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Pomona College Junior Wins 2008 Rudolph Polk Memorial Award in Music Given by the Claremont University Consortium

Claremont Graduate University student I-chun Chen has been named the recipient of the 2008 Rudolph Polk Memorial Award in Music, graduate division, for piano performance. Elisha Nuchi, a junior at Pomona College, was named the recipient in the undergraduate division, for performance in piano. Winners were selected in recognition of technical and musically impressive performance of works by Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Haydn, Muczynsky, and Rzewski, following the award auditions recently held at The Claremont Colleges.

The Rudolph Polk Memorial Award in Music was established in 1958 by Rudolph Polk’s widow, Mrs. Pauline Polk (Claremont), Professor Kenneth Fiske (Pomona College), Dr. Robert Bernard (Claremont University Consortium), with gifts from Jascha Heifetz, Gregor Piatigorski, and the Los Angeles art dealer Dazell Hatfield. Mr. Polk, a noted violinist, was influential as a concert impresario and promoted the musical careers of a number of concert artists. The prestigious Polk Award is administered by Claremont University Consortium (CUC) and was presented by Alfred Cramer, Professor of Music, Pomona College.

I-chun Chen studies with Dr. Sergei Martinchuk at Claremont Graduate University while pursuing a Doctorate of Musical Arts. Ms. Chen studied at The Curtis Institute of Music in 2000 and earned a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music (2005) and a Master of Arts in Music from California State University, Long Beach (2007). Earlier in her musical career, Ms. Chen won the Taiwan National Music Competition – Youth Division in Piano. In her master degree study, she won the first prize of Music Teachers National Association California Young Artist Piano Competition and represented the California State to the Southern-west division.

Elisha Nuchi is a junior at Pomona College who studies piano and linguistics. A native of New York, he has performed in numerous concerts throughout high school. At age fourteen he was the winner of Turtle Bay Music School’s Totally Mozart Concerto Competition, and in his junior and senior years of high school he performed at the Donnell Library and Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. At Pomona College he has participated in many events, including solo and chamber works, and the premiere of a 2007 work by Tom Flaherty at the Ussachevsky Memorial Festival. Mr. Nuchi studies piano at Pomona College with Genevieve Lee.

Claremont University Consortium (CUC) is the central coordinating institution of The Claremont Colleges. As such, CUC provides common services for the internationally renowned cluster of two graduate and five undergraduate colleges serving more than 6,000 students. The consortium offers the expansive physical facilities and wide selection of courses, faculty, student services and extracurricular activities of a university, and the personalized education of small private colleges. The Consortium includes Pomona College (established in 1887), Claremont Graduate University (1925), Scripps College (1926), Claremont McKenna College (1946), Harvey Mudd College (1955), Pitzer College (1963), and the Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Science (1997) and Claremont University Consortium (1925).

Barbara Jefferson
Phone: (909) 607-7431