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Venue: Municipal Auditorium, 100 W. Eighth St., El Dorado
The South Arkansas Symphony will feature piano prodigy Antonio “Nio” Ajero in an inspirational orchestra performance of Russia’s great composers, including Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2.
A 14-year-old from Nacogdoches, Texas, Ajero currently studies in the Music Preparatory Division of Stephen F. Austin State University. Known as “Nio,” the award-winning pianist started piano studies with his father, Mario Ajero, professor of piano at Stephen F. Austin. Ajero is a two-time National Gold Medal Winner from The Royal Conservatory for earning the highest marks in the nation on the conservatory’s Level 9 and 10 piano exams. He is currently one of only 15 students from the state of Texas to be awarded a scholarship grant from the Texas Commission of the Arts and Texas Cultural Fund under the Texas Young Masters Program. Ajero has been a winner of numerous competitions, including competitions with Steinway Piano in Dallas, Baylor/Waco, Texas State University’s Young Artists, Red River Radio Young Artists and SMU Institute for Young Pianists, among others.
The piano virtuoso performed on NPR’s “From the Top” with Christopher O’Riley on Show No. 336 at LeTourneau University’s Belcher Center in Longview, Texas. “From the Top” is considered America’s largest and most prestigious platform dedicated to celebrating the stories, talents and character of classically trained young musicians. In addition to playing piano, Ajero has earned a first degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do at Nacogdoches Blackbelt Academy, and enjoys cooking.