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Congratulations to our 2023 scholarship recipients!

Place des Arts awards annual scholarships to help students in their pursuit of excellence in the visual, literary and performing arts. This year, we awarded $3,200 to 10 deserving students in music, literary and theatre arts in recognition of their artistic excellence and achievement. Find out more about them below by clicking on their names!

Alvin Sheng

Aria Dahl

Gregory Ramdin

Mia Banner

Molly Ringham

Tasha Barham

Sienna Fogliato

Tiensa Tran

Victor Cisneros Jimenez

William Bao

Alvin Sheng

Music, Elliott Harty Piano Scholarship

Age: 14

Coming Soon.

Aria Dahl

Music, Junior Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 9

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
     I started learning piano in 2020 at age 6 with Christina Krystecki as my teacher.
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?  This gives me confidence in continuing to pursue my goal of being a professional musician.
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    Ms. Christina has been excellent at setting and stretching my goals for piano learning and motivating me with stories about how she started piano and became amazing at it.
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.  
    When Ms. Christina told me she was going to nominate me for this award it gave me extra motivation.
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    It’s my teacher, Ms. Christina because she’s so good at piano and she inspires me to be good as well. 

Gregory Ramdin

Music, Junior Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 11  

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    At age 3, I started making up songs on my mini steel drum and cuatro
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?   I want to be a master musician and the scholarship takes off a lot of the load for my piano lessons.
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    Isaac is a wonderful teacher, and he has been patient with me. He has made me a better piano player by teaching me technique, performance skills and how to read sheet music.
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.  
    My most special memory at Place des Arts was when there was extra time at the end of a performance and Isaac invited me to play one of my own compositions for everybody. It was a dream come true!
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    Kylie Minogue, because her music combines several styles and that’s what I want to do. I admire that she beat cancer and has had a long career. 

Mia Banner

Literary Arts, Coquitlam Maillardville Heritage Trust Award

Age: 12

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    I guess, speaking technically, I started writing when I was 4 or 5 but it was when I hit 10 that I really started to see something in my writing, something that I felt I could grow. 
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?   I’ve always wanted to write a book, I thought it’d be a good show off my skills. Achieving this scholarship makes me feel a step closer to that. 
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    It was my sixth-grade teacher who really pushed me to be the best I could be. I definitely felt her belief in me. 
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship, or your fondest memory.  
    I think relationships are definitely important for advancement and growth and I know that every friend I’ve met at Place des Arts has made an impact on me and I certainly hope I’ve made one on them. 
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    I have many powerful role models and my life and I’m better because of it, but in writing specifically my language arts teacher would be my first pick. She’s always organized and always believes in growing my writing skills. 

Molly Ringham

Theatre, Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 11

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    I started when I first took a summer camp for theatre in 2021 with Seamus Fera and liked it so much that I decided to join Coquitlam Youth Theatre.
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?
    This scholarship helps me achieve my goals by teaching me the skills to pursue acting further in my life and helping me become more comfortable speaking in front of large groups.
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?
    My teacher has helped me achieve my goals by doing many exercises for speaking in front of lots of people and has taught me the foundations of theatrical work.
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.
    My fondest memory at Place des Arts is when I was at the Evergreen Theatre for a performance and after a scene, there was a sigh of relief from everybody that everything went okay.
  5. Who is your role model and why?
    My role model is Millie Bobby Brown, because she is only 19, is a talented actress, and has received 12 awards

Tasha Barham

Theatre, Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 16

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    My mom and my aunt signed up my brother for an art class at Place des Arts. My parents wanted me to do something fun while my brother was doing his art class. My mom found out about the musical theatre class and wanted to sign me up because she thought I would be interested. Since my first theatre class, I’ve continued taking classes and I really enjoy theatre. 
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?   I felt like I’ve worked hard to come this far and after all my years of doing theatre, I feel like this award means a lot to me. I can use this scholarship to keep going to theatre classes and discover new characters from different plays or musicals. 
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    My teacher Seamus taught me a few things about character work, and indirect and direct movements for theatre class (e.g.: If this character was a grumpy old person, this person would be leaning forward a lot and has a double bass voice). 
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.  
    My two memories of Place des Arts were when I did a play called Winne the Pooh (which then got edited to the Honey Files) and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I enjoyed the Honey Files because the character I played has autism and because I have autism, I could think about how that character would talk, behave and think. When I did Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, I got to play an Oompa Loompa leader and that helped my leadership skills and it was fun to dive in the voice of an Oompa Loompa. 
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    I chose Mary McNeely because I relate to her a lot with how she is trying to find her purpose and figure out who she is. That’s what I go through, and I ask myself the same questions. 

Sienna Fogliato

Theatre, Junior Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 11 

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    I started practicing theatre during the summer of 2021, when my friend, my little brother and I joined a Place des Arts theatre summer camp. I decided I loved acting and I and my friend joined the Junior Coquitlam Youth Theatre program in September.  
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?  Winning this scholarship helps me achieve my goals by helping me join the Junior Coquitlam Youth Theatre program again next year. Where I will continue to do something I love and will continue practicing and improving my acting skills. This will help me become a very good actor one day.  
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    My teacher has helped me achieve my goals because he taught me to be a great actor by telling me where to improve and what I’m doing great at. He also helped me learn to be more confident in front of people and in general. He helped me achieve the scholarship and I am so grateful to him.  
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.  
    My fondest memory at Place des Arts is when we were waiting for our play Cinderella to begin at the Evergreen Theatre. We were all nervous and we were waiting in the dressing room, and we fooled around, practiced lines, filmed a video, got ready and danced. It was so much fun.  
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    My role model is Jenna Ortega because she played Wednesday in Tim Burton’s (my favourite director) new show, Wednesday. She played it well because when she acted, I felt like she acted out Wednesday’s creepy personality but was funny at the same time. I loved how she choreographed her own dance in two days! 

Tiensa Tran

Music, Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 18

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    I first started practicing piano in grade 10. I have always wanted to play piano since I heard my cousin playing at my house. However, piano lessons are expensive, and my family could not afford it. Later, I  thought that I was too old for it, but I realized starting then would be better than not starting at all. 
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?  My education and the piano are two of my highest values in life. However, both are costly and require much time and money. This  scholarship will give me the financial aid to help me continue my journey within musical learning and deepen my relationship with the piano. 
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    My teacher has acted as a mentor and role model for me in both musical studies and life. She is always there to give me advice and guide me in learning the piano, supporting me to step out of my comfort  zone and try out new things. Because of her, I continued to join new clubs and volunteer experiences, as well as maintain a steady development in learning the piano. 
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.  
    I think that the most impactful relationship I have at Place des Arts is my connection with my teacher. Ms. Krystecki is an encouraging teacher who always pushes me to do things to help me grow as a  person. Although balancing school, sports, clubs and piano is difficult, with the support of Ms. Krystecki, it is possible. 
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    A role model in my life is PianoDuess on YouTube and Spotify. The reason is because they create unique arrangements and interpretations for some films and songs that I enjoy. The arrangements they      create generally have a darker, more melancholic atmosphere to them and I hope in the future I will be able to create song variations for pieces I like as well. 

Victor Cisneros Jimenez

Music, Junior Place des Arts Scholarship

Age: 12

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    My parents were and are one of the reasons and motives to continue with music. I started to practice piano when I was five years old. I took piano classes in Peru, and when my family and I moved to Canada, I could continue with my studies. Therefore, piano is something that accompanied me during all these years. 
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?  It helps me to achieve some goals. For example, I would like to go the University, but now it is early to think about that. However, my family and I want to buy another piano to continue practicing and improving my skills. 
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    My teacher helped me a lot, not only because she believes in me but also because correcting my mistakes helped me to improve and achieve my goals regarding music. She also motivates me to keep practicing more. 
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship, or your fondest memory.  
    During the time I have spent at Place des Arts, I experienced moments of satisfaction learning and participating in concerts. However, during the pandemic, it was difficult not to be able to participate in these important events. In addition, the remote exams were also challenging for me because this type of test made me more nervous than in person, but it was a great idea when Place des Arts decided to provide the ability to take the exam there. Finally, organizing some concerts via Zoom was a great idea because we could live connected to music and PdA despite the difficult times experienced during the pandemic. 
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    It’s hard to decide who exactly it is. However, my music teacher at school is my favourite role model because he inspires me to live connected with music. His tips and time working with us are great opportunities to continue learning about music. Usually, his music advice is helpful not only in improving my performance but not in keeping in touch with music. 

William Bao

Music, the Leonore Peyton Memorial Award

Age: 16

  1. When and how did you get started practicing your art form?
    I started practicing piano at the age of 8 and started playing it because of its beautiful sound and its versatility. 
  2. How does winning this scholarship help you achieve your goals?  Winning this scholarship can provide me with financial support as tuition for universities. It can also provide me with many opportunities like additional training, and performance experiences for a future career in music.  
  3. How has your teacher helped you achieve your goals?  
    My teacher has helped me with piano so much that I don’t know how to thank him. He instructed me on the techniques and musical interpretation clearly, motivated me numerous times when I was lost on where I was and kept me on track toward my goals. My teacher also provided me with countless performance opportunities like concerts. I cannot thank him enough for everything he helped me with.  
  4. Share a story about your time at Place des Arts. It can be about an inspiring moment, an impactful relationship or your fondest memory.  
    It was around the age of 12 when I had my first formal performance in a concert at Place des Arts. I still remember how nervous and panicked I was, and my face was red like a tomato when I was worrying if I will play the wrong note or not. I thought everyone there would be very grumpy/serious and I will have an awkward moment. However, things were the opposite. I completely loved the atmosphere at Place des Arts and everyone was clapping for me like a star. I changed my attitude towards performing in front of crowds after the first time and I think that’s the warmest gift or lesson that Place des Arts gave me. 
  5. Who is your role model and why? 
    My role model is Lang Lang, the pianist. I am very proud of how he became one of the world’s most famous pianists from his origin. He wasn’t rich or noble, but he’s my model because of his hard-working attitude towards music and his spirit of never giving up. There’s always a bitter story behind every successful person, and I want to learn from his spirit in music, and his never-giving-up spirit. I hope to become a successful person as well in the future. 

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