Meet 15-year-old Cello Prodigy Matthew Chung

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Matthew Chung: 2021 Bucks County Youth Concerto Competition Winner; Buckscountysymphony.org

STAFF WRITER Rasika Sivakumar

Matthew Chung, a sophomore at MHS, placed second chair in the 2022 PMEA District 11 Orchestra. He recently won first place at the Crescendo International Competition after which he was given the privilege of playing in the Winners Recital at Carnegie Hall. 

Matthew has been playing the cello for the past 10 years as a Methacton student and as student of Hsiao Ming Chen at the Community Music School in Trappe, where he is a recipient of a merit scholarship. Chung is first chair cello of his school orchestra. His talent showed as a first grader when he played with the third graders at his school. 

He had participated in several competitions including the Bucks County Symphony Orchestra’s 2021 Youth Concerto Competition where he won first place for his performance of the “Hungarian Rhapsody” by David Popper. As the winner of this competition, Chung received the prestigious Jeanne Marvin Philips Prize and was invited to perform with the orchestra at the 2021 Family Concert in December of that year. 

He is also a member of the Eridanus Trio that started five to six years ago. The threesome consists of Matthew on the cello, his sister Haley Chung playing the violin, and pianist Daniel Chu. Together, they placed second in the Tri-County Youth Festival 2019 for Junior Ensemble and were invited by the Pennsylvania Philharmonic to perform at one of their concerts in the summer.

Recently, Matthew Chung joined the Center for Gifted Young Musicians of Temple Music Prep where he takes two master classes with Philadelphia Orchestra cellist Priscilla Lee. 

Although he is not interested in taking up his skill as a career, Matthew plans to play the cello in college and wants to expand his repertoire. 

“I enjoy playing cello, but practicing is less enjoyable because I am generally more focused on improving rather than enjoyment,” he said.

Matthews is a distinguished honor roll student and plays on the high school’s junior varsity soccer team. Matthew’s mother played violin in PMEA regionals when she was younger, and his younger sister, Carolyn plays the piano.