Musician receives piano award

Other Staff

With the end of year approaching and seniors preparing for graduation, many students are busying themselves with the difficult task of acquiring scholarships. While his peers search for college money, Christopher Dang, ’02, was awarded the Music Teachers Association of California Senior Award 2002 for Fresno County.

“I began playing at the age of four and enjoyed my self thoroughly,” Dang said. “Yet, in sixth grade I was incredibly close to quitting. Thanks to my parents, especially my mom, I was convinced to continue and pursue my piano career.”

Despite Dang’s rebellion in his early piano years, the incessant encouragement of his mother and mentor, Sister Anna Marie Kaeberle, motivated him to continue his art. At a summer session hosted by Johns Hopkins Center for talented youth at California Institute of Technology (CAL Tech), Dang discovered a new appreciation for music.

“The theme of the session I attended was ?The Connections Between Math and Music’,” Dang said. “One of the projects I participated in was to analyze the major differences between the four areas of music. Through this project I was able to realize how much time, effort and talent it took music composers to write their scores.”

This all paid off, as Dang was honored by receiving the Music Teachers Association of California Senior Award 2002 for Fresno County in April. The award was only presented to five others. In order for Dang to qualify for the award, he was required to take seven years of Path A examinations, the highest route for passing the advanced level, yet surpassed these with 10 years of examinations.

“This award not only represents my musical achievements, but also my growth and maturity as a person,” Dang said. “Even in tough times, I was able to make it through with the help of God, my mom, and my Piano teacher. I could not have done it without them.”

Dang also was recently awarded with the Regent Scholarship from University California (UC) Riverside. In order to qualify for this honor award, participants must have high academic standings and community service.

Dang, who retains a grade point average of 4.25 and holds the position of Chairman of the Lab Department of Volunteer Services at Saint Agnus Hospital, easily qualified for this award. Depending on financial standings, this award could give a recipient a full ride to Riverside, yet for Dang, he received an honorarium of $3,878 per year for four years.

Dang plans to attend UC San Diego Warren College and major in the field of Bio Engineering. The process of admission into the Bio Engineering major requires an additional three weeks of review because the field is so competitive.