The elements of Earth will be at the heart of the Mid-Columbia Symphony concert March 26 at Three Rivers Convention Center.
And adding youthful flair to the event will be guest performances by the winners of this year's Young Artists Competition, Susan Bengtson and Justin James C. Chua, both from Richland.
Susan, 16, plays viola, and Justin, 13, plays piano.
Winning a Young Artists Competition is exciting for any young musician, but then getting to play with a professional symphony is even more exciting, as well as a bit unnerving, except perhaps for Susan.
"I was 14 and the youngest member (of the symphony)," Susan said. "However, that is no longer the case since new (teenage) musicians joined this season."
She began playing violin at age 4, but the magical sound of the viola caught her attention in 2004 and she's never looked back.
"Music has been an integral part of my life for as long as I can remember," she said. "I instantly fell in love with the richer, more versatile tone."
Susan attends Richland High School, where she also plays in the orchestra. She plays electric violin for her church worship team, and in her spare time she has four students whom she's teaching the viola.
Justin started playing piano at age 7 and has since won numerous gold, silver and bronze medal awards around the Northwest, as well as five overall Young Artists contests.
He is an eighth-grader at Carmichael Junior High in Richland, where he carries a 4.0 GPA. And when he isn't rehearsing or performing, Justin enjoys soccer, tennis, basketball and swimming.
The Earth concert is part of the symphony's music theme for its 2010-11 season titled The Elements of Music. The Fire and Air concerts were earlier in the season and Water wraps up the season May 21.
The symphony's concert starts at 8 p.m. The evening's repertoire includes a selection of works by Mozart, Respighi and Jacob, with Aaron Copland's Outdoor Overture opening the concert.
Tickets are from $25 to $50 plus service charges and are available at www.ticketmaster.com or the coliseum box office. Tickets purchased at the box office avoid service charges.