang has also been involved in meaningful community activities, winning the admiration of teachers and friends.
He has played at many fundraising concerts, including one in Hà Nội last year that donated 5,000 sets of protective clothing and 4,000 medical masks to 11 hospitals.
He was also among 10 recipients of the Potential Young Face Award 2019 from the Hồ Chí Minh Youth Union. VNS