Birmingham academics proud parents of BBC Young Musician 2018 competition winner

Lauren Zhang, BBC Young Musician 2018 competition winner, performing at the International Conference on Women in Physics 2017

Amongst the many people congratulating Lauren Zhang, the teenage pianist from Birmingham who yesterday (13 May) won the prestigious BBC Young Musician 2018 competition, none are more proud than Lauren’s parents, Shuang Zhang and Hui Li.

Lauren and her family moved to Birmingham in 2010, after her father, Professor of Metamerials Shuang Zhang, was offered a role at the University of Birmingham’s School of Physics and Astronomy. Shortly afterwards, Lauren’s mother, Dr Hui Li, also took up a role at Birmingham, where she currently works as a Senior Lecturer in Statistics and Econometrics at the School of Mathematics.

16 year old Lauren, who will be sitting her GCSEs this week, attends King Edward VI High School for Girls in Birmingham. She is also a member of the Junior school in the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. She won this year’s competition for her performance of Prokofiev’s 2nd Piano Concerto in G minor, op.16, which she performed with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

Reacting to his daughter’s achievement, Lauren’s father Professor Shuang Zhang, said: "We are extremely excited about Lauren’s winning the BBC Young Musician of the Year, and somehow we still can’t believe it was real. In the past we have been closely following the BBC Young Musician programme, never realising that some day Lauren would win this prestigious title. We are so proud of her."