After a two year hiatus, the competition kicks off this week with 17 international competitors


The Coopers with the 2017 top prizewinners © Roger Mastroianni

17 young violinists between the ages of 13 and 18 will compete this week for the top prize of $20,000 at the the Thomas and Evon Cooper International Competition. Held from 15 August until 19 August, the competition will take place at Warner Concert Hall, Oberlin College and Conservatory.

The cash prize pool is worth $40,000. The competition’s champion will win a two-year partnership with MKI Artists that will include up to 10 concerto or recital engagements throughout the United States. Composer Jeff Scott is creating a new six-minute work for violin and orchestra, granting the winner exclusive rights to its world premiere and two years of performances. Additionally, Jonathan Solars Fine Violins of New York will provide a two-year loan of a rare Italian violin.

The competitors are:

  • Sameer Agrawal, 17, Chicago, Illinois, United States
  • Calvin Alexander, 17, Shreveport, Louisiana, United States
  • Esme Arias-Kim, 16, Hoffman Estates, Illinois, United States
  • Bianca Ciubancan, 16, Chicago, Illinois, United States
  • Brandon Du, 18, Ellicott City, Maryland, United States
  • Maxwell Fairman, 18, Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
  • Audrey Goodner, 16, Reston, Virginia, United States
  • Dániel Hodos, 17, Budapest, Hungary
  • Kento Hong, 16, Edgemont, New York, United States
  • Seohyun Kim, 13, Seoul, South Korea
  • John Lee, 17, Vernon Hills, Illinois, United States
  • John Matters, 18, Bethesda, Maryland, United States
  • Katelyn Moon, 17, Hackensack, New Jersey, United States
  • Jonathan Okseniuk, 16, Mesa, Arizona, United States
  • Bobby Boogyeom Park, 16; resides in Bayside, New York; citizen of South Korea
  • Anna Stube, 16; resides in Calgary, Canada; citizen of Latvia
  • Chunyi (Grace) Zhou, 16; resides in Irvine, California; citizen of United Kingdom

The 2022 jury consists of Oberlin violin professor Sibbi Bernhardsson, who also directs the competition. He is joined by an esteemed panel including Danielle Belen from the University of Michigan, Philip Setzer of the Emerson Quartet, and John Zion of MKI Artists. 

All events are free and open to the public. The complete competition will be streamed live at

Founded in 2010, the Thomas and Evon Cooper International Competition alternates between piano and violin disciplines. Previous violin winners include US violinist Eric Charles Chen in 2019 Swedish violinist Johan Dalene in 2017.