Tuesday, September 2, 2014

VOCAL WINNERS: women in opera

Friedrich Schorr as Wotan, Bayreuth
The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up in the women's opera divisions of The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards, 2014.  In addition, the competition honored one additional artist with a Citation for Vocal and Instrumental Excellence and selected four contestants to receive Career Encouragement Citations. The voice teacher of three of the four will also receive a special citation for inspirational teaching. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize 
in Vocal Performance
Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
PROFESSIONAL OPERA DIVISION

The American Prize winner:
MEGAN MARINO
New York  NY
Megan Marino
Hailed for her “considerable range and confidence, navigating lower notes with impressive, clarity yet also managing considerable leaps into the higher range as well, exhibiting a warm, plummy tone throughout,” Megan Marino debuts at the Metropolitan Opera as an Unborn Child in Die Frau ohne Schatten in 2013-14. She also joins the company for Rusalka, Werther, and Rigoletto and sings Handel’s Messiah with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Upcoming engagements include Angelina in La Cenerentola with Green Mountain Opera, Varvara in Káťa Kabanová at the Spoleto Festival U.S.A. In coming seasons, she will join the roster of the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Ms. Marino received The Katharine M. Mayer Apprentice Award from Santa Fe Opera, is a 2nd place winner of Ft. Worth Opera’s McCammon Competition and 3rd place winner of the Lotte Lenya Competition. She has been a regional finalist of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has placed multiple times at the Denver Lyric Opera Guild Competition.

Among judges' comments: "A consummate singer-actor, with all the elements for an international career in place."


2nd Place:
MEGHAN PICERNO
New York NY
Meghan Picerno
American Soprano, Meghan Picerno was last seen making her Carnegie Hall debut in recital with Metropolitan Opera’s Bass’s Hao Jiang Tian. Last year she made her Alice Tully Hall debut singing with the New York City Opera Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Paul Nadler, and the National Center for Performing Arts in Beijing, China as a young artist of I Sing Beijing. As Zerlina in Martina Arroyo’s Prelude to Performance Program’s production of Don Giovanni, she was praised by the New York Times for her “attractive soprano” voice. She received both her Masters and Professional Studies degrees from The Manhattan School of Music. During her time at MSM, she performed in many productions such as Marissa in Henry’s Wife with American Opera Projects, La Princesse et Le Feu in L’enfant et les Sortileges, soprano soloist in September Songs, The Legacy Of Kurt Weill, as well as various performances with the Contemporary Opera Ensemble. She also made her Off Broadway debut as Liza in the musical revue, Falling in Love with Love. This Spring she was selected as a semifinalist in the Lotte Lenya Competition, as well as receiving 2nd place in the 5 Towns Music Awards in the Opera division.

Among judges' comments: "A worldclass coloratura talent, with gripping acting and musical abilities."


3rd Place (There was a tie):
JESSICA ROSE CAMBIO
Modena  ITALY
Jessica Rose Cambio
Italian-American Soprano Jessica Rose Cambio recently made her UK debut as Mimì in the Francesca Zambello production of La Boheme at the Royal Albert Hall after performances in Como, Brescia, Pavia, Cremona, Tel Aviv, and in concert with the LA Philharmonic. She will reprise the role and debut Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni this Fall in Macedonia, Thailand, and China. Other recent engagements include Beatriz in Catán's La Hija de Rappaccini with Gotham Chamber Opera. Her repertoire has included Violetta in La Traviata, Alice in Falstaff, Giselda in I Lombardi, Magda in La Rondine, Liù in Turandot, Nedda in Pagliacci, Micaëla in Carmen, and the title roles in Maria Stuarda, Anna Bolena, and Lucia di Lammermoor.

Ms. Cambio is an avid recitalist, having sung concerts in Italy at the homes of Giuseppe Verdi and Luciano Pavarotti, Helsinki with the Finnish-Italian Association, Moscow at the Galina Vishnevskaya Opera Centre, NY at Carnegie Hall and Rose Hall at Jazz at Lincoln Center; with the Festival Puccini Torre del Lago Orchestra at the Teatro Comunale di Modena, the Orchestra Filarmonica di Torino, the Israeli Philharmonic in Tel Aviv, and the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic at the Shostakovich Grand Hall for Elena Obratzsova’s 70th Birthday. She made her oratorio debut as the Soprano soloist in Bach's Magnificat at the Duomo di Modena.

Cambio has prevailed in an astounding number of vocal competitions worldwide, winning prizes in the Marie Kraja in Albania, Leyla Gencer in Istanbul, As.Li.Co. in Como, and the Gerda Lissner, Licia Albanese Puccini, Giulio Gari, George London, and Loren Zachary Competitions in the US. She was also a finalist in the Julián Gayarre in Spain, and the Voci Verdiane, Marcello Giordani, Ottavio Ziino, and Fondazione Arena di Verona Competitions in Italy, and a semi-finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and Placido Domingo’s Operalia in Quebec and Verona. She was awarded grants from the Richard Tucker, Gerda Lissner, and Georg Solti Foundations, and she completed her musical studies in the US and Italy working with world renowned sopranos Renata Scotto and Mirella Freni.

Among judges' comments: "...a singing actress par excellence."


3rd Place (There was a tie):
SUSAN NELSON
Chicago  IL
Susan Nelson
Equally at home on the operatic stage or in concert repertoire, American lyric soprano Susan Nelson has been praised by critics for her “full, powerful voice – agile and pliant” as well as her interpretations, called both “sensitive and moving” and “full of life and vigor.” She showcases versatility and vocal beauty in repertoire from Bach and Mozart to verismo and contemporary opera.  She has been a seen on the stages of Lyric Opera of Chicago, Opera Delaware, Sarasota Opera, Kentucky Opera, Opera Illinois, and The Savoyaires, and has performed as a soloist with Music of the Baroque, Access Contemporary Music, Elmhurst Choral Union, and Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra.  In December 2014, she will return to the South Bend Symphony Orchestra for their Holiday Pops Concerts.

Among judges' comments: "A very exciting talent."

SPECIAL CITATION: Vocal and Instrumental Excellence
ZOE VANDERMEER
Gaylordsville  CT
Zoe Vandermeer
Zoe Vandermeer specializes in the music of Mozart and Baroque Music as a soprano soloist and also as a recitalist in which she accompanies her singing on triple harp.  On the roster of the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, she is a prize-winning graduate of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, a recipient of the Dame Joan Sutherland Fund, winner of the Bay Area Vocal Arts Competition, finalist of the London Young Artists Early Music Competition, and finalist of the Laurier Concert Aria Competition Canada.  Ms. Vandermeer has given solo performances at International Festival de Deia Spain, Glasgow International Early Music Festival, HarpCon2003 Convention, Bloomington Early Music Festival, Festival Opera, DiMenna Center New York City, Davies Symphony Hall San Francisco, and ABC Center Los Angeles.  Her CD 'Angel's Wine, Songs of John Dowland' won second place for Best Classical Album.  www.zoevandermeer.com

Among judges' comments:"many artistic and expressive risks in this performance, making for an exciting and strong musical statement."



The American Prize 
in Vocal Performance
Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY OPERA DIVISION

The American Prize winner:
MONICA DEWEY
Stone Mountain  GA
Monica Dewey
Monica Dewey, soprano, was born in Atlanta, Georgia and began her studies at the University of Kentucky. She received a full scholarship award from the Alltech Vocal Scholarship Competition and studied with Dr. Everett McCorvey and Cynthia Lawrence. She now continues as a student of Elizbeth Nohe Colson in Atlanta, Georgia. She was a semi-finalist in the International Competition “Dr. Luis Sigall” in Viña del Mar, Chile and the Orpheus Vocal Competition in Tennessee. This summer she will be a young artist at the Chautauqua Institute for Music.

Recent opera engagements include: Pamina Die Zauberflöte with Lyric Opera Studio Weimar, Rose Street Scene with Harrower Opera Workshop, and Christine Phantom of the Opera with University of Kentucky Opera Theatre. She has been a featured soloist with Thüringer Symphony in Germany, University of Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, and Atlanta Community Symphony Orchestra. Monica has recently begun graduate school at Indiana University where she studies with Carol Vaness.

Among judges' comments: "a superb, rich instrument that is capable of such a range of colors...along with superb breath control and release of onset."


2nd Place:
LAUREN K. FREY
Pittsburgh  PA
Lauren Frey
Lauren Frey was recently commended for her performance as Musetta in Opera Western Reserve's production of La Boheme.  She "brilliantly negotiated the intricacies of her bel canto role with sparkling ease."  In her famous "Musetta's Waltz" aria, Frey "depicted Musetta beautifully," while her ensemble vocals were "absolutely stunning." (The Classical Cleveland)

In 2014, Lauren received 3rd place in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Regional Auditions, after winning 1st place in her MONC District.  In 2013, Lauren placed second in the Senior Division and first in the Vocal Division with the Philadelphia Orchestra's Albert M. Greenfield Competition.  In 2012, Lauren won 1st place in the MONC District Auditions, and won Westminster Choir College's Voice Scholarship Competition in 2011.  

Lauren performed Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni with Lyric Opera Studio Weimar in Germany in 2013.  She originated the role of Grace in the world premiere of Daron Hagen’s The George Washington Suite with Opera Theater Pittsburgh.  Credits include Coaxer in Kurt Weill’s Threepenny Opera, Tina in Jonathan Dove's Flight, the title role in Handel's Alcina, Die Erste Dame in Die Zauberflöte, and Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte.

Among judges' comments: "a vibrant voice, rich yet flexible, showing much floridity through resonance."


3rd Place:
JULIA WOLCOTT
State College  PA
Julia Wolcott
Soprano Julia Wolcott made her operatic debut as a college freshman in the role of Marcellina in Penn State Opera Theatre’s production of The Marriage of Figaro. Subsequent roles included Fiordiligi in Mozart’s Così fan tutte and Ottavia in Monteverdi’s The Coronation of Poppea. Julia attended the SOARS Program (Summer Opera, Art Song, Recording Seminar) in Bayview, Michigan as well as OperaNEO, an opera festival and workshop in San Diego, California. Julia graduated from Penn State in December 2013 with her bachelor's degree in voice performance, where she was a student of Jennifer Trost. In January, she was named as a finalist in the National Opera Association's Caroline and Dominick Argento Vocal Competition held at the National Opera Center in New York City. This summer she will participate in the Artists Training Seminar of the Castleton Festival where she will work with renowned conductor Lorin Maazel. www.juliawolcott.com

Among judges' comments: "a rich, beautiful timbre that is both refined and refreshing. "


The American Prize 
in Vocal Performance
Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
SPECIAL CITATIONS, 2014

The American Prize selected four contestants in the College/University category to receive Career Encouragement Citations. Three of the four study with the same teacher at Southwestern University in Georgetown, TX. Their teacher will also receive a special citation for Inspiration in Teaching. Congratulations!

Career Encouragement Citation:
LILLIAN BAILEY-BRODERICK
Plainfield  VT
Lillian Bailey-Broderick
20 year old Vermont native soprano, Lillian Bailey-Broderick, is going into her junior of undergraduate studies at the University of Vermont. After her debut in 2010 as Lady Ella in G&S's Patience, Miss Bailey-Broderick has gone on to perform other Gilbert & Sullivan roles including Mabel, Josephine, and Patience. At school, she has performed partial roles, such as Fiordiligi and Countess. Last summer, the soprano sang the title role in Princess Ida "beautifully and dramatically" (VT Times Argus). She also made her role debut as Konstanze in an English version of The Abduction from the Seraglio.  This summer she will be studying with Oberlin in Italy.  


Career Encouragement Citation:
KELSEY DEBNER
Austin  TX
Kelsey Debner
Kelsey Debner is a sophomore at Southwestern University pursuing a Bachelor’s of Music in Vocal Performance.  She grew up in Austin, Texas, and was homeschooled through high school.  In addition to studying voice since 8th grade, she has studied violin since 2nd grade.  She is a member of the music fraternity Delta Omicron.  

Career Encouragement Citation:
ABIGAIL JACKSON
Dallas  TX
Abigail Jackson
Abigail Jackson is a junior Vocal Performance Major pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. She's currently preparing the role of Fiordiligi in Mozart's Cosí fan tutte to perform with the opera theatre class at Southwestern University. She is also preparing for her junior recital as part of the BM degree. This past January she was cast in the Austin Lyric Opera chorus for Tosca. Her debut opera theatre role with Southwestern University was the Plaintiff in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury in April 2013.

Career Encouragement Citation:
MELISSA KREUGER
Kingwood  TX
Melissa Kreuger
Mezzo-Soprano, Melissa Krueger is a Junior Vocal Performance major at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. She currently studies with Dana Zenobi, a noted soprano in the Austin area. Although new to the opera world, she has already performed in productions with organizations such as Opera in the Ozarks and Austin Lyric Opera. Southwestern has blessed her with the opportunity to sing several leading roles such as Dorabella in Cosi fan Tutte, the Counsel in Trial By Jury, and Polly in The Beggar's Opera. Melissa also works as the Alto Section Leader at United University Methodist Church under the direction of Marc Erck.


SPECIAL CITATION: Inspiration in Teaching
DANA ZENOBI
Southwestern University  Georgetown  TX
A versatile performer who embraces both traditional repertoire and new music, Dana Zenobi appeared in the American Premiere of Philip Glass' Waiting for the Barbarians with Austin Lyric Opera, and performed with Lyric Opera Cleveland in the first production of Mark Adamo's Little Women directed by the composer.  The Cleveland Plain Dealer praised her "dazzling coloratura" and "irresitible phrasing" as Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and she has garnered similar success in roles ranging from Mozart heroines Konstanze and Donna Elvira to Verdi's Violetta Valéry.  She is also an active concert soloist, and teaches voice, pedagogy, song literature, and diction at Southwestern University (Georgetown, TX).  Dr. Zenobi is founder of BELTÀ, a nonprofit that supports emerging artists (www.BELTA.org).  She earned her DMA in Voice Performance and Pedagogy at The University of Texas at Austin.  She also holds an MM from UT, and a BA from Duke University.  www.danazenobi.com

***
Congratulations!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

VOCAL WINNERS: high school men

Friedrich Schorr as Wotan, Bayreuth
The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up in the men's high school division of The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards, 2014. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Vocal Performance
Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION

The American Prize winner:
THOMAS WEST
Lookout Mountain  TN
Thomas West
Thomas West is an 18 year old baritone from Lookout Mountain, Tennessee but is currently living and studying classical voice at The Juilliard School in New York City, NY. Over the past two years, Thomas has taken first prize in many regional and national vocal competitions including the Performing Arts League Vocal Competition in Chattanooga, TN, the Knoxville Choral Society Young Classical Musicians Competition, the University of Kentucky Young Singers Competition, Georgia NATS, and the Music Teachers National Association National Competition. Thomas was also featured on the NPR radio show “From the Top” both in 2012 and 2014, and was a 2014 National Young Arts Finalist and Presidential Scholar in the Arts. Thomas is also the founder of ReGenerate, an arts leadership program dedicated to advocating and fundraising for the arts in the public schools of Chattanooga. So far, the group has raised over $14,000 dollars for arts education in his hometown. For more information, please go to thomaswestbaritone.com

Among judges' comments: "His production is free, flowing and beautiful.  Mr. West sings with fine artistry and musicality."


2nd Place:
MATTHEW BISHOP BURN

Greenville  SC
Matthew Burn

Matthew Burn, a native of Greenville SC, is currently a senior studying under Thomas Dickinson at the South Carolina Governors School for the Arts and Humanities. He also attended the Fine Arts Center as a vocal student and studied for two years under Karen Parks. Matthew received a full scholarship to Walnut Hill Summer Opera program where he was able to sing in Milan, Italy and most recently accepted into a program with the Washington National Opera where he sang at the Kennedy Center. He hopes to attend a music conservatory next fall and pursue a career in vocal performance.

Among judges' comments: "an excellent young performer."


3rd Place:
NATHAN KESSEL

Worcester  MA
Nathan Kessel

I am a senior at Shrewsbury High School and reside in Worcester, MA. I sing as a baritone and have won seats in the Massachusetts Central District Honors Choir, MA All-State Honors Choir, the NAFME All-National Honors Choir, and the DCINY International Honors Choir. I attended the Boston University Tanglewood institute in the summer of 2013 as a member of the Young Artist Vocal program. I currently sing at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School’s Youth Chorale and Youth Camerata. I am also singing with the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Tanglewood Festival Choir. I am the youngest male member in the history of the choir, accepted at age 16. I am currently auditioning at conservatories in my hopes to pursue music as a career.

Among judges' comments: "a talented young singer with a good, resonant voice."

***
Congratulations!








VOCAL WINNERS: men in art song

Friedrich Schorr as Wotan, Bayreuth
The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up in the men's art song division of The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards, 2014. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize 
in Vocal Performance
Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
ART SONG/ORATORIO DIVISION

The American Prize winner:
LEO RADO (Radosavljevic)
Wilmette  IL
Leo Rado
Recent 3rd prize winner of the 8th International Klaudia Taev competition in Pärnu, Estonia, twenty-four-year-old baritone Leo Rado is establishing himself as a uniquely versatile performer in the world of opera. He has performed as soloist in opera, art song, and oratorio to high critical acclaim at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, The Peter Jay Sharp Theatre, and Ravinia Festival. In addition to his mastery of the standard operatic repertoire from Monteverdi through Britten, Leo particularly enjoys creating recitals of unknown vocal masterpieces by composers that are more well known for their instrumental music, such as Haydn, Beethoven, Chopin, Grieg, Schönberg and Prokofiev.

Among judges' comments: "a consummate performer."


2nd Place:
CHRISTIAN KETTER
Chicago  IL
Christian Ketter
Tenor, Christian Ketter recently made his Carnegie Hall debut with Marilyn Horne’s festival: “The Song Continues." 2013: Tenor soloist, Bruckner Te Deum, Chicago Bar Symphony and Orchestra; DuBois’ Les sept paroles du Christ; Saint-Saëns’ Oratorio de Noël. Willy Loman: Rizzer’s Death of a Salesman, Chicago Cultural Center. 2011: Mr. Ketter performed under Carlisle Floyd in a concert of Floyd's operatic works. Evita (Che) Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra; Tosca (Cavaradossi) Calumet City Chamber-Ensemble; Herrmann’s Wuthering Heights (Edgar) in its televised Chicago premiere; ShowBoat (Ravenal). 2010: At Ravinia, Mr. Ketter gave a recital benefitting the Misericordia Foundation.

2013: International-Finalist: Lotte Lenya Competition. Friedrich Schorr/The American Prize winner; National-Winner: Chicago Oratorio Award;  2nd National-Winner: Hal Leonard Art Song; The American Prize in Art Song; Shirley Rabb-Winston Grand Prize. For release summer 2014: Recording, "Beloved", a collection of classical arrangements spanning many languages, styles, and genres with violinist, Cara Schlecker and pianist, Myron Silberstein. For more information visit: www.christianketter.com

Among judges' comments: "Mr. Ketter presents a strong, deeply placed tenor voice."



3rd Place:
ANDREW SAUVAGEAU
Baltimore  MD
Andrew Sauvageau

Hailed by the Baltimore Sun for the shining color in his singing, Andrew Sauvageau, baritone, enjoys a diverse musical career, singing works written centuries ago as often as those written yesterday. His solo appearances include performances at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, the National Gallery of Art, the Library of Congress, the Kennedy Center, and the Lincoln Center. He has performed a variety of concerts on both sides of the country, including opera, oratorio, song, and the premieres of several new works by emerging American composers. Mr. Sauvageau is a graduate of Peabody Conservatory and University of Oregon. He has recorded two French rarities on the Naxos label with Opera Lafayette. Visit www.andrewsauvageau.com to discover more.

Among judges' comments: "Mr. Sauvageau is a strong performer with an instrument that is flexible as he moves from style to style."



SPECIAL JUDGES' CITATION: "Excellence in American Song" for "An American Tapestry"
PETER LIGHTFOOT
East Lansing  MI
Peter Lightfoot
Dramatic baritone Peter Lightfoot's "An American Tapestry" with pianist Dr. Deborah Moriarity, can now be heard on Blue Griffin Records. Lightfoot performed Falstaff in Verdi’s Falstaff in Cagli and Mercatello, Italy.  His performance of Marbuel at the Wexford Festival in The Devil and Kate is on DVD. Lightfoot was Bass soloist in Mozart's Requiem with Sir John Rutter at Carnegie Hall.

His operatic roles include Verdi's Macbeth; Tonio in Il Pagliacci; Scarpia in Tosca and Rigoletto in Verdi's Rigoletto.  His orchestral credits include the Stockholm Philharmonic, the Amsterdam Radio Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony, Houston Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and Dallas Symphony.

Mr. Lightfoot was born in New York and holds degrees from the Juilliard School and Tufts University. He is winner of a National Opera Institute Grant, a Sullivan Foundation Grant and a Harp Grant.  Earlier this year, Mr. Lightfoot won The American Prize Chicago Oratorio Award. He is associate professor of voice at Michigan State University's College of Music.

Among judges' comments: "Mr. Lightfoot is a seasoned and talented performer.  It is clear that this repertoire is dear to him and his interpretations are splendid."  

***
Congratulations!








VOCAL WINNERS: men in opera

Friedrich Schorr as Wotan, Bayreuth
The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up in the men's opera division of The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards, 2014. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize 
in Vocal Performance
Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
OPERA DIVISION

The American Prize winner:
MITCHELL HUTCHINGS
Houghton  NY
Mitchell Hutchings
Mitchell Hutchings’ most notable roles include the title roles in GIANNI SCHICCHI and SWEENEY TODD, Marcello in LA BOHÈME, Tarquinius in THE RAPE OF LUCRETIA, Escamillo in LA TRAGÉDIE DE CARMEN, Germont in LA TRAVIATA, Mercutio in ROMÉO ET JULIETTE, Marullo in RIGOLETTO, Quince in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, Frank in DIE FLEDERMAUS, Ben in THE TELEPHONE, Yamadori & the Commissioner in MADAMA BUTTERFLY, and Benoit & Alcindoro in LA BOHÈME. Mitchell has been a Resident Artist of Des Moines Metro Opera, Pensacola Opera, Opera Saratoga, Ash Lawn Opera, Dicapo Opera Theatre, the Opera Theatre and Music Festival of Lucca, the Czech-American Summer Music Institute, and Opera Tampa's V.O.I.C.Experience program. Mitchell received his master's degree from Florida State University and bachelor’s from Western Carolina University. He currently holds the position of Assistant Professor of Voice and Opera at The Greatbatch School of Music, Houghton College. www.MitchellHutchingsBaritone.com.

Among judges' comments: "Mr. Hutchins is very musical and sings with knowledgeable artistry."


2nd Place:
JOSEPH RYAN
Sarasota  FL
Joseph Ryan
Joseph Ryan graduated from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music with a Masters in Vocal Performance in 2006. He participated in young artist programs with Sarasota Opera, Central City Opera, St. Petersburg Opera, and the Opera Theatre of Lucca, Italy.  Most recently he performed as Alberich and Hagen with Opéra Louisiane in The Ring, a reduced version of Wagner’s Ring Cycle, and as Second Man in the Natchez Festival of Music’s 2013 production of Kiss Me, Kate. Other recent credits include Scarpia (cover) in St. Petersburg Opera’s production of Tosca in February 2013, the Sacristan in Tosca with Opera Naples in December 2012, and a semi-finalist in the 2012 Opera Birmingham Competition. Upcoming engagements include Morales in Opera Tampa’s 2014 production of Carmen and Sacristan in Natchez Festival of Music’s 2014 production of Tosca. For more information, please visit josephryanbaritone.com.

Among judges' comments: "Mr. Ryan’s voice is strong and resonant."


3rd Place:
ROCKY SELLERS
Memphis  TN
Rocky Sellers

Bass-Baritone, Rocky Sellers, has performed with various companies including: The Santa Fe Opera, Sarasota Opera, Regina Opera, Opera Naples, Opera Saratoga, The Natchez Festival of Music, Delaware Valley Opera Company, Dell'arte Opera Ensemble, The Manhattan Opera Studio, New York Lyric Opera, The Seoul International Program, the Manhattan School of Music Opera, and The University of Tennessee- Knoxville Opera. Mr. Sellers’ previous operatic credits show his wide dramatic range of both Bass repertoire as well as Bass- baritone. Roles including: Baron Ochs (Der Rosenkavalier), Banquo (MacBeth),  Dr. Bartolo/ Don Basilio (Il Barbiere di Siviglia) , Sparafucile/Monterone (Rigoletto), Leporello/ Commendatore (Don Giovanni) , Sarastro/ Papageno (The Magic Flute), Figaro/ Dr. Bartolo (Le Nozze di Figaro), Betto (Gianni Schicchi), Presto (Les Mamelles de Tiresias), Doctor Malatesta (Don Pasquale) and Wolfgang Big Bad (Three Little Pigs). He has received awards from The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, the Grady-Rayam Foundation (winner), The Kennett Symphony Voice competition (winner), The American Prize (3rd place) and NATS. His 2014-15 season includes his debut with Connecticut Lyric Opera in their productions of Der Rosenkavalier as Baron Ochs and La Boheme as Alcindoro in addition to his return to Regina Opera to sing the role of Dr. Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia. Mr. Sellers is a graduate of The University of Tennessee-Knoxville and pursued further studies at The Manhattan School of Music.

Among judges' comments: "He sings with great passion and expression."

***
Congratulations!








Wednesday, August 20, 2014

CHAMBER ENSEMBLE: Winners, runners-up

The American Prize is honored to announce the winner and runners-up of The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2014. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize 
in Chamber Music Performance, 2014:
The American Prize winner:
ATLANTA CHAMBER PLAYERS 
Atlanta  GA

Atlanta Chamber Players
The Atlanta Chamber Players, a mixed ensemble of strings, winds and piano, were founded in 1976 and are now planning their 39th Season. ACP has performed in 250+ cities throughout the US, Europe and Mexico and reached millions worldwide through live international radio broadcasts.

The ACP’s broad repertoire includes traditional masterpieces as well as contemporary classics. ACP also has a long-standing commitment to perform the music of living American composers, premiering almost 125 works to Atlanta audiences, including commissions from Michael Gandolfi, David Amram, Anne LeBaron, Adam Schoenberg, and three works from Pulitzer-Prize-winner John Harbison. To promote new chamber compositions for mixed ensemble, ACP launched “Rapido! A 14-day Composition Contest” in 2009. Rapido has expanded to all 50 states coast to coast, leading to the creation of 1000+ new works by composers of all ages and resulting in premiere performances in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas and San Francisco.

Among judge's comments: "Performances of contemporary pieces are particularly colorful and free; this stands as a wonderful complement to an equally superb ability to interpret musical styles within tonal common-practice music." 


2nd PLACE:
Musicians from soundSCAPE
Tony Arnold, Thomas Rosenkranz, Aiyun Huang 
St Joseph  MO 

Musicians from soundSCAPE
Musicians from soundSCAPE is a flexible ensemble comprised of performers from the festival faculty. Soprano Tony Arnold is a first-prize laureate of the Gaudeamus International Competition (NL). Since winning the Classical Fellowship Award from the American Pianists Association, Thomas Rosenkranz has pursued an active performance career on four continents. Percussionist Aiyun Huang was the first-prize and Audience Award winner at the 2002 Geneva International Competition. The soundSCAPE festival facilitates the flowering of new music and the exchange of ideas and culture between musicians of tomorrow's generation. Each summer in idyllic Maccagno, Italy, the festival attracts composers and performers from around the world for two weeks of concerts, lectures, master classes and workshops. The essence of the festival is process and collaboration - soundSCAPE has been the starting point for new music initiatives that have flourished long beyond the festival, all around the globe. soundSCAPE is directed by Nathanael May.

Among judges' comments:  "The collaborative performance is superb, exhibiting balanced sound among all ensemble members, rhythmic precision, and musical expression suitable for the language of the compositions evaluated."


3rd PLACE:
La'Ventus Quartet
Alyssa Hoffert, Lauren Wasynczuk, Ben Carraher, Li-Chun Hsiao 
Hartford  CT

La'Ventus Quartet
La'Ventus Saxophone Quartet was formed in 2012 in Hartford, Connecticut. Alyssa Hoffert (soprano), Lauren Wasynczuk (alto), Ben Carraher (tenor) and Li-Chun Hsiao (baritone), met at the Hartt School having come from different parts of the country and the world.

The name, La'Ventus, derives from the Latin words "Latus," meaning "side" and "Ventus," meaning "wind." La'Ventus Quartet, therefore, means "Wind from four sides." La'Ventus is dedicated to combining classical, contemporary, standard, and new music to create a unique sound and a fresh perspective with the versatility and flexibility inherent in a saxophone quartet.

In addition to performing throughout Connecticut, La’Ventus has presented performances throughout the United States and Italy. As an ensemble, they are committed to the advancement of saxophone quartet repertoire and have commissioned and premiered new works by composers including Matthew Kennedy, Daniel Morel, and Thomas Schuttenhelm. 

Among judges' comments: "Musicianship, technical mastery, and collaborative unity are very strong; the ensemble is able to sound as if it operates as one polyphonic instrument much of the time."


***

Congratulations!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

PIANO WINNERS: college/university & high school solo divisions


The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up of The American Prize in Piano Performance, 2014, College/University & High School Divisions.

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Piano Performance (SOLO), 2014—COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
HYUNKI YOON   Kansas City  MO
Schumann, Beethoven, Prokofiev, Bach

Hyunki Yoon
Hyunki Yoon, pianist, is a native of Seoul, Republic of Korea.  He completed a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance as a scholarship recipient at Chugye University for the Arts in Seoul.  Winner of the 1999 Eumyun Piano Competition and the 1998 Music Education Newspaper Competition, he has participated in concerts as soloist, chamber musician, and accompanist in Germany, Korea, and the United States.  He completed a Master of Music degree in piano performance as a full scholarship recipient at University of Missouri-Columbia.  As a graduate teaching assistant there he accompanied Show-Me Opera productions and taught applied piano class. He performed the Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 1 with the MU Philharmonic Orchestra at the Missouri Theatre in 2011 and received Runner-up in the Missouri Music Teachers Association's (MMTA) Collegiate Honors Auditions in 2011 and 2012. In 2013 he was featured an Emerging Artist Competition winner at the Missouri Theatre.

He is currently pursuing a Doctor or Musical Arts in piano performance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where he studies with Dr. Robert Weirich and receives full support for his entire doctoral program.

Among judges' comments: "...marvelous mood and spirit..." 


2nd Place:
GABRIELLE CHOU   Pembroke Pines  FL
Chopin, Ravel, Rachmaninoff, Beethoven


Gabrielle Chou
Pianist and violinist Gabrielle Chou has played on both instruments with numerous orchestras, including the Ars Flores Symphony Orchestra, Mihail Jora Philharmonic Orchestra of Bacau, and National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra. She is currently in her first year of undergraduate studies at the Juilliard School, where she studies piano with Jerome Lowenthal and violin with Lewis Kaplan. Her past studies include the Colburn Young Artists Academy in Los Angeles.

Gabrielle was the silver medal winner at the 6th Yamaha USASU International Senior Piano Competition, whose jury included legendary pianist Martha Argerich. She also received top prizes at the Young Composers’ Challenge, 10th Ettlingen International Competition for Young Pianists, NFMC National Composition Competition, 2nd Manchester International Piano Concerto Competition, and 21st Concorso Internazionale per Pianoforte e Orchestra Citta Di Cantu. Past festivals include the Aspen Music Festival and School, where she was a piano student and later a two-year violin fellow.

Among judges' comments: "...a wonderfully fluid technique and relaxed physical approach to the piano..." 

3rd Place:
INHYUN LEE   Brookline  MA
Bach, Haydn, Schumann, Bartok (Sonata)


Inhyun Lee
Inhyun Lee started piano at the age of five in her native South Korea. She studied under Alexander Korsantia at NEC, Young-lim Ham, Hae-lim Kim and Na-young Kim, and currently is pursing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Boston University under Professor Pavel Nerssesian. Miss Lee was the winner in the American Protégé international piano competition in 2011 and performed at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in 2011. Also, she received third prize in the 1st International Keyboard Odyssiad & Festival in 2012. As an enthusiastic and passionate performer, she has presented many recitals and performed as soloist with many orchestras in major concert halls in Seoul, Gwangju (South Korea), Tokyo, New York, Boston, Aspen (United States), Italy and etc. She studied under John O’Conor at the Aspen Music School. She has also performed in masterclasses of John Perry, Joseph Kalichstein, Dang Tai son, Gary Graffman and Anton Nel.

Among judges' comments: "Excellent and well-prepared fugue with clear voicing throughout."



The American Prize in Piano Performance (SOLO), 2014—HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
WILLIAM HUME   Carlisle  PA
Bach, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Lutolawski
William Hume
17 year old William Hume is a senior at Carlisle High School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and has studied piano for over ten years.  He has won various awards and competitions and has performed at the Kennedy Center, Weill Recital Hall, and on the National Public Radio Program “From the Top.” He was recently named a 2014 National YoungArts Foundation Winner.  William has performed as a soloist with several orchestras, playing concerti by Mozart, Bach, Grieg and Beethoven.  His other interests include basketball, running and writing, and he has earned a varsity letter in Cross Country and a Gold Key Award in the Scholastic Art and Writing Contest.  He is a member of the National Honor Society and volunteers as pianist at area nursing homes and the Salvation Army.  He is a student of Dr. Jennifer Blyth.         http://williamhume.com/

Among judges' comments: "...exquisite dialogue and or voicing between the hands..."



2nd Place:
BENJAMIN GITTENS   Mason  OH
Liszt, Scriabin, Beethoven, Rochberg
Benjamin Gittens
Benjamin Gittens is an accomplished pianist from Mason, Ohio. Benjamin has won numerous competitions, including First Prize at the DePauw Young Artists Piano Competition in 2013, First Prize in the Southwest Ohio Pre-Collegiate Buckeye Competition in 2012 and 2013, and First Prize in the Concerto competition for Keyboard Division which gave him the opportunity to perform as a soloist with the Blue Ash Montgomery Symphony Orchestra in 2013. He was a winner in the Dayton Public Radio Young Talent Search in 2013 and he has won several Merit Awards for piano institute attendance including the Ohio Federation of Music Club Scholarship for the Art of the Piano at the College – Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati and Merit Scholarship Awards for the University of Indiana Summer Piano Academy and Bowling Green State University Summer Piano Institute.  He currently studies with Dr. Jackson Leung from Wright State University.

Among judges' comments: "...excellent performance with clearly articulated fugue subject and artistically shaped musical phrases..."



3rd Place:
CHRISTOPHER SON RICHARDSON   Lake Forest Park  WA
Haydn, Bach, Chopin, Beethoven
Christopher Son Richardson

Christopher is a student of Duane Hulbert. He has appeared on NPR's "From the Top", KRCB 91.1 and KCTS 9 as a featured performer. Performing at the Finney Chapel in the Cooper International Festival's Artist Recital Series, his performance was broadcast live on WCLV 104.9. Selected as one of 2013 scholarship winners at the National Chopin Foundation, and a finalist at Curtis Institute 2012, he has performed in prestigious venues, including Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, the 2000 seat Music Tent (Opening Sarah Chang concert), McCallum Theater. He was a prizewinner at the 2013 International e-piano and played with the Minnesota Orchestra, second prizewinner at 2011 Virginia Waring Concerto, Tureck International Bach, 2012 LA Liszt International. He won first prize 2011 Seattle International Piano, at the International Russian Competitions (2012,2013), Ross McKee, Berkeley Etude Club, Pacific Musical Society. He won third prize at the 2012 Lennox International Young Artists Concerto.

Among judges' comments: "...a spirited Bach tempo full of life and joy!"

*****

Congratulations to all!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

ORCHESTRA: finalist ensembles

The American Prize is pleased to announce FINALIST orchestras for 2014 in all categories. Congratulations! All finalists receive written evaluations.

To know the exact date when WINNERS, runners-up and any citation recipients will be announced next month, please like our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter #AmericanPrize, where that information will be published first.

Please make us aware of any misprints in the listings below by emailing: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Orchestral Performance (professional division)

Jason Lim   McKinney & Frisco, TX
   Odysseus Chamber Orchestra
   Stravinsky, Piazzolla
Nan Harrison Washburn   Plymouth, MI
   Michigan Philharmonic
   Respighi, Brahms, Chambers
Diane Wittry   Allentown, PA
   Allentown Symphony Orchestra
   Corigliano, Ravel, Brahms, Holst

The American Prize in Orchestral Performance (college/university division)
"A very tight and exciting race in the College/University division. Despite differences in size and repertoire (some of it truly mighty, indeed), fine orchestras, all."—DK

Tiffany Chang   Boston, MA
   New England Repertory Orchestra
   Beethoven, Brahms, Haydn, Schumann, Elgar
Stephen Heyde   Waco, TX
   Baylor Symphony Orchestra
   Strauss—Ein Heldenleben
Chris Younghoon Kim   Ithaca, NY
   Cornell Symphony Orchestra
   Barber—Symphony No. 1
Ruth Lin   St.Peter, MN
   Gustavus Symphony Orchestra
   Brahms, Rimsky-Korsakov
Hajime Teri Murai   Baltimore, MD
   Peabody Concert Orchestra
   Prokofiev—Romeo and Juliet
Robert H. Olson   Kansas City, MO
   Conservatory Orchestra, UMKC
   Stravinsky—Le Sacre du printemps, Chen Yi
Bruce Uchimura   Kalamazoo, MI
   Western Michigan U. Symphony Orchestra
   Tchaikovsky, Mendelssohn, Weber, Hindemith, Debussy

The American Prize in Orchestral Performance (community orchestra division)

Donald L. Appert   Vancouver, WA
   Clark College Orchestra
   Elgar, Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff
David Bernard   New York, NY
   Park Avenue Chamber Symphony
   Bartok, Tchaikovsky, Beethoven
Anna Edwards   Seattle, WA
   Seattle Collaborative Orchestra
   Bruch, Higdon
Lois Ferrari    Austin,TX
   Austin Civic Orchestra
   Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Holst, Marquez
Howard  Hsu   Valdosta, GA
   Valdosta Symphony Orchestra
   Tchaikovsky—Symphony No. 5
Elliot Moore   Detroit, MI
   Detroit Medical Orchestra
   Brahms, Respighi, Mahler
Ivan Shulman   Los Angeles, CA
   Los Angeles Doctors Symphony Orchestra
   Donizetti, Puccini, Mozart, Delibes, Wagner, more
Charles Salembier   Waynesboro, VA
   Waynesboro Symphony Orchestra
   All Brahms
Bryce Seliger   Forest Grove, OR
   Pacific Philharmonic
   Holst, Williams, Mendelssohn
Toru Tagawa   Tucson, AZ
   Tucson Repertory Orchestra
   Dvorak, Strauss, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky
Zoe Zeniodi   Miami, FL
   Alhambra Orchestra
   Tchaikovsky—Symphony No. 5

The American Prize in Orchestral Performance (high school orchestra division)

David DeVoto   Allen, TX
   Allen High School Orchestra
   Holst, Rimsky-Korskov, Williams, Tchaikovsky
Jonathan Handman   LaGrangeville, NY
   Arlington HS Philharmonia
   Dvorak, Elgar, Tchaikovsky
Shira Katsman   Bellevue, WA
   Interlake HS Chamber Orchestra
   Grieg, Tchaikovsky
Ryan Ross  Plano, TX    
   Jasper HS Legacy Orchestra
   Elgar, Beethoven, Dvorak, Haydn, Rachmaninoff

The American Prize in Orchestral Performance (youth orchestra division)

Suzette Battan   Tucson, AZ
   Tucson Philharmonia Youth Orchestra
   Elgar, Tchaikovsky, Strauss, Rimsky-Korsakov
Alyze Dreiling   San Diego, CA
   YPO Soloist Ensemble
   Vaughan Williams, Hailstork
Jonathan Handman   Poughkeepsie, NY
   Vivace of Stringendo
   Mozart, Vaughan Williams
Ralph T. Jackson
   Bridle Path/Montgomery Select String Ensemble
   Jenkins, Rossini, Anderson, more
Michael Webster   Houston, TX
   Houston Youth Symphony
   Mahler, Tchaikovsky
  
***
Congratulations, all!

Friday, August 15, 2014

2014 PIANO WINNERS, RUNNERS-UP: Solo (high school division)


The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up of The American Prize in Piano Performance, 2014, High School Division.

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Piano Performance (SOLO), 2014—HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
WILLIAM HUME   Carlisle  PA
Bach, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Lutolawski
William Hume
17 year old William Hume is a senior at Carlisle High School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and has studied piano for over ten years.  He has won various awards and competitions and has performed at the Kennedy Center, Weill Recital Hall, and on the National Public Radio Program “From the Top.” He was recently named a 2014 National YoungArts Foundation Winner.  William has performed as a soloist with several orchestras, playing concerti by Mozart, Bach, Grieg and Beethoven.  His other interests include basketball, running and writing, and he has earned a varsity letter in Cross Country and a Gold Key Award in the Scholastic Art and Writing Contest.  He is a member of the National Honor Society and volunteers as pianist at area nursing homes and the Salvation Army.  He is a student of Dr. Jennifer Blyth.         http://williamhume.com/

Among judges' comments: "...exquisite dialogue and or voicing between the hands..."



2nd Place:
BENJAMIN GITTENS   Mason  OH
Liszt, Scriabin, Beethoven, Rochberg
Benjamin Gittens
Benjamin Gittens is an accomplished pianist from Mason, Ohio. Benjamin has won numerous competitions, including First Prize at the DePauw Young Artists Piano Competition in 2013, First Prize in the Southwest Ohio Pre-Collegiate Buckeye Competition in 2012 and 2013, and First Prize in the Concerto competition for Keyboard Division which gave him the opportunity to perform as a soloist with the Blue Ash Montgomery Symphony Orchestra in 2013. He was a winner in the Dayton Public Radio Young Talent Search in 2013 and he has won several Merit Awards for piano institute attendance including the Ohio Federation of Music Club Scholarship for the Art of the Piano at the College – Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati and Merit Scholarship Awards for the University of Indiana Summer Piano Academy and Bowling Green State University Summer Piano Institute.  He currently studies with Dr. Jackson Leung from Wright State University.

Among judges' comments: "...excellent performance with clearly articulated fugue subject and artistically shaped musical phrases..."



3rd Place:
CHRISTOPHER SON RICHARDSON   Lake Forest Park  WA
Haydn, Bach, Chopin, Beethoven
Christopher Son Richardson

Christopher is a student of Duane Hulbert. He has appeared on NPR's "From the Top", KRCB 91.1 and KCTS 9 as a featured performer. Performing at the Finney Chapel in the Cooper International Festival's Artist Recital Series, his performance was broadcast live on WCLV 104.9. Selected as one of 2013 scholarship winners at the National Chopin Foundation, and a finalist at Curtis Institute 2012, he has performed in prestigious venues, including Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, the 2000 seat Music Tent (Opening Sarah Chang concert), McCallum Theater. He was a prizewinner at the 2013 International e-piano and played with the Minnesota Orchestra, second prizewinner at 2011 Virginia Waring Concerto, Tureck International Bach, 2012 LA Liszt International. He won first prize 2011 Seattle International Piano, at the International Russian Competitions (2012,2013), Ross McKee, Berkeley Etude Club, Pacific Musical Society. He won third prize at the 2012 Lennox International Young Artists Concerto.

Among judges' comments: "...a spirited Bach tempo full of life and joy!"

*****

Congratulations to all!

2014 PIANO WINNERS, RUNNERS-UP: solo (professional division)


The American Prize is honored to announce the winners, runners-up and citation recipient of The American Prize in Piano Performance, 2014, professional division.

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Piano Performance (SOLO), 2014—PROFESSIONAL DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
NASSIB NASSAR   Chapel Hill  NC
Brahms Third Piano Sonata (f minor)
Nassib Nassar
Nassib Nassar started playing the piano at the age of five with guidance from his father, who had studied under Zvart Sarkissian, a pupil of Marguerite Long.  At the age of 16 he began formal study with Francis Whang at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Nassar has performed the 32 piano sonatas of Beethoven in chronological order, in a series of seven recitals, and his recordings have been featured on WCPE radio.  He teaches privately in Chapel Hill.   www.nassarpiano.com

Among judges' comments: "The chords are masculine and richly colored, the sound is deep, the bass is always full and cantilenas always beautifully phrased."



2nd Place:
PETER MIYAMOTO  Columbia MO
all Brahms program, including Handel Variations
Peter Miyamoto

Peter Miyamoto enjoys a brilliant international career, performing to great acclaim in Canada, England, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Switzerland, China, and Japan, and in major US cities such as Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington D.C.  In 1990, Miyamoto was named the first Gilmore Young Artist.  He won numerous other competitions, including the APA National Fellowship Competition, the D’Angelo Competition, the SF Symphony Competition and the LA Philharmonic Competition.  Dr. Miyamoto holds degrees from the Curtis Institute of Music, Yale School of Music, Michigan State University, and the Royal Academy of Music.  Miyamoto’s principal teachers included Maria Curcio-Diamand, Leon Fleisher, Claude Frank, Peter Frankl, and Ralph Votapek.  Currently on faculty at the University of Missouri, Miyamoto formerly taught at Michigan State University, and the California Institute of the Arts, and is head of the keyboard area at the NY Summer Music Festival.

Among judges' comments: "There is a rich palette of sounds on this recording, from intimate whisper to the fully orchestral, “triumphant” sound so typical of Brahms’ piano music."


3rd Place:
JASON CHIU   El Cerrito  CA
Chopin Ballades
Jason Chiu

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Jason Chiu has been performing on the piano since an early age. He has received numerous prizes in local competitions, including first place in the East Bay Music Festival and the Memorial Scholarship Competition as part of the Music Teacher’s Association of California. While attending U.C. Berkeley, where he received his B.A. in Music, he performed as a soloist with the University Symphony Orchestra, and was a recipient of the Eisner Award for achievement in the creative arts. Jason earned his Master of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in 2004, studying with Sharon Mann. Since graduating, he has been teaching piano at local music studios and performing arts centers, as well as giving performances in venues all over the Bay Area.   

Among judges' comments: "...many original interpretative ideas and a very individualistic way of listening."


CITATION RECIPIENT: 
"Championing the music of Cecile Chaminade"
JULIA MORTYAKOVA   Columbus  MS
Julia Mortyakova
Julia Mortyakova has performed solo recitals and concertos around the world.  Music festival appearances include: Assisi Performing Arts (Italy), Musica Nueva Malaga (Spain), Zhytomyr's Musical Spring (Ukraine), and Natchez Festival of Music.  She was the 2012 winner of the Sigma Alpha Iota Career Performance Grant.  2013 included solo recitals throughout the United States, Italy, and concerto appearances with the Assisi Festival Orchestra (Italy) and the Starkville Symphony Orchestra.

Dr. Mortyakova is a graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy, Vanderbilt University, New York University, and the University of Miami.  Additional study includes Aspen Music Festival, Eastern Music Festival, South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts, and Symphonic Workshops International Piano Masterclass (Bulgaria).

Dr. Mortyakova currently serves as Chair of the Department of Music at the Mississippi University for Women.  Her research includes applying the existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre to piano teaching, and the life and music of Cécile Chaminade and Olga Harris.

*****

Congratulations to all!

2014 PIANO WINNERS, RUNNERS-UP: Concerto


The American Prize is honored to announce the winners and runners-up of The American Prize in Piano Performance, Concerto Division, 2014.

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog.  

Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Piano Performance (CONCERTO), 2014—PROFESSIONAL DIVISION:

The American Prize winner:
KASANDRA KEELING   San Antonio  TX 
(Rachmaninoff—Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini)
Kasandra Keeling
Dr. Kasandra Keeling is currently Associate Professor and Chair of Keyboard Studies at the University of Texas at San Antonio.  As a soloist, collaborative artist, and teacher, she has traveled throughout the US, Mexico, Canada, and China.  In 2007, she was invited to be a visiting professor at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China, as well as at Nanjing Normal University in Nanjing.  She has performed at Steinway Hall in NYC, at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto, Canada, and at the Teatro de Jalisco in Guadalajara, Mexico, as well as numerous universities, festivals, conferences, and private venues across the US.   In 2008, Dr. Keeling was awarded the Outstanding Collegiate Teaching Achievement Award by the Texas Music Teachers Association.   She received degrees in performance from the University of Houston and the University of Colorado at Boulder and her primary teachers were Janice Hodges, Nancy Weems, Alvin Chow, and Larry Graham.  

Among judges' comments: "The performance was seasoned and artistic..."



2nd Place:
WILLIAM HUME   Carlisle  PA 
Grieg A Minor Concerto, Beethoven Choral Fantasy
William Hume

17 year old William Hume is a senior at Carlisle High School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and has studied piano for over ten years.  He has won various awards and competitions and has performed at the Kennedy Center, Weill Recital Hall, and on the National Public Radio Program “From the Top.” He was recently named a 2014 National YoungArts Foundation Winner.  William has performed as a soloist with several orchestras, playing concerti by Mozart, Bach, Grieg and Beethoven.  His other interests include basketball, running and writing, and he has earned a varsity letter in Cross Country and a Gold Key Award in the Scholastic Art and Writing Contest.  He is a member of the National Honor Society and volunteers as pianist at area nursing homes and the Salvation Army.  He is a student of Dr. Jennifer Blyth.      http://williamhume.com/

Among judges' comments: "Beautiful tone and projected melody..."



3rd Place
HYUNKI YOON   Kansas City  MO  
Prokofiev First Concerto
Hyunki Yoon
Hyunki Yoon, pianist, is a native of Seoul, Republic of Korea.  He completed a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance as a scholarship recipient at Chugye University for the Arts in Seoul.  Winner of the 1999 Eumyun Piano Competition and the 1998 Music Education Newspaper Competition, he has participated in concerts as soloist, chamber musician, and accompanist in Germany, Korea, and the United States.  He completed a Master of Music degree in piano performance as a full scholarship recipient at University of Missouri-Columbia.  As a graduate teaching assistant there he accompanied Show-Me Opera productions and taught applied piano class.  He performed the Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 1 with the MU Philharmonic Orchestra at the Missouri Theatre in 2011 and received Runner-up in the Missouri Music Teachers Association's (MMTA) Collegiate Honors Auditions in 2011 and 2012. In 2013 he was featured an Emerging Artist Competition winner at the Missouri Theatre.

He is currently pursuing a Doctor or Musical Arts in piano performance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where he studies with Dr. Robert Weirich and receives full support for his entire doctoral program.

Among judges' comments: "performed...with much aristocratic musical spirit..."

***

Congratulations to all!