16-year-old Theonie Satzuki Wang wins Queensland Symphony Orchestra’s Young Instrumentalist Prize 2020

Introducing 16-year-old Theonie Satzuki Wang. Remember her name, because she’s destined for musical greatness after winning the prestigious Queensland Symphony Orchestra Young Instrumentalist Prize for 2020.

16-year-old Theonie Satzuki Wang wins Queensland Symphony Orchestra’s Young Instrumentalist Prize 2020


From a pool of 44 exceptionally talented musicians, six finalists were selected to perform before a panel of judges and an audience in the QSO Studio over the weekend, with Theonie emerging victorious.

The young violinist from Brisbane State High School began her musical journey at three years of age and achieved her LMusA with a distinction in 2018. Theonie joined the Queensland Youth Orchestras Junior String Ensemble at nine and as well as winning many awards, has also been accepted to play in the Australian Youth Orchestra National Music Camp and Young Symphonists in 2020.

Her goal for the future is to become a private teacher so that she can develop and mentor her students.

Queensland Symphony Orchestra Director of Artistic Planning Tim Matthies said the Young Instrumentalist Prize was testament to Queensland’s high-quality music education system.

“We welcomed nearly 50 applicants from across South East Queensland this year. The audition round and the final were both very competitive, with my fellow adjudicators and I deeply impressed with the young musicians’ technical and interpretative abilities,” he said.

“The final featured six diverse musicians on a variety of instruments, including snare drum, bassoon, and saxophone, alongside strings. We had a very difficult decision as the finalists all played at the very highest level, a reflection of the absolute wealth of talent here. Their future, and Queensland’s music-making future, is assured.”

“Theonie Satzuki Wang was a very deserving winner and the Orchestra looks forward to performing with her later this year. We will also provide mentoring opportunities with our visiting artists, including the internationally acclaimed, Brisbane-born violinistRay Chen.”

Demonstrating that musical talent runs in the Wang family, Theonie’s older brotherGuillaume was the 2013 winner of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra’s Young Instrumentalist Prize and is this year’s winner of theAntonio Janigro International Cello Competition in Croatia.

This year’s other finalists were:

  • Joshua Jones, cello: Brisbane State High School
  • Jennifer Lin, snare drum: Mansfield State High School
  • Anna Suzuki, violin: All Saints Anglican School
  • Andre Oberleuter, bassoon: Brisbane School of Distance Education
  • Johanna Ide, saxophone: Mansfield State High School

Queensland Symphony Orchestra created the Young Instrumentalist competition in 1999 to inspire talented secondary school students along their music pathways. The Finalists Recital was added to the competition in 2009 giving more performance opportunities to applicants. The Prize gives the winner the opportunity to perform as a soloist with Queensland Symphony Orchestra in a public concert, which has launched the performing dreams of many young musicians. Cash prizes were added for the six finalists in 2012 and mentoring opportunities with Queensland Symphony Orchestra musicians were offered to finalists from 2019.

The Young Instrumentalist Prize is proudly supported by CP Morris and the Australian Decorative and Fine Arts Society (ADFAS), Brisbane