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John Cron Award for Career Development

In February of 2023, The Ross McKee Foundation launched the John Cron Award for Career Development. The award is bestowed upon a highly qualified Laureate of the Ross McKee Piano Competition. 

In creating this award, The McKee Foundation's Board of Directors set out to honor the legacy of the late John Cron, who was the Foundation’s highly respected first Executive Director. Cron founded the McKee Piano Competition in 1998 and was dedicated to developing and providing performance opportunities for young pianists.

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John Cron (1931-2021)

The John Cron Award provides an opportunity for the McKee Board to work with an especially talented and motivated young artist and their teacher to support and encourage the Laureate's artistic development. The Board will work to help find performance and promotional opportunities as well as a professional recording.

The first recipient of the John Cron Award is Sarah Yuan, a McKee Laureate from the 2021 Piano Competition. Sarah has distinguished herself as a thoughtful and communicative young artist, and the San Francisco International Festival is proud to present her in a solo debut at the festival as part of the John Cron Award. In addition to her solo debut performance, the John Cron Award also includes a professional recording opportunity for Sarah. 

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"Sarah Yuan is an enormous talent disguised as a modest person. A wonderful mind enters a score and considers the form, the style, the soul-state. Then, a sophisticated technique does her bidding. Also a devoted ensemblist, Sarah has studied in the distinguished Young Chamber Musicians program and her splendid piano trio took first prize in the Junior 2020 Fischoff Chamber Competition. Sarah thrives on challenge, works like a professional, is tough, resilient, stage-ready and deeply gifted. "


-Dr. Sharon Mann, San Francisco Conservatory of Music

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