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Black Violinists to debut with the Seattle Symphony

Two students: Madison Cole and Eden Pawlos, who are violin students at the Key to Change Studio in Renton will make their professional solo debuts with the Seattle Symphony this month.

Cole and Pawlos are prizewinners of the Key to Change Concerto Competition, sponsored by the Seattle Symphony, resulting in music scholarships and a performance with the orchestra. Both students recently performed for Dr. Jill Biden, the First Lady of the United States and performed on Unmute The Voices on Classical King FM radio.

Cole is a 12th grader at Garfield High School and Pawlos is an 11th grader at Kentridge High School. They both study violin privately with Dr. Quinton Morris and Noah Geller, the concertmaster of the Seattle Symphony at Key to Change.

The musicians of the Seattle Symphony are some of the best in the world–they are major-league professionals. Our students’ incredible opportunity is parallel to student athletes stepping onto the field with the Seahawks or the Mariners. It will be a rare and transformative moment that will showcase their immense promise, skill, and dedication.

Dr. Quinton Morris is the executive director and founded Key to Change in 2017 to provide underserved middle and high school students with violin and viola lessons. Students from Key to Change have matriculated to colleges and universities, and won prizes in prestigious competitions. He is also the Professor of Violin at Seattle University, where he recently became the first Black man in the College of Arts & Sciences to receive the distinction of professor. He is the second living Black violinist in United States history to obtain the rank of professor at a university.

Cole and

Pawlos will make their debuts with the Seattle Symphony on Tuesday, October 24, 2023 at the IKEA Performing Arts Center in Renton. There is a Pre-Concert Recital beginning at 6:15pm, followed by the solo performance with the symphony at 7:30pm. The performance is free and open to the public.

For students interested in taking violin or viola lessons may visit our website at



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