Saturday, August 3, 2019

WINNERS: bands / wind ensembles, 2018-19


The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, chief judge, is honored to announce the winners, runners-up, honorable mentions and citation recipient of The American Prize in Band / Wind Ensemble Performance, 2018-19, 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.

QUICKNOTES: Although The American Prize does not usually provide written evaluations to semi-finalists, some semi-finalist composers will receive in their certificate packets short comments, suggestions or overall impressions made during the judging. We hope they will prove valuable. All finalists receive written evaluations from a member of The American Prize judging panel.

REMINDER: Because of many requests from artists with late spring and early summer performances, applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until  
Monday, August 5, 2019. (Please note that although the dates on the application forms may not be changed, rest assured that your materials will be accepted if sent by the new deadline dates in the respective contest areas.)

The American Prize 2019-20 will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of
Monday, July 1, 2019, with extensions available by email request. (theamericanprize@gmail.com)

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


The American Prize in Band / Wind Ensemble Performance, college/university division, 2018-19

The American Prize winner:
Wichita State University Wind Ensemble
Timothy Shade
Wichita KS 

Wichita State University Wind Ensemble
The Wichita State University Wind Ensemble has been heralded as “one of the finest university bands in the nation,” receiving critical acclaim for its “musically emotional and technically detailed performances.”  With a flexible instrumentation, the Wind Ensemble regularly enrolls the finest graduate and undergraduate performers in the School of Music at Wichita State University. While full band literature is the mainstay of the ensemble’s repertoire, there is major-emphasis on ensemble literature for instrumentations from octets to 35-members from various historical genres and periods. The WSU Wind Ensemble regularly performs at local, regional, and national conventions and conferences. Recent appearances include New York’s Carnegie Hall, the Kansas Music Educators Association Conference and the College Band Directors National Association Southwest Regional Convention.


2nd Place:
Capital University Symphonic Winds
Jeffrey D. Gershman
Columbus OH  

Capital University Symphonic Winds
The Capital University Symphonic Winds, under the direction of Jeffrey D. Gershman, is the premier wind band in the Conservatory of Music. The Symphonic Winds perform programs that draw from the cornerstones of the wind literature, the finest contemporary works, and the rich and varied repertoire composed for chamber winds.  The ensemble frequently hosts nationally and internationally recognized guest soloists, guest composers, and guest conductors and its recording with the Boston Brass, Heroes and Legends, is available nationally through Summit Records.

Outside of their campus concerts, the ensemble has toured throughout the United States and abroad and has earned frequent invitations to perform at professional conferences.  Appearances have included the Ohio Music Education Association Professional Development Conference, the College Band Directors National Association Regional Conference, and a weeklong tour of Taiwan. 


Third Place (there was a tie):
NEC Symphonic Winds
William Drury
Boston MA 

NEC Symphonic Winds
The NEW ENGLAND CONSERVATORY SYMPHONIC WINDS is composed primarily of freshmen and sophomores. The ensemble performs at least 7 concerts per year, two of which are the extremely popular Holidays Concerts, which are a combination of the Symphonic Winds, the NEC Chamber Choir and Navy Band Northeast. The ensemble plays music from the 16th century to music of the present day. Guest artists have included Charles Schlueter, Shawn Edmonds, Marvin Stamm, Jerry Bergonzi, George Garzone, Charlie Powers, James Nova, Douglas Monroe, Will Frampton, Erica Washburn, Yukiko Takagi and Stephen Drury.


Third Place (there was a tie):
University of Houston Wind Ensemble
David Clemmer
Houston TX  

University of Houston Wind Ensemble
The Moores School Wind Ensemble is the University of Houston’s premier wind performance organization. The ensemble has gained a national reputation through performances at the conventions of the Texas Music Educators Association, Midwest Clinic, College Band Directors National Association, Louisiana Music Educators Association, Colorado Music Educators Association and the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, as well as the Meyerson Symphony Hall Series and numerous performances in the Houston metropolitan area. The Wind Ensemble has recorded 12 CDs, including four recorded after being selected by the International Percy Grainger Society to record Grainger’s works for winds. The 60-member ensemble is dedicated to exploring a wide diversity of wind literature, from canonic repertoire to new and unexplored wind ensemble and chamber works written within the last decade. 


Finalist Honorable Mention:
University of Arkansas Wind Ensemble
Chris Knighten
Fayetteville AR  

University of Arkansas Wind Ensemble
The University of Arkansas Wind Ensemble is comprised of approximately sixty students who have demonstrated outstanding musicianship and are committed to musical excellence. Dedicated to the study and performance of traditional and contemporary repertoire, the Wind Ensemble performs two or three concerts each semester. Flexible instrumentation and part rotation allow diverse musical experiences and responsibilities in the performance of chamber works as well as pieces for orchestral winds or large symphonic band.

Recent tours included performances at the Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas, TX, the Robinson Center for the Performing Arts in Little Rock, AR, and performances at the 2014 and 2016 College Band Directors National Association Southwest Division conferences, in Fayetteville, AR and Boulder, CO, respectively. The Wind Ensemble also hosts an annual conducting symposium for public school music educators in addition to touring to public schools throughout the mid-south and southwest regions of the country.


The American Prize in Band / Wind Ensemble Performance, community band division, 2018-19

The American Prize winner:
Westchester Symphonic Winds
Curt Ebersole
Tarrytown NY   

Westchester Symphonic Winds
Westchester Symphonic Winds is an adult community wind ensemble, conducted by Curt Ebersole, based at Tarrytown Music Hall, Tarrytown, NY. We exist to promote music locally, instill pride in our nation and heritage, provide opportunities for personal expression and growth within our membership, and nurture the love of music by offering an exceptional musical experience. Our programs have included a Side-by-Side Concert with the Mahopac (NY) Central School District and Exchange Program with the Northshore Concert Band of Evanston, IL. We made our Lincoln Center debut at Avery Fisher Hall in 2010, performed at the Association of Concert Bands National Convention in 2012 and New York State Band Directors Winter Symposium in 2017, and have performed to sold-out crowds at the Caramoor Festival annually since 2014. We have been the subject of articles in The New York Times and Teaching Music, the magazine of the National Association for Music Education.  www.westchestersymphonicwinds.org


2nd Place:
Quincy Concert Band
Dr. Trent A. Hollinger
Quincy IL   

Quincy Concert Band
Serving the Quincy, Illinois community since 1982, the Quincy Concert Band is a volunteer organization comprised of adult musicians from the greater Quincy Area. The band earned national recognition as the second-place winners of the 2015 American Prize in Band Performance—community band division. The QCB is committed to preserving the rich heritage of community bands and quality wind band literature by presenting free concerts of artistic and professional excellence to the Quincy and Tri-State community.  In 2017, the band was selected to perform at the Illinois Music Education Conference. In March 2016, the band helped premiere Elegy for the Wall’s Unnamed by Kevin Walczyk—a commission in memory of Paul Duker (QCB’s founding conductor) and all Agent Orange victims from Vietnam.  The ensemble has been under the direction of Dr. Trent A. Hollinger since 2010. The band’s motto remains “A Richer, Fuller Life through Music!”  http://quincyconcertband.org/


3rd Place:
The Allentown Band
Ronald Demkee
Allentown PA 

The Allentown Band
Since its first performance on July 4, 1828, Allentown Band’s venerable existence is a testament to the value the community has placed upon its contributions to the arts, culture and education.  Celebrating 190 years of service in 2018, the band has broadened its impact and reach through increased concert programming and extensive concert repertoire. Presenting 45+ stellar concerts annually with national and regional guest artists the band additionally offers high-quality youth educational opportunities reaching more than 14 regional school districts.  As a charitable organization the band presents unparalleled music experiences for all ages with performance level concerts like those performed by the premier U.S. military service bands in Washington DC and major symphony orchestras.  Band members are highly engaged in the success of the organization. Membership represents diverse occupations that include: doctors, dentists, banking personnel, educators, administrators, private business owners and accountants, all who value musicianship and stellar artistic standards.


Finalist Honorable Mention: 
Quad City Wind Ensemble
Brian Hughes
Davenport IA 

Quad City Wind Ensemble
The Quad City Wind Ensemble (QCWE) is a non-profit organization created to enhance the musical arts of the Quad Cities and surrounding areas. Founded in 1987 by Dr. Charles B. DCamp, the QCWE is today one of the premier ensembles of its kind in the country, winning the American Prize in 2012 and appearing six times in concert at the prestigious Iowa Bandmasters Conference.

Other past conductors include Richard Scott Cohen, Andrew Mast, and Eugene Bechen, all former Directors of Bands at St. Ambrose University. Current Music Director Brian Hughes assumed leadership in Fall 2007 and is the first non-resident conductor of the QCWE.

In recent years the QCWE has become a voice for contemporary music, with multiple concerts solely of women composers and others featuring the music of the new millennium. Ensemble members are music teachers, health care professionals, accountants, lawyers, and retirees, brought together by the love of playing great music. www.qcwinensemble.org


Special Judges' Citation: "Impressive Performances of Major Classics in Unique Arrangements”
Camellia City Flute Choir 
Martin Melicharek III
Sacramento CA   

Camellia City Flute Choir 
The Camellia City Flute Choir established in 1998 has entertained Sacramento Valley audiences. Initially started by seven flutists the Community based comprises 11 to 20 members. The ensembles mainstay of concert flutes is enhanced by the present of alto, bass and contrabass flutes. Members include amateur flutist, music teachers, flutist from our community symphonic winds and orchestras. The ensemble has made five appearances at the National flute convention, and is a regular performing group for the Music at Noon concert series, the Crocker Art Museum and the annual holiday concerts in the Capitol rotunda, as well as performances at retirement homes, American River College and California State University Sacramento. Dr. Martin Melicharek serves as the artistic director, conductor and arranger.


The American Prize in Band / Wind Ensemble Performance, high school band division, 2018-19

The American Prize winner:
Huntley High School Wind Ensemble
Philip Carter
Huntley IL  

Huntley High School Wind Ensemble
The Huntley High School Wind Ensemble is the premier performing ensemble of the Huntley High School Band Program.  The Wind Ensemble regularly performs at regional and statewide festivals including appearances the 2018 Illinois Music Education Conference and the 2018 Illinois SuperState Concert Band Festival.  In addition, members of the Wind Ensemble are routinely accepted to the McHenry County Honor Band, ILMEA District 9 ensembles, and ILMEA All-State Ensembles.  The Wind Ensemble frequently brings in master teachers in to work with the group including clinicians from Illinois State University, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Elmhurst College, and VanderCook College of Music.


2nd Place:
North Hills High School Wind Ensemble
Len Lavelle
Pittsburgh PA  

North Hills High School Wind Ensemble
The North Hills Wind Ensemble (formerly Symphony Band) has been featured at conventions around the country including the Midwest Convention (six times), Concert Band National Convention, MENC/NAfME All-Eastern Convention (eight times), and PMEA State Convention (thirteen times). The bands were awarded the Sudler Flag of Honor from the John Philip Sousa Foundation as part of the inaugural group in 1983. Guest soloists and conductors have included William Revelli, Arthur Fieldler, Arnald Gabriel, Vaclav Nelhybel, Alfred Reed, Stephen Gage, Fred Allen, Allen Vizzutti, Urbie Green, Fred Hemke, Louis Bellison, among many others.

The North Hills Bands have maintained an annual commission series since 1965. Works from the series have been recorded by the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra with Frederick Fennel conducting, D.C. service bands, the University of North Texas Wind Symphony, and college ensembles throughout the country. They have also been featured in the series, Teaching Music Through Performance in Band.


3rd Place:
Charlotte Catholic Symphonic Winds
Timothy Cook
Charlotte NC 

Charlotte Catholic Symphonic Winds
The Charlotte Catholic High School Band has gained notable recognition for its recent performances. In 2015, the band traveled to Ireland where they competed in the International Marching Band Competition in Limerick, Ireland and the St. Patrick's Day Festival Parade in Dublin, Ireland. The band was successful in both parades being named the Best International Band in Limerick and Best Overall Band in Dublin. Additionally, the band received a standing ovation for their performance in the International Exchange Concert hosted in Dublin's St. Patrick's Cathedral.

The Symphonic Winds, under the direction of Timothy Cook, has gained notable recognition amongst private school ensembles in Charlotte and North Carolina. Their performance at the South Central District's Music Performance Assessment was awarded straight stage-superiors.



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Congratulations!

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