“I am delighted and humbled to have been selected as a Young Scholar of the Lang Lang International Music Foundation. Music has a beautiful way of bringing people closer, acting as a truly universal language that ties us all together. Wielding this enourmous amount of power, music education and community outreach have the potential to change millions of lives. The Lang Lang International Music Foundation plays a crucial role in realizing this potential by spearheading initiatives to make access to classical music and music education more accessible and ubiquitous. I look forward to joining my fellow Young Scholars in working to improve both as musicians and as arts leaders, under the mentorship of Lang Lang.”
Amir Siraj is a fifteen year old American pianist from Boston, Massachusetts. Hailed by TheaterJones as a “gentle” yet “passionate” interpreter, he has played at venues including Carnegie Hall and Boston’s Symphony Hall. A top prizewinner at local, national, and international competitions, Amir has performed with orchestras including the New England Philharmonic, the Quincy Symphony Orchestra, and the Metrowest Symphony Orchestra, and prestigious organizations including the Harvard Musical Association and the American Liszt Society.
Since his Carnegie Hall debut in 2010 with the American Fine Arts Festival, he has been a three-time prizewinner at the Steinway Society of Massachusetts Piano Competition, a laureate of the Chopin International Competition in Hartford, a first prize winner at the New England Piano Teachers Association Ruth Davidson Competition, two-time first prize winner at the Music Teachers National Association’s Massachusetts division, and five-time first prize winner at the Massachusetts Music Teachers Association Bay State Contest. In 2015, Amir was selected as one of twenty-four young pianists in the world to participate in the Cliburn International Junior Competition and Festival. In 2016, he was selected as a National YoungArts Foundation Winner.
As an avid proponent of the music of his time, Amir has performed many world premieres including chamber works by Stephen Feigenbaum and solo works by Larry Bell, in addition to frequent performances of published contemporary works by Lera Auerbach, Marti Epstein, and William Bolcom. He studies privately with Helena Vesterman and attends the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, and has taken master classes with the likes of Peter Serkin, Douglas Humpherys, Hung-Kuan Chen, and Meng-Chieh Liu.
Amir also has a passion for bringing music outside of the concert hall, and into communities, where classical music can have a real, tangible impact on people’s lives. As an Arts Leader with From The Top’s Center for the Development of Arts Leaders in Boston, he has worked over the past three years to spread the joy of music in hospitals, senior living communities, and children’s museums. Amir worked with the Steinway Society of Massachusetts in 2014 to give a performance at the Chapel of the Massachusetts General Hospital, where his music was broadcast live to over 1,500 patient rooms. In January of 2016, Amir organized a concert in partnership with From the Top and Music For Food to raise funds for local hunger relief efforts, which garnered enough donations to provide over 5,000 meals for community members in need. He has also performed chamber music extensively in community settings. In his free time, he enjoys rowing on CRI’s Men’s Varsity crew team and running the Brookline High School Innovation Club, which he founded.