Stevens Named LI Scholar-Artist

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Stevens Named LI Scholar-Artist

High school senior Michael Stevens was selected to be one of 20 Long Island Arts Alliance Scholar–Artists for 2016-2017, a prestigious honor that annually recognizes top Long Island seniors who have demonstrated a successful school career in both the arts and academics.

The LIAA’s Scholar-Artist Awards program, presented by the New York Community Bank Foundation in cooperation with Newsday, partners with local universities to offer full scholarships to qualified honorees.  

Last September 8, Stevens attended a reception at Half Hollow Hills High School East, introducing the 2016-2017 class of Scholar-Artists were introduced and honored. He was featured as a Scholar-Artist in Newsday during December, and this spring, he will participate in a special presentation of all the Scholar-Artists at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts.

Stevens has spent every Saturday for the past seven years in both the Manhattan School of Music and The Juilliard School Pre-College programs, studying with members of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. In May 2016, his Juilliard chamber group Noname won an international chamber competition against more than 100 other ensembles from 13 different countries. Additionally, Stevens and East Islip classmate Kevin Jacobsen spend Sundays as the two youngest brass section members of the nation’s premier youth orchestra, the New York Youth Symphony. 

Since fifth grade, Stevens has spent his summers participating in rigorous music programs such as Tanglewood and the New York State School of Orchestral Studies. Most recently, he toured China and Europe with the Carnegie Hall National Youth Orchestra of the USA. With the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra, he visited Hungary, the Czech Republic, Austria and Poland; in the latter, he performed a memorial concert on the grounds of the infamous Auschwitz concentration camp. 

As a sixth- and eighth-grader, Stevens was the winner of the Northeast Horn Workshop High School Competition and runner-up in both the Juilliard and MSM concerto competitions. He has been a NYSSMA level 6 pianist since third grade and level 6 horn player since fourth grade, with an average score of 99.7, earning him All-State honors on both instruments.

Academically, Stevens has been enrolled in honors and AP classes throughout his secondary years and has been able to maintain a GPA above 102. Throughout his musical and academic years, he has played both club and school soccer, most recently with the East Islip boys varsity soccer team.

“I am so incredibly grateful for the hard work and support from my music teachers in the school district,” said Stevens. “From elementary school onward, they inspire hundreds of students every day.”

Stevens is applying to music conservatories nationwide where he hopes to pursue a career as an orchestral horn player.