Musical careers are sometimes a gamble, but not all of them necessarily start in a casino. Elissa Lee Kokkonen’s career did get its start at the Monte Carlo Casino where the final round of the 1992 Henryk Szerying Competition was held. There, the 20-year-old Kokkonen was named co-winner of the first prize.
Tonight, Kokkonen will perform Mozart’s Concerto No. 3 with the Spokane Symphony. The program also includes Rossini’s Overture to “Semiramide” and Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances. Fabio Mechetti will conduct.
Kokkonen grew up in Hong Kong and Korea, the daughter of a Korean mother and a Finnish father. Already a prodigious talent at 11, she came to the United States to study with Aaron Rosand at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia. Before winning the Szerying Award, Kokkonen was the silver medalist in the 1990 Carl Flesch Competition in London.
The concert begins at 8 p.m. in the Opera House. Tickets range from $13 to $28 and are available at the Symphony box office in the skywalk level of the Seafirst Building, 624-1200, and at G&B; locations.