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Sunday, April 14, 2024
HomeLifestyleEntertainmentYoung Pianist from Two Harbors Takes Center Stage at Carnegie Hall

Young Pianist from Two Harbors Takes Center Stage at Carnegie Hall

Carnegie Hall, built by steel magnate Andrew Carnegie, opened in 1891 and was meant to create a new home for music in New York City. Ac­cording to carnegie­hall.org, Carnegie was recorded as saying “It is probably that this hall will intertwine itself with the history of our country.” On opening night, Pyotr Illych Tchaikovsky made his American debut, conducting his own music. The rest is history.

Recently, a local young pianist earned the opportunity to grace the same highly regarded stage that Elton John, the Beatles, Tony Bennet, Frank Sinatra, Bruce Springsteen, Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, Judy Garland, and too many more to mention here had performed on.

Eddie Ojard, a 15-year-old junior who attends Two Harbors High School, has been playing piano since he was three years old. At that age, he was fascinated with electronic toys that had buttons to push. “My mom’s keyboard became one of my favorite toys ever,” he reminisced. That fascination and passion would eventually lead him to one of the most renowned concert venues in the world.

Despite juggling his time between academics and sports, Eddie, also a member of the Junior Varsity boys basketball team, tirelessly pursued his musical ambitions. “The motto of Carnegie Hall is Practice, Practice, Practice,” he shared. “But in my case, I am not only practicing, but I also have to compete all along.”

Last February, Eddie participated in the American Protégé International Piano & String competition in the Junior Category. Facing stiff competition from around the globe, he won and earned the prestigious opportunity to perform at Carnegie Hall.

Winning the American Protégé is no small feat—it’s an international competition that attracts a diverse pool of talented applicants. At Carnegie, on December 17, 2023, Eddie found himself in the company of winners hailing from countries such as China, England, Indonesia, and Hong Kong, all sharing the same stage on that memorable day, fulfilling a dream that many musicians aspire to.

“It’s an honor for me to perform at Carnegie Hall,” Eddie exclaimed. “I was very excited, especially meeting other winners from other countries, who were all so very talented.”

While traveling to New York with his mother, Helen Ojard, they were fortunate to have a friend living in the city who generously guided them around the area.

Acknowledging the support that made his journey possible, Eddie expressed gratitude, saying, “All my accomplishments couldn’t be possible without the help of my parents, Patrick & Helen Ojard, my teachers, and the assistance of my mom’s friend.”

Congratulations to Eddie, his family, and his fans for this remarkable and memorable achievement!

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