Wednesday, December 7, 2016

WINNERS: The American Prize in Voice (women in art song), 2016, ALL DIVISIONS

The American Prize is honored to announce the winners, runners-up, citation and honorable mention recipients of The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016—The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award, in all divisions. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog. Please use the chronological tool in the right-hand column to find specific results.

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

The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award honors the memory of the greatest Wagnerian baritone of his age, Friedrich Schorr, who commanded the operatic stage between the world wars, and his wife, Virginia Schorr, who taught studio voice at the Manhattan School of Music and the Hartt School of Music for nearly fifty years. The Prize recognizes and rewards the best performances by classically trained vocalists in America in 2016, based on submitted recordings.

The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(professional division)

The American Prize winner: "OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE in Art Song & Oratorio"
MARGARET LIAS
Boston MA
MARGARET LIAS
Mezzo-soprano, Margaret Lias, has been celebrated for her “warm,” “arresting,” and “rich-toned” singing. Since her Boston Symphony Hall debut in 2011 with Handel and Haydn Society, Margaret has been a frequent soloist under the baton of Harry Christophers. In 2015, Margaret received praise for her Lincoln Center solo debut singing Mozart’s Requiem. Select solo appearances in 2016 and 2017 include Princeton Pro Musica, Handel Society of Dartmouth, Arcadia Players, Cleveland Orchestra, and Emmanuel Music. Margaret was a founding member of The Skylark Vocal Ensemble under Matthew Guard. She performs frequently with Seraphic Fire under Patrick Dupré Quigley, Boston Baroque under Martin Pearlman, Voices of Ascension under Dennis Keene, Sacred Music in a Sacred Space under K. Scott Warren, Emmanuel Music under Ryan Turner, and Musica Sacra New York under Kent Tritle. This season, Margaret is thrilled to add New York City Opera Renaissance chorus to her roster of ensembles. www.margaretlias.com


2nd PLACE (there was a tie):
MELISA BONETTI
Cincinnati OH
MELISA BONETTI
Melisa Bonetti, Mezzo-soprano, just completed the Dayton Opera Artist in Residence program in which she made her Dayton Opera Mainstage debut as Emilia in Otello. After enjoying her time as a young artist with the Des Moines Metro Opera 2015 summer festival in which she played the role of Isabela in Catan's La Hija de Rappaccini, "Melisa Bonetti commanded a wonderful presence in the lower middle voice but also easily soared heavenward with a well-schooled top" - Opera Today, Ms.Bonetti will return to sing with the company this Summer in the roles of Maria Maddalena and Scribe in Glass' Galileo Galilei. After a full season with Kentucky Opera last year, Melisa returned earlier this season to sing Marcellina for their Nozze di Figaro concert tour. During her work with Kentucky Opera last year Ms. Bonetti performed Lorca Ainadamar, a production with the Lexington Philharmonic, Clare in Daron Hagen's new work, A Woman in Morocco, Flora La Traviata, Wowkle La Fanciulla del West, & Mexican Flower Woman Streetcar Named Desire. Since completing her Master’s in voice at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, she has also worked with the Dayton Philharmonic, Opera Columbus, Cincinnati Opera Outreach and Chorus, and the Queens Symphony Orchestra. During her summer's as a Master's student she participated in the Wolf Trap Opera studio artist program and in I Sing Beijing as a young artist. She completed her undergraduate degree at Queens College's Aaron Copland School of Music in New York.
www.MelisaBonettiMezzo.com


2nd PLACE (there was a tie):
STELLA DAYRIT RODEN
Warrensburg MO
STELLA DAYRIT RODEN
Stella Dayrit Roden, soprano, has performed as a featured soloist with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, New Britain Symphony, and the Connecticut Virtuosi.   As Resident Artist with the Wichita Grand Opera, she performed the role of 'Cousin' in Puccini's Madama Butterfly and served as a member of the opera chorus for the 2011 season.  In the summers of 2012 and 2013, she performed several concerts in Florence, Italy, a series sponsored by Accademia Europea di Firenze and Misericordia di Firenze, Piazza Duomo. Stella Roden received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Connecticut, a Master of Music degree, Vocal Performance from New England Conservatory, and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from James Madison University.  Dr. Roden has also been a finalist in prestigious competitions such as the Connecticut Opera Guild, the Austin Lyric Young Artist's Competition, and the NATSAA New England Regional Division Competition.


3rd PLACE (there was a tie):
SARAH NELSON CRAFT
Brooklyn NY
SARAH NELSON CRAFT
Mezzo-soprano Sarah Nelson Craft’s commanding, versatile voice most recently brought her to Paris where she participated in The Song Continues: Paris Residency, performing in recitals and working closely with Marilyn Horne and Martin Katz. Performances this season include Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the American Classical Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall and Vivaldi’s Gloria with the Masterworks Festival Chorus at Carnegie Hall. In 2013 Ms. Craft made her mainstage debut with the Caramoor Festival as Ninetta in Verdi’s Les vêpres siciliennes and was noted as a “young singer to watch out for”. She has been a soloist at Avery Fisher Hall in Bach’s Mass in B minor and Handel’s Messiah with the National Chorale, and in Mahler’s Symphony No.2 with the New Jersey Festival Orchestra. In 2016 Carnegie Hall will present Ms. Craft in a solo Spotlight Recital with pianist Warren Jones at Weill Recital Hall.  www.sarahnelsoncraft.com


3rd PLACE (there was a tie):
MARGOT ROOD
East Boston MA
MARGOT ROOD
Soprano Margot Rood, hailed for her “luminosity and grace” by The New York Times, performs a wide range of repertoire. Recent and upcoming solo appearances include those with Cleveland Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, New World Symphony, Handel and Haydn Society, Seraphic Fire, A Far Cry, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Blue Heron, Cape Symphony, Bach Collegium San Diego, Grand Harmonie, as well as onstage with Boston Early Music Festival, Monadnock Music, St. Petersburg Opera, Helios Early Opera and Green Mountain Opera Festival. Ms. Rood is the recipient of prestigious awards including the St. Botolph Emerging Artist Award (2015), and the Lorraine Hunt Lieberson Fellowship at Emmanuel Music (2015). Ms. Rood is a core member of Lorelei Ensemble, Boston's 9-voice women's ensemble. Her new solo recording with composer Heather Gilligan, Living in Light, will be released in 2017. Ms. Rood holds degrees from the University of Michigan and McGill University. www.margotrood.com


FINALIST—SPECIAL CITATION: "Outstanding Performance in Art Song"
RACHEL JOSELSON
Iowa City IA
RACHEL JOSELSON
While still a university student in voice performance, Rachel Joselson performed with the Indianapolis and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras. Her first full-time operatic contract was in Darmstadt, Germany, singing roles as Rosina, Dorabella, Cherubino, Adalgisa and Idamante before switching to soprano repertoire during her years at Hamburg State Opera. She has performed with symphony orchestras in Cedar Rapids, Madison, Oshkosh, and Johnson City, and was featured with the Utah Festival Opera with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra in Salt Lake City. Joselson was invited to Leipzig, Germany, where she presented a lecture and master classes about American song composers at a convention for the German Association of Voice Teachers International Convention. In Halle, she taught a master class on bel canto technique and was an artist-in-residence at the Asolo Song Festival and Institute in Italy. Ms. Joselson received her Doctor of Musical Arts Degree from Rutgers University.


FINALIST—SPECIAL CITATION: "Outstanding Performance in Oratorio"
ROSALIND LEE
Oak Park IL
ROSALIND LEE
Rosalind Lee, soprano, has been described as "a beautiful soprano with a glowing voice." She has appeared as the soprano soloist in Bach’s Magnificat, Brahms' Ein Deutsches Requiem, Gounod’s St. Cecilia Mass, Haydn’s Paukenmesse and Lord Nelson Mass, Mozart’s Vesperae solennes de confessore, Orff’s Carmina burana, Schubert’s Mass in G, Mollicone’s Beatitude Mass, and Vivaldi's Gloria. She's appeared as a soloist with groups such as the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Bach Week Festival, Chorus Angelorum, Elgin Choral Union, Handel Week Festival, North Shore Choral Society, Fort Wayne Philharmonic and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in their Kraft Family Concert series. Ms. Lee has also covered soprano solos in Beethoven's Missa solemnis, Mendelssohn's Elijah, Orff's Carmina Burana, and Verdi's Requiem for the CSO. On the opera stage, she has appeared at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Glimmerglass Festival, Bloomington Early Music Festival, Music by the Lake, and Light Opera Works, among others. (http://www.rosalind-lee.com)


FINALIST—SPECIAL CITATION: "Outstanding Performance in Music before 1800"
ELISABETH MARSHALL
Portland ME
ELISABETH MARSHALL
Elisabeth Marshall has been praised by OPERA NEWS for her “radiant soprano” on the Brooklyn Art Song Society’s recent album New Voices (Roven Records, 2015). Concert highlights include Messiah at Chicago’s Symphony Center, Bach’s Mattëuspassion under Helmuth Rilling (Oregon Bach Festival), Beethoven’s Choral Fantasia with CBE Raymond Leppard (Indianapolis Symphony), and Mozart’s Requiem at Rochester Cathedral (England). On the opera stage, she has been hailed for her performances as the Queen of the Night in Mozart’s The Magic Flute in London, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, Elisetta in Il matrimonio segreto, and Rosabella in The Most Happy Fella. Other engagements include the Wexford Festival Opera, the London Philharmonia Chorus, and Carmel Bach Festival. A Fulbright grant recipient to the HMT-Leipzig (Germany), Ms. Marshall holds a Doctor of Music degree from Indiana University, where she studied with Carol Vaness, and, in addition to her active performing career, currently serves on the voice faculty at the University of Southern Maine School of Music. www.elisabethmarshall.com


FINALIST—HONORABLE MENTION: Exceptional Repertoire
DANA ZENOBI
Austin TX
DANA ZENOBI
Winner of an Inspiration in Teaching Citation from The American Prize (2014), Dana Zenobi is a versatile performer who embraces traditional repertoire and new music.  She has appeared in concert with ensembles including Austin Civic Orchestra, San Gabriel Chorale, and Austin Chamber Ensemble. On the operatic stage, she appeared in Austin Opera’s American Premiere of Waiting for the Barbarians (Philip Glass), and with Lyric Opera Cleveland in the first production of Mark Adamo’s Little Women directed by Adamo. The Cleveland Plain Dealer praised her “dazzling coloratura” and “irresitible phrasing” as Mabel (The Pirates of Penzance). She has garnered similar success in roles ranging from Mozart heroines to Verdi’s Violetta Valéry.  Dr. Zenobi joined the faculty at Southwestern University in 2007.  She is executive director of BELTÀ (www.BELTA.org), a nonprofit that supports emerging artists. She holds degrees from The University of Texas at Austin (DMA and MM) and Duke University (BA). www.danazenobi.com


CAREER ENCOURAGEMENT CERTIFICATE 
TERESA WINNER BLUME
Needham MA
TERESA WINNER BLUME
Teresa Winner Blume, lyric coloratura, performs frequently in recital, oratorio, opera, musical theatre, and in collaboration with composers of new works. She was recently featured in the U.S. premiere of Lee Mingwei: Sonic Blossom at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, singing Schubert lieder. Past performances include Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem (Connecticut Choral Society; Brevard Music Center), Carmina Burana (Canton Symphony Orchestra, Gerhardt Zimmermann, conductor), and Le Nozze di Figaro conducted by Grant Llewellyn at the North Carolina Symphony. Awards include New York Oratorio Society Competition (semi-finalist, 2015), the Peter Elvins Competition (semi-finalist, 2015); National Association of Teachers of Singing Artist Awards (National semi-finalist, 2010), and the Jesse Kneisel Lieder Award (Eastman School). She serves as Head of Voice at Walnut Hill School for the Arts, as voice faculty at Gordon College, and maintains a private studio. B.M. University of Illinois; M.M. and Performer’s Certificate Eastman School of Music. www.TeresaWinnerBlume.com


HONORABLE MENTION
KIRSTEN KUNKLE
Wilmington DE
KIRSTEN KUNKLE
Kirsten C. Kunkle, soprano, originally from Fremont, Ohio, currently resides in Wilmington, Delaware. Her recordings are collected at the Library of Congress, the National Museum of the American Indian at the Smithsonian Institution, and the Merkel Area Museum in Merkel, Texas.  She is on the list of Classical Native American Artists and Musicians at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian. She won the 2014 PA NATSAA competition, became the youngest inductee into the Fremont Ross Music Hall of Fame in 2011, and recently made her solo Carnegie Hall debut. Some favorite roles performed are Mimì (La bohème), Rosalinde (Die Fledermaus) Iolanta and Brigitta (Iolanta), Zemphira (Aleko), Lisa (Pique Dame), Foreign Woman (The Consul), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Laetitia (The Old Maid and the Thief), and the Witch (Hansel and Gretel).  Her degrees are from Bowling Green State University and University of Michigan. www.kirstenckunkle.com  

The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(college/university division)

The American Prize winner:
SAMANTHA SCHMID
Boston MA
SAMANTHA SCHMID
Samantha Schmid, lyric soprano—dedicates herself to exploring culture and communication. This season, Schmid makes her debut with Juventas New Music Ensemble as Constance in the premiere of Leo Hurley’s The Body Politic. She also appears as Donna Elvira with Opera in the Ozarks. A champion of contemporary and Slavic music, Schmid has recently performed with Russian Opera Workshop, Lowell House Opera, and the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras. Previous engagements include Tina (Flight), Iolanta (Iolanta), Liza (The Queen of Spades), Iphigénie (Iphigénie en Tauride), The Fox (The Cunning Little Vixen), and Erste Dame (Die Zauberflöte). Recognition for her artistry includes inauguration into the Pi Kappa Lambda national music honor society and multiple awards from NATS. A student of Dr. Kerry Deal, Schmid recently received her Professional Studies Certificate and M.M. in vocal performance from The Boston Conservatory. She also holds a B.A. from Webster University. For more information, visit www.samanthaschmid.com.


2nd PLACE:
OLIVIA BOEN
Chicago IL
OLIVIA BOEN
Heralded as "someone to watch," soprano Olivia Boen is currently in her third year of undergraduate studies at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music under the tutelage of Daune Mahy. As an opera singer, she has performed such roles as Alcina in Oberlin Opera Theatre's production of Handel's Alcina, Norina in Oberlin-In-Italy’s production of Donizetti’s Don Pasquale and Lauretta in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. Equally at home performing contemporary music, Olivia has collaborated with composers Jesse Jones, Peter Kramer, and Shihui Yin. Recent performance highlights include concerts in Siena, Cortona, and Arezzo in Tuscany through the Oberlin-In-Italy program. She has participated in masterclasses by such renowned artists as Renée Fleming, Eric Owens, Nicole Cabell, and Enza Ferrari. Olivia has been selected for the prestigious position as one of Opera Theater of St. Louis’ Gerdine Young Artists and will begin her work with the company in April 2016. More information can be found at www.oliviaboen.com.


3rd PLACE:
SARAH LOVE TAYLOR
Winston-Salem NC
SARAH LOVE TAYLOR
Sarah Love Taylor, mezzo-soprano, hails from Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Her operatic credits include the title role in Carmen (CCM Summer Opera), Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, The Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors, Ruth in The Pirates of Penzance (Greensboro Light Opera), and Sister Dolcina in Suor Angelica. She debuted the role of Oscar the Cat, in Alejandro Rutty’s The Fight to be Favorite (Greensboro Opera). Scene credits include Charlotte (Werther), Nicklaus (Les contes d’Hoffmann), and Third Lady (The Magic Flute). Sarah has appeared as a guest artist with Durham Symphony Orchestra, Choral Society of Durham, Greensboro Oratorio Society, Concert Singers of Cary, and Roanoke College Choir. She earned her BM and BA (French) from UNC-Chapel Hill and her MM from UNC-Greensboro where she is currently pursuing her DMA in Performance. She is the founding President of the Student NATS chapter at UNC-Greensboro where she teaches Class Voice, Lyric Diction, and Applied Voice. www.sarahlovetaylor.com


The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(high school division) 

The American Prize winner:
OLIVIA PRENDERGAST
Penn Valley PA
OLIVIA PRENDERGAST
Olivia Prendergast is a senior attending Harriton High School in Bryn Mawr, PA and had studied privately with tenor Paul Spencer Adkins since 2012. In addition to directing Harriton’s a cappella groups and appearing in their theater productions, she received their school’s music award and scholarship for musical excellence. Olivia has had lead roles in Wolf Performing Arts Center’s productions, including Eve in “Children of Eden”, Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”, and Beth in “Little Women”. Olivia was a semifinalist in the Art Song Division of the Hal Leonard Vocal Competition, and was selected to attend the Metropolitan Opera Guild High School Opera Singers' Intensive. She also advanced to the semifinal round of the Classical Singer Vocal Competition and was a finalist in their inaugural on-line Summer Musical Theatre Vocal Competition. She is also active in her church choir as both a member and lead cantor. Olivia will continue her music training as a vocal performance major in the Bienen School of Music as part of Northwetern’s Class of 2020, where she will be in the studio of Sunny Joy Langton.


2nd PLACE:
LINA CHUNG
Buford GA
LINA CHUNG
Lina Chung is a 17 year-old soprano from Buford, Georgia, and is currently a senior at Mill Creek High School. She has done notable achievements such as winning First Place at the Schmidt Competition, being chosen as the soloist for Gounod's masterpiece "Gallia" with the New Atlanta Philharmonic Orchestra and Korean community choir, winner of the GA Christian University Music Competition (for Voice) being designated as an alumni at the Governor Honor's Program 2015, 6A Literary State Champion for Girl's Solo, performing at the Gwinnett Performing Arts Center with the New Atlanta Philharmonic Orchestra as well as holding multiple recitals at the Korean Festival, and 6 years of All State Chorus. She has also won scholarships and has been recognized by Julliard professor Margo Garrett, Indiana University professor Mary Ann Hart and opera singer Tamara Hardesty who graduated from the Curtis School of Music. She aspires to major in Vocal Performance and continue her craft throughout her lifetime. Nonetheless, her unchanging aspiration is to sing for the glory of God.


3rd PLACE:
DALIA MEDOVNIKOV
Woodbridge CT
DALIA MEDOVNIKOV
Dalia Medovnikov is a freshman in Amity High School, Woodbridge, Connecticut. She has been singing since her early childhood. Last summer she was accepted and participated in the Young Artists Vocal Program at Boston University Tanglewood Institute. She just got accepted to the same program again for this summer. In April of this year she will be participating in the “Amber Nightingale” International Art Song Competition in Kaliningrad, Russia.


SPECIAL CAREER ENCOURAGEMENT CITATION:
MARY ELIZABETH ADLER
Bellevue WA
MARY ELIZABETH ADLER
Mary Elizabeth Adler, soprano, is a sophomore in high school in Bellevue Washington.  She has been studying classical voice under Nancy Zylstra for over five years.  She has won numerous awards in classical vocal competitions locally, at the state level, and nationally.  She sings in the St. James Cathedral Young Women's Choir as well as with the Seattle Opera's STUDIO Program.  She also studies the cello under Page Smith and is in her high school orchestra as well as in a youth symphony.  She is the Captain of her high school Varsity Badminton team as well as the President of Biology club at school.


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Congratulations!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

COMPOSER FINALISTS, 2016: opera, theater, film

The American Prize is pleased to announce 2016 FINALIST composers of music for theater, opera, or film. Congratulations! To know the exact date when winners and runners-up will be announced, please "like" our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter #AmericanPrize, where that information will be published first.

If you are not a finalist this year, please remember that the contests are not yet over. The American Prize reserves the right to award Honorable Mentions and Citations for Special Achievement to any contestant, regardless of final placement.

Citations and Honorable Mentions are usually awarded at the same time as winners and runners-up, but can be presented at any time up to the last winners' announcement this fall. 

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

2016 FINALISTS: The American Prize in Composition—OPERA/THEATER/FILM, professional division

Curtis Bryant    Union City GA  Zabette    

Douglas Buchanan    Cockeysville MD
    Prospero Variations  

Justin N Dello Joio    New York NY
    Blue Mountain 

Avner Finberg    Ithaca NY
    A Taste of Damnation   

Raymond Horton    Floyds Knobs IN
    Searching For America 

Allen Shearer    Oakland CA
    Middlemarch in Spring    

Judith Lynn Stillman    Providence RI
    When the Music Stopped 


2016 FINALISTS: The American Prize in Composition—OPERA/THEATER/FILM, student division

Georgi T Dimitrov    Los Angeles CA
    Maximus: An Opera in One Act   

Dayton Kinney    Durham NC 
    Cold Hands   

Harriet Steinke    Grosse Pointe MI
    Somewhere in Europe   


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We encourage finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on social media, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog.

Here is a sample announcement:

"Great News! I've just been selected as a finalist in the (blank) division of The American Prize national non-profit competitions in the performing arts. Here's the link: (copy link here). The American Prize will be announcing winners in my division next month. You can learn more about this prestigious national competition here: www.theamericanprize.org or follow the news on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-American-Prize-celebrating-American-excellence-in-the-arts/214320622728 or Twitter: https://twitter.com/americanprize "

Please feel free to modify or expand this announcement to suit your needs.

Congratulations to all finalists.

Monday, December 5, 2016

WINNERS: The American Prize in Voice (women in art song), 2016—college and high school divisions

The American Prize is honored to announce the winners, runners-up, citation and honorable mention recipients of The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016—The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award, in college/university and high school divisions. Congratulations! (Results in the professional division will be announced shortly.)

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog. Please use the chronological tool in the right-hand column to find specific results.

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

The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award honors the memory of the greatest Wagnerian baritone of his age, Friedrich Schorr, who commanded the operatic stage between the world wars, and his wife, Virginia Schorr, who taught studio voice at the Manhattan School of Music and the Hartt School of Music for nearly fifty years. The Prize recognizes and rewards the best performances by classically trained vocalists in America in 2016, based on submitted recordings.

The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(college/university division)

The American Prize winner:
SAMANTHA SCHMID
Boston MA
SAMANTHA SCHMID
Samantha Schmid, lyric soprano—dedicates herself to exploring culture and communication. This season, Schmid makes her debut with Juventas New Music Ensemble as Constance in the premiere of Leo Hurley’s The Body Politic. She also appears as Donna Elvira with Opera in the Ozarks. A champion of contemporary and Slavic music, Schmid has recently performed with Russian Opera Workshop, Lowell House Opera, and the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras. Previous engagements include Tina (Flight), Iolanta (Iolanta), Liza (The Queen of Spades), Iphigénie (Iphigénie en Tauride), The Fox (The Cunning Little Vixen), and Erste Dame (Die Zauberflöte). Recognition for her artistry includes inauguration into the Pi Kappa Lambda national music honor society and multiple awards from NATS. A student of Dr. Kerry Deal, Schmid recently received her Professional Studies Certificate and M.M. in vocal performance from The Boston Conservatory. She also holds a B.A. from Webster University. For more information, visit www.samanthaschmid.com.


2nd PLACE:
OLIVIA BOEN
Chicago IL
OLIVIA BOEN
Heralded as "someone to watch," soprano Olivia Boen is currently in her third year of undergraduate studies at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music under the tutelage of Daune Mahy. As an opera singer, she has performed such roles as Alcina in Oberlin Opera Theatre's production of Handel's Alcina, Norina in Oberlin-In-Italy’s production of Donizetti’s Don Pasquale and Lauretta in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. Equally at home performing contemporary music, Olivia has collaborated with composers Jesse Jones, Peter Kramer, and Shihui Yin. Recent performance highlights include concerts in Siena, Cortona, and Arezzo in Tuscany through the Oberlin-In-Italy program. She has participated in masterclasses by such renowned artists as Renée Fleming, Eric Owens, Nicole Cabell, and Enza Ferrari. Olivia has been selected for the prestigious position as one of Opera Theater of St. Louis’ Gerdine Young Artists and will begin her work with the company in April 2016. More information can be found at oliviaboen.com.


3rd PLACE:
SARAH LOVE TAYLOR
Winston-Salem NC
SARAH LOVE TAYLOR
Sarah Love Taylor, mezzo-soprano, hails from Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Her operatic credits include the title role in Carmen (CCM Summer Opera), Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, The Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors, Ruth in The Pirates of Penzance (Greensboro Light Opera), and Sister Dolcina in Suor Angelica. She debuted the role of Oscar the Cat, in Alejandro Rutty’s The Fight to be Favorite (Greensboro Opera). Scene credits include Charlotte (Werther), Nicklaus (Les contes d’Hoffmann), and Third Lady (The Magic Flute). Sarah has appeared as a guest artist with Durham Symphony Orchestra, Choral Society of Durham, Greensboro Oratorio Society, Concert Singers of Cary, and Roanoke College Choir. She earned her BM and BA (French) from UNC-Chapel Hill and her MM from UNC-Greensboro where she is currently pursuing her DMA in Performance. She is the founding President of the Student NATS chapter at UNC-Greensboro where she teaches Class Voice, Lyric Diction, and Applied Voice. www.sarahlovetaylor.com


The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in art song and oratorio), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(high school division) 

The American Prize winner:
OLIVIA PRENDERGAST
Penn Valley PA
OLIVIA PRENDERGAST
Olivia Prendergast is a senior attending Harriton High School in Bryn Mawr, PA and had studied privately with tenor Paul Spencer Adkins since 2012. In addition to directing Harriton’s a cappella groups and appearing in their theater productions, she received their school’s music award and scholarship for musical excellence. Olivia has had lead roles in Wolf Performing Arts Center’s productions, including Eve in “Children of Eden”, Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”, and Beth in “Little Women”. Olivia was a semifinalist in the Art Song Division of the Hal Leonard Vocal Competition, and was selected to attend the Metropolitan Opera Guild High School Opera Singers' Intensive. She also advanced to the semifinal round of the Classical Singer Vocal Competition and was a finalist in their inaugural on-line Summer Musical Theatre Vocal Competition. She is also active in her church choir as both a member and lead cantor. Olivia will continue her music training as a vocal performance major in the Bienen School of Music as part of Northwetern’s Class of 2020, where she will be in the studio of Sunny Joy Langton.


2nd PLACE:
LINA CHUNG
Buford GA
LINA CHUNG
Lina Chung is a 17 year-old soprano from Buford, Georgia, and is currently a senior at Mill Creek High School. She has done notable achievements such as winning First Place at the Schmidt Competition, being chosen as the soloist for Gounod's masterpiece "Gallia" with the New Atlanta Philharmonic Orchestra and Korean community choir, winner of the GA Christian University Music Competition (for Voice) being designated as an alumni at the Governor Honor's Program 2015, 6A Literary State Champion for Girl's Solo, performing at the Gwinnett Performing Arts Center with the New Atlanta Philharmonic Orchestra as well as holding multiple recitals at the Korean Festival, and 6 years of All State Chorus. She has also won scholarships and has been recognized by Julliard professor Margo Garrett, Indiana University professor Mary Ann Hart and opera singer Tamara Hardesty who graduated from the Curtis School of Music. She aspires to major in Vocal Performance and continue her craft throughout her lifetime. Nonetheless, her unchanging aspiration is to sing for the glory of God.


3rd PLACE:
DALIA MEDOVNIKOV
Woodbridge CT
DALIA MEDOVNIKOV
Dalia Medovnikov is a freshman in Amity High School, Woodbridge, Connecticut. She has been singing since her early childhood. Last summer she was accepted and participated in the Young Artists Vocal Program at Boston University Tanglewood Institute. She just got accepted to the same program again for this summer. In April of this year she will be participating in the “Amber Nightingale” International Art Song Competition in Kaliningrad, Russia.


SPECIAL CAREER ENCOURAGEMENT CITATION:
MARY ELIZABETH ADLER
Bellevue WA
MARY ELIZABETH ADLER
Mary Elizabeth Adler, soprano, is a sophomore in high school in Bellevue Washington.  She has been studying classical voice under Nancy Zylstra for over five years.  She has won numerous awards in classical vocal competitions locally, at the state level, and nationally.  She sings in the St. James Cathedral Young Women's Choir as well as with the Seattle Opera's STUDIO Program.  She also studies the cello under Page Smith and is in her high school orchestra as well as in a youth symphony.  She is the Captain of her high school Varsity Badminton team as well as the President of Biology club at school.


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Congratulations!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

ERNST BACON AWARD finalists, 2016

The American Prize is very pleased to announce FINALISTS for the ERNST BACON MEMORIAL AWARD in the PERFORMANCE of AMERICAN MUSIC, 2016, in all divisions. Congratulations! To know the exact date when winners and runners-up will be announced, please "like" our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter #AmericanPrize, where that information will be published first.

If you are not a finalist this year, please remember that the contests are not yet over. The American Prize reserves the right to award Honorable Mentions and Citations for Special Achievement to any contestant, regardless of final placement.

TAP has honored many semi-finalists in the past--to recognize a unique talent or focus, unusual repertoire, vital programming or outreach.

Citations and Honorable Mentions are usually awarded at the same time as winners and runners-up, but can be presented at any time up to the last winners' announcement.

Among the many contests of The American Prize, the Ernst Bacon Memorial Award for the Performance of American Music is unique. It recognizes and rewards the best performances of American music by orchestras and choruses worldwide, based on submitted recordings. Applications are accepted from professional, college/university, community and high school orchestras, competing in separate divisions, from choruses performing with orchestra, from orchestra and choral conductors, and from composers of orchestral or choral/orchestral music with excellent recordings of their works.

Focused exclusively on works by American composers from any period and in any style, the contest not only judges performances, but in the case of new or unfamiliar works, the music itself.

Ernst Bacon (1898—1990) was one of that pioneering generation of composers who, along with Thomson, Copland, Harris, and others, found a voice for American music. Winner of a Pulitzer Scholarship (for his Symphony in D minor) and no fewer than three Guggenheim Fellowships, Ernst Bacon set out to create compositions that expressed the vitality and affirmative spirit of our country.

It is fitting, and with honor, that The American Prize creates an annual award in the memory of Ernst Bacon, recognizing the finest performances of American orchestral music worldwide.

To learn more about the music & legacy of Ernst Bacon, please visit the website of the Ernst Bacon Society.

We encourage finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on social media, and including a link to the announcement below on their website or blog.

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

The American Prize ERNST BACON MEMORIAL AWARD in the PERFORMANCE of AMERICAN MUSIC, finalists, PROFESSIONAL division, 2016

Finalists are listed by applicant, ensemble (when applicable), composer and name of work(s) submitted for consideration.

Christina Brice Dolanc, composer, Erie Chamber Orchestra & Erie Renaissance Singers Erie PA
   Dolanc—Stars Alone


Arthur Gottschalk, composer, Houston TX
    Gottschalk: Requiem—for the Living


Tim Huling, composer, Saratoga Orchestra of Whidbey Island, Anna Edwards, conductor, Whidbey Island WA
    Huling—The American Northwest


Farkhad Khudyev, composer, Monterey Symphony,  Farkhad Khudyev, conductor, Monterey CA
   Khudyev—The Sounds of Eternity


Jason Lim, conductor, Odysseus North Texas Chamber Orchestra, McKinney TX
    Russell Peck—Signs of Life II


Bryan Percoco, composer, Janacek Philharmonic, Ostrava, Czech Republic
    Percoco—Involutions of an Abyss


Nan Washburn, conductor, Michigan Philharmonic, Plymouth MI
    Michael Daugherty—Ladder to the Moon
    Carter Pann—Slalom
    Kareem Roustom—Hewar



The American Prize ERNST BACON MEMORIAL AWARD in the PERFORMANCE of AMERICAN MUSIC, finalists, COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY division, 2016

Finalists are listed by applicant, ensemble (when applicable), composer and name of work(s) submitted for consideration. 

Peter Askim, conductor, The Next Festival of Emerging Artists, NYC & Falls Village CT   
    Pierre Jalbert—Autumn Rhapsody
    Lisa Bielawa—The Trojan Woman


Mark Bartley, conductor, West Texas A&M University Symphony Orchestra Ensemble, Canyon TX
    Libby Larsen—Four on the Floor


Maxwell Karmazyn composer, University Symphony Orchestra, Ann Arbor MI
    Karmazyn—Le Voyage d'une Vie


Chris Younghoon Kim, conductor, Cornell Symphony Orchestra, Ithaca NY
    Steven Stucky—Second Concerto


Kyle Kindred, composer, Sam Houston State University Choruses and Symphony Orchestra, Huntsville TX
    Kindred—Canciones de Alfaro


Michael W. Moore, conductor, Bob Jones University Symphony Orchestra, Greenville SC
    Ernest Bloch—Schelomo


Hugh Murphy, conductor, SUNY Purchase Opera/Purchase Orchestra, Purchase NY
    Robert Ward—The Crucible


Samuel Winnie, composer, UMBC Chamber Ensemble, Catonsville MD
    Winnie—Nightfall in Lothlorien


 

The American Prize ERNST BACON MEMORIAL AWARD in the PERFORMANCE of AMERICAN MUSIC, finalists, COMMUNITY division, 2016

Finalists are listed by applicant, ensemble (when applicable), composer and name of work(s) submitted for consideration.

Donald L. Appert, conductor, Clark College Orchestra, Vancouver WA
    Eric Ewazen—Palmetto Suite for Alto Trombone and Orchestra


Libi Lebel, conductor, Texas Medical Center Orchestra, Houston TX
    Bernstein—Candide Overture
    Ron Nelson—Savannah River Holiday
    Grofe—Mississippi Suite


Steve Nelson Lewis, Jr., music director, Midwest Chamber Ensemble, Prairie Village KS
    Joseph Kern—Chamber Symphony


Diane Retallack, artistic director, Eugene Vocal Arts Chamber Choir, Eugene OR
    Joan Szymko—Shadow & Light (an alzheimer’s journey in sixteen movements)
 


The American Prize ERNST BACON MEMORIAL AWARD in the PERFORMANCE of AMERICAN MUSIC, finalists, YOUTH ORCHESTRA division, 2016

Finalists are listed by applicant, ensemble (when applicable), composer and name of work(s) submitted for consideration.

Orlando Cela, conductor, NC Governor's School Orchestra, Winston-Salem NC
   Ken Ueno—On the Condition for the Existence of Most Specific Hypothesis
   Libby Larsen—What the Monster Saw
   Ives—Three Places in New England, Putnam’s Camp, Redding, Connecticut
   Ives—The Fourth of July
   Dulaney—The Old Harp, version 3
   John Luther Adams—Dark Waves
   Armando Bayolo—A Shelter that Filters the Sun

Wes Kenney, conductor, Denver Young Artists Orchestra. Denver CO
    Copland—Billy the Kid Suite
 


We encourage finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on social media, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog.

Here is a sample announcement:

"Great News! I've just been selected as a finalist in the (blank) division of The American Prize national non-profit competitions in the performing arts. Here's the link: (copy link here). The American Prize will be announcing winners in my division soon. You can learn more about this prestigious national competition here: www.theamericanprize.org or follow the news on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-American-Prize-celebrating-American-excellence-in-the-arts/214320622728 or Twitter: https://twitter.com/americanprize "

Please feel free to modify or expand this announcement to suit your needs.

Congratulations to all finalists.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

COMPOSER FINALISTS, 2016: band

The American Prize is pleased to announce FINALIST composers of band music for 2016-17. Congratulations! To know the exact date when winners and runners-up will be announced, please "like" our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter #AmericanPrize, where that information will be published first.

If you are not a finalist this year, please remember that the contests are not yet over. The American Prize reserves the right to award Honorable Mentions and Citations for Special Achievement to any contestant, regardless of final placement.

TAP has honored many semi-finalists in the past--to recognize a unique talent or focus, unusual repertoire, vital programming or outreach.

Citations and Honorable Mentions are usually awarded at the same time as winners and runners-up, but can be presented at any time up to the last winners' announcement.

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

We encourage finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on social media, and including a link to the announcement below on their website or blog. 

FINALISTS: The American Prize in Composition—band/wind ensemble (professional division)

David Avshalomov    Santa Monica CA
   Hill Dance—for concert band (featuring the clarinet choir)

Jesse Ayers    Canton OH
   The Fire of the Living God—for wind orchestra / symphonic band

Jennifer Bellor    Henderson NV
   Bordello Nights—for wind orchestra and jazz band

Ethan Cypress    Oneonta NY
   Railway Bridge—for wind ensemble

Gregory Fritze    Daytona Beach Shores FL
   A Day in Valencia
   Pershing


Jack Gallagher    Wooster OH
   Proteus Rising from the Sea—for wind ensemble or Symphonic Band

Jason Huffman    Malden MA
   Alleles—for Symphonic Band

Miguel A. Roig-Francoli    Cincinnati OH
   Perseus—for wind ensemble

Kenyon Wilson    Chattanooga TN
   Five

James Young    Baltimore MD
   Shouting at the Gates to the Neon Wasteland—for wind ensemble


FINALISTS: The American Prize in Composition—band/wind ensemble (student division)

Dinah Bianchi    Belleville MI
   The Jackal’s Palace

Derek M. Jenkins    Kansas City MO
   We Seven—for wind ensemble

Aaron Mencher    Johns Creek GA
   New—for wind ensemble

Zachary Ploeger    Pipestone MN
   Poem—for symphonic band

*** 

We encourage finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on social media, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog.

Here is a sample announcement:

"Great News! I've just been selected as a finalist in the (blank) division of The American Prize national non-profit competitions in the performing arts. Here's the link: (copy link here). The American Prize will be announcing winners in my division soon. You can learn more about this prestigious national competition here: www.theamericanprize.org or follow the news on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-American-Prize-celebrating-American-excellence-in-the-arts/214320622728 or Twitter: https://twitter.com/americanprize "

Please feel free to modify or expand this announcement to suit your needs.

Congratulations to all finalists.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

WINNERS: The American Prize in Voice (women in opera)

The American Prize is honored to announce the winners, runners-up and honorable mentions of The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in opera and operetta), 2016—The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award, in professional, college/university and high school divisions. Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog. Please use the chronological tool in the right-hand column to find specific results.

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

The American Prize in Vocal Performance—Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award honors the memory of the greatest Wagnerian baritone of his age, Friedrich Schorr, who commanded the operatic stage between the world wars, and his wife, Virginia Schorr, who taught studio voice at the Manhattan School of Music and the Hartt School of Music for nearly fifty years. The Prize recognizes and rewards the best performances by classically trained vocalists in America in 2016, based on submitted recordings.

The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in opera and operetta), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(professional division)

The American Prize winner:
SAMANTHA BRITT
New York NY
SAMANTHA BRITT
Samantha Britt expressively performs Art Songs and Opera around the world. Samantha recently portrayed tempestuous Carla in the World Premiere of A Certain Quiet (Elisha), and soft-hearted Leslie in Companionship, by Rachel Peters, at The Virginia Arts Festival. The Huffington Post described Samantha in Rappaccini’s Daughter (Cohen/Abrams) as “compellingly poignant…with lovely floated tones and plangent high notes.” As Mag in Ballymore (Wargo) at Chelsea Opera, Opera News called her “sparkling and playful… fully capturing the audience’s love and empathy”. Samantha has performed Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with San Antonio Opera, Mabel in Pirates of Penzance, Josephine in H.M.S. Pinafore, and Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof, and Adina in L’elisir d’amore. A New England Regional Finalist of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, Samantha earned her BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and her MM from Manhattan School of Music. www.samanthabritt.com.


2nd PLACE:
JESSICA SATAVA
Baltimore MD
JESSICA SATAVA
“Soprano Jessica Satava lent great beauty and intensity of feeling to her performance.” (The Baltimore Sun, 2015) Ms. Satava has appeared as Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, La Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro, Musetta in La bohème, Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Inez in Il Trovatore, Voce dal Cielo in Don Carlo, Julie in Carousel, Laurey in Oklahoma!, and as Mimí and Micaëla in concert performances of La bohème and Carmen.  While at Peabody Conservatory, she performed the roles of Nella in Gianni Schicchi, and Polly in The Threepenny Opera. Ms. Satava was the soprano soloist in Górecki’s Symphony No. 3, Rutter’s Requiem, Vaughan Williams’ Dona nobis pacem, Brahms’ Ein Deutches Requiem, Schubert’s Mass in G, Bruckner’s Te Deum, Handel’s Messiah, Saint-Saëns’ Oratorio de Noël, Dvořák’s Stabat Mater, Britten’s Ceremony of Carols, Mozart’s Requiem and Bach’s St. John Passion and Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern, BWV 1. Please visit www.jessicasatava.com


3rd PLACE:
MANNA KNJOI
Stallings NC
MANNA KNJOI
Manna KnJoi embodies the quality and natural endowment to conquer a wide range of repertoire from Mozart to verismo to modern works for the concert and opera stage. Most recently, Ms. KnJoi made her international debut as Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte at the Tuscia Opera Festival in Viterbo, Italy and appeared at Lincoln Center in concert with Opera Ebony of New York. This season also brought her world premier performance in the role of Essie Robeson in Adolphus Hailstork’s new biopic opera Robeson: The Opera with Trilogy Opera Company at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center.  Previous season have seen Manna Knjoi in debuts as Pamina in The Magic Flute with the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly with New York Lyric Opera at Carnegie Hall, Micaëla in Carmen at Lincoln Center, the title role in Suor Angelica and the Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors with the California Opera. Manna KnJoi has received numerous award recognitions from: Paris Opera Awards, The Benjamin Mathews competition, and Opera Birmingham, the Elaine Malbin Vocal Competition, Mid-South District Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, the Palm Springs Opera Guild, and the National Society of Arts and Letters. When Manna sang for Marilyn Horne, the legendary mezzo-soprano pronounced her voice, “An incredible instrument.”


FINALIST / HONORABLE MENTION:
KISMA JORDAN
Detroit MI
KISMA JORDAN
Recognized by The New York Times for her “shimmering soprano voice” and soul-stirring  communicative ability, Kisma has proven to be a vocal powerhouse of great versatility.  The Baltimore Sun praised excitedly, “Kisma Jordan steals the show, vocally…with her truly lovely soprano. She sounds wonderful in the house, the tone ripe and well-supported, the phrasing lively, the diction superb.  I can't prove any great powers of prognostication, but I sure do feel there's a good chance we could all be hearing more from this singer in time.”

The Detroit, Michigan native is a recipient of the 2014 Kresge Artist Fellowship.  For the 2015-16 season Kisma presented her fusion project Beyond Classical to Detroit Performs Live from Carr Center, then appeared with Annapolis Opera in Angels & Demons a concert showcasing the saints and sinners of the operatic repertoire.  She presented recitals of songs and arias as part of Music at St. Paul’s Flint Concert Series, then headlined with Black Women Rock 2016.



FINALIST / HONORABLE MENTION:
LINDSEY MCKEE
Tulsa OK
LINDSEY MCKEE
A graduate of the GuildHall School of Music in London, Lindsey has a diverse career,which includes Opera, Oratorio and Musical Theatre. She has performed all over the world,making her London debut singing the role of 'Mary' in Elgar's The Kingdom, and in recital at The Leighton House. She has been heard in recital in South Africa on the SABC.She has performed with orchestras and opera companies across the USA, including The St.Louis Symphony(Sheldon Series), The Saint Louis Philharmonic,The Asheville Symphony,and The Kansas City Symphony (Lacy Requiem World Premiere). Recent Engagements include Three Songs for Soprano, Oswaldo Golijov,and Henrick Gorecki's Third Symphony.


FINALIST / HONORABLE MENTION:
RACHELE SCHMIEGE
Jamaica Plain MA
RACHELE SCHMIEGE
RACHELE SCHMIEGE has been praised for her “incredibly crystalline voice” and “absolutely thrilling” portrayals. This season, she appears as Lucette in Cendrillon with Resonance Works and Soprano II in Hydrogen Jukebox with Nashville Opera. On the concert stage, Ms. Schmiege will be singing Soprano solos in Ein Deutsches Requiem, Brahms (Chatham Chorale) and Messa da Requiem, Verdi (Midcoast Symphony). Recent appearances include: Elle, La Voix Humaine and Amy, Little Women (Opera on the James); Violetta, La Traviata (Hubbard Hall Opera Theater); Gilda, Rigoletto (Cape Cod Opera Outreach); Valencienne, The Merry Widow (Opera Providence); Dortchen Wilde, The Brother’s Grimm (Nashville Opera, US premiere).  Recent concert appearances include: Soprano soloist, Requiem, Verdi (Cape Cod Symphony and Pioneer Valley Symphony); Mass in C minor, Mozart (Newburyport Chorale Society); Magnificat, Bach (Akron Symphony Chorus); Requiem and Exultate Jubilate, Mozart (Chatham Chorale); new work in collaboration with composer Mohammad Fairouz.  For more information, visit: www.racheleschmiege.com


The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in opera and operetta), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(college/university division)

The American Prize winner:
NATALIE LOGAN
Dallas TX
NATALIE LOGAN
Natalie Logan, soprano, is a native of Dallas, Texas. Her full operatic roles include Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro,  Contoller in Flight, Olympia in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Anne Trulove in The Rake’s Progress, Clorinda in La cenerentola, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Tytania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Flora in The Turn of the Screw. She has performed with The Dallas Opera, The Boston Conservatory, Louisiana State University, Opera in the Ozarks, Chicago Summer Opera, Opéra Louisiane, First United Methodist Church in Cedar Hill, Texas, and St. Josheph’s Cathedral in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Ms. Logan holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Louisiana State University (May 2014) under the tutelage of Robert Grayson and earned her Master of Music degree in Voice Performance at The Boston Conservatory (May 2016) under the tutelage of Patty Thom.


2nd PLACE (there was a tie):
BEIBEI GUAN
Fresh Meadow NY
BEIBEI GUAN
Praised for her "Intense focus, riveting delivery, beautiful singing" by New York Times, Chinese soprano Beibei Guan recently won Marcello Giordani Foundation 5th International Vocal Competition, Orpheus National Vocal Competition, New York Lyric Opera Theatre National Vocal competition. Ms. Guan has most recently performed the role of La Donna in Rinaldo; Countess in Le nozze di; Nancy in Albert; Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi; the cover role of Liù in Turandot; Pamina in Die Zauberflöte; Mimì in La Bohème. Ms Guan sang in the U.S. Premier of "Sonic Blossom" by the renowned artist, Lee Mingwei, in Museum of Fine Arts Boston. In fall, 2015, Ms. Guan was invited again to sing in Metropolitan Museum of Arts, NYC for "Sonic Blossom New York Premier", which later received the award of "The Best Classical Event of 2015" by New York Times. Ms. Guan completed her Master of Music and Graduate Performance Diploma in Vocal performance from The Boston Conservatory, under the tutelage of Kathryn Wright.


2nd PLACE (there was a tie):
ELIZABETH MORAN
New York NY
ELIZABETH MORAN
Elizabeth Moran most recently performed as Blondchen in Die Entführung aus dem Serail. She also recently sung the roles of Suor Genovieffa and Morgana with New York Lyric Opera. Ms. Moran has performed Juliette with the Martina Arroyo Foundation. She sang Queen of the Night and Polissena (cover) with Manhattan Opera Studio and was a young artist with La Lingua Della Lirica, performing in scenes as Angelica in Orlando, Norina in Don Pasquale, Cunegonde in Candide and Lisette in La Rondine. As a studio artist with Anchorage Opera, Ms. Moran performed in Eugene Onegin, Pagliacci, Suor Angelica and Don Carlos, and she was featured in solo recitals throughout Alaska. Other roles include Laetitia, Zerlina, Rosina, and Adina. Ms. Moran is a frequent soloist with the Baldwin Festival Chorus and the Central Jersey Symphony Orchestra. She currently resides in New York City. www.elizabeth-moran.com
 

3rd PLACE:
ALYSSA BRODE
Los Angeles CA
ALYSSA BRODE
Alyssa Brode is a Philadelphia-born, Los Angeles-based soprano whose performance experience and training span both coasts. Her opera credits include La Fée (Massenet's Cendrillon), Laetitia (The Old Maid and the Thief), Gretel (Hansel and Gretel), Amor (Orfeo ed Euridice) and First Lady (Die Zauberflöte). Alyssa holds a Master of Music in voice performance from California State University, Northridge and a Bachelor of Music from Westminster Choir College where, as a member of the renowned Westminster Symphonic Choir, she had the privilege of performing symphonic masterworks with some of the world's most prominent conductors (Pierre Boulez, Kurt Masur, Lorin Maazel) and orchestras (New York Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Staatskapelle Berlin). Alyssa is a recipient of the Robert Barbera Scholarship in Voice, the Village Voices Scholarship and the Rachel Ketchie Memorial Award as well as being a member of the Pi Kappa Lambda music honor society. Visit alyssabrode.com for more information.


FINALIST / HONORABLE MENTION:
KSENIA BERESTOVSKAYA
Boston MA
KSENIA BERESTOVSKAYA
Growing up in her native Omsk, Russia, mezzo-soprano Ksenia Berestovskaya remembers a childhood punctuated by her family’s deep respect of science and poetry. After exploring jazz and popular music with working bands, she tried performing Tchaikovsky’s “Polina’s” aria and a love of opera began. Soon after, she left to pursue her musical dreams in the United States. The recipient of several merit-based scholarships, including the Sylvia C. Segal Voice Scholarship, Ksenia completed her Bachelor’s in Vocal Music at the University of Tennessee and her Master’s in Music at the New England Conservatory in Boston, MA Ksenia has performed in Russia, Ireland, the United Kingdom, and across the United States. Her most recent opera roles include Prince Orlofsky in Die Fliedermaus and Principessa in Suor Angelica with New England Conservatory’s Opera Theatre.


FINALIST / HONORABLE MENTION:
SAMANTHA SCHMID
Boston MA
SAMANTHA SCHMID
Samantha Schmid, lyric soprano—dedicates herself to exploring culture and communication. This season, Schmid makes her debut with Juventas New Music Ensemble as Constance in the premiere of Leo Hurley’s The Body Politic. She also appears as Donna Elvira with Opera in the Ozarks. A champion of contemporary and Slavic music, Schmid has recently performed with Russian Opera Workshop, Lowell House Opera, and the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras. Previous engagements include Tina (Flight), Iolanta (Iolanta), Liza (The Queen of Spades), Iphigénie (Iphigénie en Tauride), The Fox (The Cunning Little Vixen), and Erste Dame (Die Zauberflöte). Recognition for her artistry includes inauguration into the Pi Kappa Lambda national music honor society and multiple awards from NATS. A student of Dr. Kerry Deal, Schmid recently received her Professional Studies Certificate and M.M. in vocal performance from The Boston Conservatory. She also holds a B.A. from Webster University. For more information, visit www.samanthaschmid.com.


The American Prize in Vocal Performance (women in opera and operetta), 2016
The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Award
(high school division)

The American Prize winner:
ALEXANDRA TAYLOR
Naples FL
ALEXANDRA TAYLOR
Alexandra Taylor,soprano, is from Naples, Florida. She is a 18 year old high school senior at Barron Collier High School and is a member of the school choir.   She has taken private voice lessons since the age of 15. She has been involved with Opera Naples in the children’s and adult choirs since she was 12 years old.  The productions that she has participated in with Opera Naples are as follows:  Carmen, A Mid-Summer’s Night Dream, La Boheme, Pirates of Penzance, Il Pagliacci, Rudigore, Patience and Tosca. She has performed as a soloist in many of the Opera Naples concerts. In 2015, she was a winner of the Naples Music Club Vocal Competition.  In February 2016, she was a 1st place winner of the Tampa Bay Chapter NATS Vocal Auditions in the Upper High School Category for Classical Music.


2nd PLACE:
CAITLIN CHISHAM
Holts Summit MO
CAITLIN CHISHAM
Caitlin Chisham is 14 years old and a 8th Grader at Fatima Junior High. Last spring, she won 3rd Place in the Hal Leonard National Art Song Competition Ages 12 and Under Category.  She has performed with the American Choral Directors’ Association National Boychoir and Community Youth Honor Choir in Dallas, TX as well as the Missouri Choral Directors’ Association State 4-6 Grade Honor Choir in Jefferson City, MO. She has also sung in the Southwestern American Choral Directors’ Regional 4-6 Grade Honor Choir in Little Rock, AR as well as in Kansas City, MO. Most recently, Caitlin was a guest soloist with the Columbia College Choir's rendition Dan Forrest's "Requiem"  under the direction of Nollie Moore.  Caitlin sang the lead role of Amahl in Gian Carlos Menotti’s opera “Amahl and the Night Visitors.” in December of 2014 with the Show Me Opera and Columbia Civic Orchestra under the direction of Christine Seitz and Dr. Julian Freund. Caitlin was also a featured singer in the Missouri Symphony’s “Symphony of Toys” concert in December of 2013 under the direction of Maestro Kirk Trevor. Caitlin is a member of the Missouri Symphony Society Children's Chorus and Junior Sinfonia.  Caitlin is a voice student of Dr. Michael Straw of Columbia, an oboe student of Dr. Allison Robuck of Columbia  and piano student of Gretchen Huedepohl of Jefferson City. Caitlin Chisham recently won 1st Place with the New York Lyric Opera Junior Division Vocal Competition.


3rd PLACE:
LILITH SARKAR
Los Altos CA
LILITH SARKAR
Lilith Sarkar is a senior at Homestead High School in Cupertino, CA. Most recently, she received the Leon Winters Scholarship Award. She participated in the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival as a young artist, where she performed in Purcell’s The Fairy Queen and in the Festival’s Liederabend recital. In 2015, Lilith received honorable mention for the Martha Marcks Mack Vocal Award, was the Western Regional winner of the Joyce Walsh Vocal Award, and was a semi-finalist in the Hal Leonard Vocal Competition. She is active in her community, performing concerts at senior centers and giving voice lessons to young children. Lilith plans to attend conservatory and pursue a career in opera. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in the Oberlin in Italy summer program in 2016! Lilith studies with Iris Fraser (Palo Alto, CA) and coaches with Russell Norman (Palo Alto, CA) and Robert Ashens (Eugene, OR).


*** 
Congratulations!