Awards

SOMO Award

The Spirit of the Memorial Orchestra Award is given at the discretion of the conductor to a student who exemplifies what the Memorial Orchestra is all about: spirit, dedication, selflessness, putting others first, teamwork, a positive attitude, etc.

Hess Award

The Hess Memorial Award recognizes the string student who most closely exemplifies the high musical standards and dedication to the orchestra shown by Harold Clyde Hess, violinist and teacher.

Mr. Hess retired with his wife, Lavina, to Spring Branch in 1971, following a teaching career at Milliken University in Decatur, Illinois.  Before long, his studio was a gathering place for many young musicians, eager to learn and to play well.

Trained in the Belgian tradition, Mr. Hess had studied in Europe under Eugene Ysaye and Cesar Thomson, two acknowledged masters of the violin.  He also served Thomson as translator and assistant.  Mr. Hess passed on to his students the craftsmanship he had learned from his mentors.  Bringing out the best began with very high musical standards.  But, there was more.

Always there to inspire, instruct and applaud, Mr. Hess gave relentlessly to the student what he expected the student to give to the violin.  As relationships deepened, he demonstrated a faith in God and a love of life and beauty which all who knew him recognized and loved.  His death in February of 1982 was a great loss.

Hess Award Winners

  • Kristine Chin - 2018
  • Jonathan Keith - 2015
  • David Cremins - 2014
  • Sarah Song - 2013
  • Elizabeth Cai - 2012
  • Danny Cho - 2011
  • Gene Hu - 2010
  • Shawn Banon - 2009
  • Sarah Chung - 2008
  • Brittany Tran - 2007 
  • Meesha Savadkoohi - 2006 
  • Brandon Perry - 2005
  • Laila Rahmatian - 2004
  • Christina Wai - 2003
  • Laura Abrams - 2002
  • Mary-Beth Hardin - 2001
  • Shari Lim - 2000
  • Aline Nahaas - 1999 
  • Angela Kuhnen - 1998
  • Catherine Lee - 1997 
  • Calvin Chen - 1996
  • Michiru Shimono - 1995
  • Will Robertson - 1994
  • Mandy Fuerst - 1993
  • Steven Rogers - 1992
  • Flora Lee - 1991
  • Charles Tsai - 1990
  • Sharon Rogers - 1989 
  • Anne McCormick - 1988
  • Amy Hakuno - 1987
  • Jennifer Crowell - 1985 
  • Jennifer Crowell - 1984