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About this Video

2017 TEDxBeaconStreet Interview with Keila Wakao. For Keila Wakao, music was a way for her to cope with the hardest time of her life: her father’s diagnosis with cancer. At 11 years old, Keila was overwhelmed by this life-changing news, but playing her violin gave her a way to show her father how much she loved him. In this beautiful talk and performance, Keila shares the beautiful music that helped them both survive.


About the Speaker

Keila Wakao

Keila Wakao

Violinist Keila Wakao, aged 11, began study at the age of three with Mrs. Jan Riggs. Developing rapidly, the late Joseph Silverstein accepted Keila as a student at the age of six. She currently studies with Donald Weilerstein, Soovin Kim, Anait Arutunian, Bela Horvath, and Keisuke Wakao. Despite her young age, Keila has proven herself as a serious, competitive violinist. At the age of seven, she won the Forte International Music Competition (New York, New York). This was followed by 1st place wins at the 8th Yokohama International Music Competition (Japan, 2014), and 1st place at the New York International Competition for Young Artists (New York, 2016). Ms. Wakao performed Mozart’s Concerto in D Major, KV 211 and Meditation from Thais with the Metrowest Symphony Orchestra (2015). Keila appeared with the Waltham Symphony Orchestra as a winner of Young Artist String Competition and also performed with the Ogaki Chamber Orchestra in Japan (2016). She was selected to participate in Julia Fischer’s violin master class and played at the final concert in Tutzing, Germany (January, 2017). Most recently, Keila won the New England Conservatory Prep Concerto Competition and performed as a soloist with the NEC Junior Repertoire Orchestra in the prestigious Jordan Hall in Boston. In her spare time, Keila enjoys reading, drawing, fashion design, and studying the Japanese language.