PCA Student Recognized for Excellence in Music

Adam Li, a rising third grader at Portsmouth Christian Academy, is very excited about playing on a Steinway model D piano at Symphony Hall in Boston this coming September.

“You don’t get to play on a model D very often,” says Adam. The 8-year old recently participated in the 2019 Steinway Piano Competition in Boston where he competed with more than 30 participants and won first prize in his group (ages 9 and under). The Steinway Competition Winners Concert will be held at the Symphony Hall on Saturday, September 7th. Back in May of this year, Adam also won first place in his age group in the Granite State Piano Competition.

“It has been an incredible experience working with Adam and his parents,” says Mr. Gregg Pauley, Adam’s piano teacher. “Soon after Adam started studying piano with me, he began to show that he understood the connection between the sound that he was making at the piano and an idea that was formed in his mind. In other words, he saw how the music was an expression of his imagination. One of the unique attributes that Adam possesses is his willingness to work hard at mastering an idea, whether that idea is musical or technical. Teaching a student like Adam is rewarding on many levels. I get to work on music that I love and share that experience with a student who wants to learn. I get to work with a student who is playful and clever and makes me laugh. I get to work with a student who succeeds at making music at a high level, but who also succeeds at being a wonderful human being.”

Over the past three years at PCA, Adam has developed strong interest in music and science.  Art and library are also among his favorite topics at school. And his friends tell of a peer who is creative and big of heart.

Mr. Stevens, Fine Arts Director at PCA, says, “It’s rare to come across someone Adam’s age who makes such a connection with the music he makes.  It’s not about the notes; it’s about the music and communicating that music in an expressive way.  I’ve absolutely loved having Adam in my music classes at PCA these last few years.  My reward is seeing the joy Adam takes in music and how others are blessed by his playing!”

Adam’s second grade teacher, Mary Lenz, echoes these praises. She says, “Adam has many gifts and abilities, and it’s a joy to see him shine!”

Beyond school and piano, Adam enjoys reading books, playing toy cars and Legos, riding his bike, and swimming. He likes traveling to other countries, especially China where his parents are originally from. In the future, Adam’s plans include becoming a pianist, an engineer, an airport firefighter, and a medical doctor, though he hasn’t figured out how he will split time among these professions!

Congratulations to Adam on his impressive accomplishments and for working hard to pursue his God-given talents!