Tuesday, May 26, 2020

RULE CHANGES / EASED REQUIREMENTS in response to COVID when you APPLY for 2020-21 contests

In response to unprecedented national and international events surrounding the COVID virus, we are CHANGING RULES and EASING REQUIREMENTS for all contests in 2020-21 to make it easier to apply. Questions? Please email us at theamericanprize@gmail.com

Taking advantages of any of these changes in no way negatively affects a contestant's application or eligibility.

Application forms and full information on the website: www.theamericanprize.org
(Click on “competitions” to get started.)

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ALL CONTESTS:
    DEADLINES:
Later application DEADLINES are in place for all contests. See individual competitions for current deadlines. (We will be especially flexible with deadlines this season, knowing the challenges many artists face preparing their materials.)
    AGE of RECORDINGS:
There are no limits on the age of recordings. We will now accept recordings made in any season in all contests.

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COMPOSERS:
    MIDI or SYNTHESIZED RECORDINGS:
If readings or performance recordings of composers' music are not available, we will accept midi, synthesized or computer generated recordings in all divisions.
    NEW PDF OPTION:
Although sending two printed copies of scores is still preferred (enclose a stamped self-addressed envelope minimum size 11x14 inches to have scores returned at the end of the contest) we understand that requirement is not possible for everyone this contest year. We now accept PDFs of scores attached to online applications. Please identify PDFs clearly. (Only one copy of the PDF need be sent.)
    OPERA/THEATER/FILM/DANCE DIVISION:

In the OPERA / THEATER / FILM / DANCE division, we will accept "concert" (unstaged) and computer generated performances.
    NEW CATEGORY:
A new category for composers has been added for POPS / LIGHT MUSIC in the CHAMBER MUSIC composition contest.

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CONDUCTORS and ENSEMBLES in ALL DIVISIONS:
    NO LIMITS on WHEN RECORDINGS were made:
There are no limits on the age of recordings. We will now accept recordings made in any season in all contests.
    NEW:    ORCHESTRAL PROGRAMMING:
Programs of concerts may be in draft form and need not have actually been performed.
    NEW: EDUCATION PRIZE:
A new contest this season recognizes the best programs in arts education. Find it on the arts marketing page, here: http://www.theamericanprize.org/adminmarketing.html

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SINGERS and SOLO INSTRUMENTALISTS:
    ACCOMPANIMENTS:
Pre-recorded accompaniments will be accepted.
    NEW:    HIGH SCHOOL VOCAL DIVISIONS:
Only two pieces are required in the art song or opera contests, one of which must be in English.
   

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PIANISTS:

    SECOND PIANO—CONCERTO DIVISION:
This year we will accept concerto performances with the accompaniment performed by a second pianist (or pre-recorded.)
    ONE MOVEMENT—CONCERTO DIVISION:
In the high school division, only a single concerto movement need be performed.

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"We at The American Prize wish all our laureates, contestants, judges, friends and their families health and safety during this difficult time."
---DK

Friday, May 22, 2020

Finalists: STAGE DIRECTORS (opera)—The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, 2019-20

CNR in "The Life of Reilly"

The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.

The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, chief judge, is pleased to announce NATIONAL FINALIST stage directors for 2019-20 —The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, in the OPERA division. Congratulations!

(There are two divisions this year—one for opera directors, a second for theater and music theater directors. First-place awards will be presented in each category. The MUSICAL THEATER division of the directing competition was announced on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 5pm on this blog.)

Runners-up and winners will be selected from these lists. 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.

Charles Nelson Reilly was a Tony Award-winning actor and Broadway stage director, and an acclaimed opera director and teacher. Far more than the zany television personality by which he was most often identified, Reilly nurtured the creation of a whole series of unique one-person stage plays. Most famously, he directed Julie Harris in her Tony Award-winning star turn in "The Belle of Amherst", on the life and poetry of Emily Dickinson. Among Reilly's many Broadway directing credits were Ira Levinʼs "Break a Leg", Larry Shueʼs "The Nerd", and the revival of "The Gin Game", starring Julie Harris and Charles Durning, for which Mr. Reilly was the sole American director to be nominated for a Tony in 1997. Mr. Reillyʼs career as an opera director included productions for Chicago Opera Theater, Dallas Opera, San Diego Opera, Palm Beach Opera, Toledo Opera, Milwaukee Opera and Opera Pacific. Charles Nelson Reilly and The American Prize chief judge David Katz were friends for three decades, first meeting through their mutual Hartford voice teacher, Mrs. Friedrich Schorr. Mr. Reilly served as honorary chairperson of the Friedrich Schorr Memorial Performance Prize in Voice from the competition's founding in 1990, until his death. To read more about the career of Charles Nelson Reilly, .

"At The American Prize, there is never a set number of finalists in any category or division. We also try hard to not be about "winners" and "losers," but always seek to encourage excellence, creativity and imagination. That is one reason why we post the following statement with every finalist listing."—DK

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 a number of semi-finalists and quarter 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 of the contest year.
 
We invite finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on their facebook page, tweeting the news, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog. A sample announcement may be found at the end of the post.


(REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.


NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Directing—The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, 2019-20, opera division 

Dean Anthony              
SUNY Potsdam—Crane School of Music   
Potsdam  NY                
MAYO (Cipullo)

Marc Callahan             
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill  NC         
One Who Says Yes (Der Jasager) (Weill)         

Marc Callahan             
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill  NC         
Alcina (Handel)

Tracelyn Gesteland            
University of South Dakota Opera     
Vermillion  SD         
The Consul            

Rachel M. Harris
Heartland Opera    
Joplin   MO                    
La Boheme   

Rachel M. Harris
University of Missouri
Kansas City  MO         
La Finta Giardiniera (Mozart)

Rachel M. Harris
Loyola University
New Orleans  LA    
New Orleans  LA         
Cendrillon  (Massenet)        

Melanie Helton
Michigan State University Opera Theatre   
East Lansing  MI                    
Die Fledermaus        

David Holley
University of NC—Greensboro
Greensboro NC                    
Falstaff              

Dr. Leigh Holman
University of Colorado Boulder       
Boulder  CO         
Eugene Onegin         

Joshua  May
Schwob School of Music—Columbus State University  
Columbus GA         
Cendrillon (Viradot) 

Dugg McDonough            
Turner-Fischer Center for Opera at Louisiana State University  
Baton Rouge LA         
Elizabeth Cree (Puts)       

Josh Shaw
Pacific Opera Project
Los Angeles CA         
Madama Butterfly     

Javque Trussel      
Purchase Opera, Conservatory of  Music—SUNY    
Purchase NY            
Confession, Suor Angelica, Gianni Schicchi       

Copland Woodruff             
Lawrence University
Appleton WI         
Mass (Bernstein)


*** 

Congratulations to all finalists.

We invite 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! Our ensemble has 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 results in the 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.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Winners: MEN in ART SONG & ORATORIO, The Friedrich & Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards, 2019-20

Schorr as Wotan, Bayreuth

The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.
 


The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, founder and chief judge, is honored to announce the winners, runners-up, honorable mentions and citation recipient of The American Prize in Vocal Performance—men in art song, 2019-20—The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards. 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 2018-19, based on submitted recordings.

REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.


The American Prize in Vocal Performance—men in art song (professional division),  2019-20, The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards

The American Prize winner:
Bryan Pinkall 
Manhatan KS

Bryan Pinkall 
Dr. Bryan Pinkall is an Assistant Professor of Voice at Kansas State University.  He is a Grammy-winning soloist and chorister with the Kansas City Chorale and has worked in production management for the Emmy-winning 2014 Olympic Winter Games Opening Ceremony in Sochi, Russia, the 2016 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and the World Meeting of Families Papal Mass in Philadelphia.

Dr. Pinkall was a Kauffman Scholar at the University of Missouri Kansas City (DMA) and an Ellen Battell Stoeckel Fellow at Yale University.  He was named Distinguished Kansan of the Year in Performing Arts in 2014 by the Topeka Capital Journal and was a National Quarterfinalist for the Grammy Music Educator Award in 2018 & 2019.

Dr. Pinkall received his solo Carnegie Hall debut in 2014 and his World War recitals have premiered many new works and lost music, with audio/visual content, to audiences around the world including the Eisenhower Presidential Library, National World War II Museum in New Orleans, the National World War I Museum in Kansas City, and Sydney Opera House.


2nd Place:
Patrick Muehleise 
Hoffman Estates  IL

Patrick Muehleise 
Praised for his “real musicality and finely executed coloratura,” Patrick Muehleise, tenor, is known for his “beautiful, evenly produced lyric tenor” and “pure tone” specializing in a wide variety of concert soloist repertoire. Recent engagements include Mozart’s Requiem with Xian Zhang at the Aspen Music Festival, Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 under the baton of Jane Glover, Handel’s Messiah with Winston-Salem Symphony, Mendelssohn’s Elijah with Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Bach’s B Minor Mass with Back Bay Chorale of Boston and the Charlotte Bach Festival, Reich’s The Desert Music with New World Symphony, Orff’s Carmina Burana with Long Beach Camerata, Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle with the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, and Bach’s Coffee Cantata, Handel’s Messiah and Acis and Galatea with Seraphic Fire. This summer, Mr Muehleise will return to the world-renowned Aspen Music Festival for his second year as Artist-Faculty in partnership with the Grammy-nominated Seraphic Fire Professional Choral Institute. For booking and more information, visit www.patrickmuehleise.com


3rd Place:
Daniel Kamalic 
Rochester    NY 

Daniel Kamalic 
Lyric-dramatic tenor Daniel Kamalić has been praised for his “big, stunning voice” (Chris Buchanan, Berkshire Fine Arts) with “exciting, tremendous force and a burnished tonal quality” (Larry Kellum, Town Times).  2017-18 saw international soloist debuts for Mr. Kamalić with the Israel Chamber Orchestra (Der Kaiser von Atlantis) and with the Medulin Classic Festival in Croatia (Trio Veljak), as well as with the New York State Ballet (Carmina Burana), New Opera NYC (The Golden Cockerel), New Rochelle Opera (The Merry Widow), and concerts with Miami Lyric Opera and Opera Theater of Connecticut.  Other highlights:  Lensky in Eugene Onegin (Connecticut Lyric Opera), Luigi in Il Tabarro (Garden State Opera), Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana (Pioneer Valley Symphony), Turiddu/Canio in Cav/Pag (Maryland Lyric Opera), Alfredo in La Traviata (Long Island Opera).  An champion of new music, he has performed in numerous opera premieres, most recently the title role in Sawyer’s The American Prize-winning The Scarlet Professor (Five College Opera) in Massachusetts last season, and the Gestapo Officer in the orchestral premiere of Detrick’s The Yellow Star (Garden State Opera), and the role of Pietro Botto in the upcoming premiere of Santelli's The Silk City (Garden State Opera).  http://www.kamalic.com



The American Prize in Vocal Performance—men in art song (college/university division),  2019-20, The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards

The American Prize winner:
Mats Roolvink
Singapore

Mats Roolvink
Mats is a 21-year-old Dutch-American voice student at Mozarteum University in Salzburg.  He recently won 3rd Prize at the Neapolitan Masters International Singing Competition Young Singer Category in Naples Italy.  This summer he will be taking on his first opera role as Figaro in Lyric Opera Studio Weimar’s production of Le Nozze di Figaro in Germany.  

Mats is known for his musicality, and a mature, darkly-colored sound.  "The voice has sweetness and power, very beautiful, very rare."- Barbara Bonney

Besides studying with Professor Barbara Bonney, another benefit of being in Salzburg is that Mats gets to share the stage with some of opera's greatest luminaries including Ricardo Muti, Christian Thielemann, Anna Netrebko, Anja Hateros, and Rene Pape as a member of Salzburger BachChor.

Mats grew up singing in the local school choirs in Singapore.  He spent the last two years of high school at the Walnut Hill School for the Arts in Boston. 
 

2nd Place (there was a tie):
Wooju Kim
Busan  South Korea

Wooju Kim
WOOJU KIM, a baritone currently pursuing Master of Music in The New School - Mannes School of Music in 2019 under the tutelage of Arthur Levy. He is a recipient of the Merit-based Scholarship at the Mannes. He has received B.A. at Yonsei university in 2016. He has performed as Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, the opera gala in Busan National University in 2009. He has performed several professional concerts with many orchestras while studying at Yonsei University. He also has participated Académie Internationale d'Etéde Nice, Technique Vocale er Interprétation & Interprétation chant et piano - Lorraine NUBAR Dalton BALDWIN 2010. He is also a 1st place winner from the Dream Music competition in Seoul in 2016 and Grand Prize winner of Metropolitan International Vocal Competition in New York 2018, 1st prize winner of LYRA New York International Competition 2018, 1st prize winner of CONCERT ARTISTS INTERNATIONAL competition 2019.


2nd Place (there was a tie):
Dennis Patrick Ryan     
Jewett City      CT

Dennis Patrick Ryan     
Degrees from Florida International University (BA) and the University of Kansas (MM), pursuing an Artist Diploma and DMA at the Hartt School. Roles in opera include Colline, Commendatore, Dottore Grenvil, Dr. Bartolo, Simone (Schicchi.) Concert roles include Messiah and Brahms Requiem, Schubert Mass in G. Coaches include Robert Barefield (previous Schorr winner), Doris Lang Kosloff, Stella Zambalis.


3rd Place:
Morgan Manifacier
Stony Brook    NY

Morgan Manifacier
French tenor Morgan Manifacier has sung under the direction of conductors Mark Shapiro, Daniel Beckwith, Christopher Fecteau, David Lawton, Benoît Renard, and Douglas Martin. A versatile and engaging singer, he is a sought-after interpreter of repertoire spanning from the Renaissance to the newest of contemporary music and has performed both in the United States and in Europe.

Morgan is a fellowship recipient from SongFest, the International Baroque Academy, and the AlpenKammerMusik Festival, and has performed with dell’Arte Opera Ensemble, Amherst Music Festival, Manhattan Opera Studio, Stony Brook Opera, Respiro Opera NYC, and Martina Arroyo’s Role Performance Program.

Morgan is pursuing his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Voice Performance at Stony Brook University under the tutelage of Randall Scarlata. He received his Bachelor's degree from Holy Names University, and his Master's degree from LIU, Post. Major voice teachers include Lee Steward, Neal Harrelson, and Robert C. White Jr. www.morganmanifaciertenor.com



The American Prize in Vocal Performance—men in art song (high school division),  2019-20, The Friedrich and Virginia Schorr Memorial Awards

The American Prize winner:
Pablo Rubin-Jurado
New York NY  

Pablo Rubin-Jurado
Pablo Rubin-Jurado has been in the Juilliard pre-college program since 2013, first as a composition major from 2013-2017, then as a voice major from 2017-present. He’s been in the NYYS Composition Program since 2015, and was a finalist for the ASCAP competition in both 2017 and 2019. In 2012, he sang “Amahl” in "Amahl and the Night Visitors" by Menotti at the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival. In 2013, he was the understudy for "Real Jake" in the Metropolitan Opera’s "Two Boys" by Muhly. As a guest artist at HPAF In 2014, he played “Miles” in “The Turn of the Screw” by Britten. In the American Protégé International Vocal Competition, he won first place and a judges’ distinction award in 2014, 2nd place in 2016, and sang in the 10th Anniversary Showcase at Stern Auditorium in 2017. That year, he also won 2nd place in the Hal Leonard Vocal competition. In the New York Lyric Opera competition, he won a 2nd place in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Also in 2018, he won the grand prize, best vocal technique, and most expressive performer awards in the Forte International Music Competition; a grand prize in the Enkor International Music Competition; a first place in the Rondo Vanguard Competition (which he also won in 2019); and a second place in the Schmidt Vocal Competition. That year, he also sang in the Sala Silvestre Revueltas in Mexico City as part of the play “Aqui es Opera de los Pedregales.” In 2019, he won first place in The American Prize competition for his division.


2nd Place (there was a tie):
Morgan Hunt
Tiburon  CA

Morgan Hunt
Morgan Hunt is a seasoned performer having appeared in numerous vocal, theatrical and instrumental productions. He was a national semi-finalist in NY Lyric Opera’s Vocal Competition (2018) and Classical Singer’s Vocal Competition (2019 and 2018, High School Musical Theatre). In 2018, he was a finalist in Marin Music Chest’s Vocal Competition (Classical Voice). Since 2012, he’s been cast in seventeen musical theatre productions, most recently as Jean Valjean (Les Miserables) and Corny Collins (Hairspray). A talented trombonist, Morgan was chosen to play at Carnegie Hall with the Honors Performance Series Band (2016) and at the Apollo Theater during the NY Jazz Festival (2017). He's a member of his high school’s Advanced Jazz and Symphonic Bands. Morgan is finishing up his junior year in high school and is planning to study Music/ Performing Arts in college.
 

2nd Place (there was a tie):
Nathan Schludecker   
Terre Haute  IN     

Nathan Schludecker   
Baritone, Nathan Schludecker, from Terre Haute, Indiana, is a freshman at the University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music studying Voice under the tutelage of renowned Bass-Baritone, Kenneth Shaw. Before attending CCM, he studied with Dr. Colleen M. Davis in her private studio.

Nathan has won many awards. They include awards from National YoungArts, the Schmidt Vocal Competition in Chicago, NATS, the Hal Leonard Vocal Competition, and the Classical Singer Competition.
           
Nathan has attended several summer programs. He has attended the Boston University Tanglewood Institute and the Mikael Eliasen Voice Program at the Curtis Institute of Music. During this past summer, Nathan performed in Falstaff at the International Summer Opera Festival of Morelia. He is currently a member of CCM’s premiere Chamber Choir under the baton of Earl Rivers. He has performed recently in L’enfant et les sortile’ges with Grammy Award winning Mezzo-Soprano, Isabel Leonard along with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Nathan will also be performing in CCM’s graduate opera, The Magic Flute. This summer, Nathan will be attending the Chautauqua Institution and LA Songfest. 


3rd Place: 
Andreas Ghosh 
New York NY

Andreas Ghosh 
Andreas Ghosh began formal singing training with the Metropolitan Opera’s Children’s chorus in 2009.  He entered Diller-Quaile School of Music in 2012, where he complemented his study of voice with musicianship and sight reading.  From 2016 until the present, Andreas participated in the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Evaluation Festivals.  On his most recent evaluation as a Level IV baritone, Andreas earned his highest marks for interpretation and vocal technique. He studies voice under Dr. John Howell, concentrating on French and German art songs as well as early Italian arias.  His choral commitments include the Trinitones, an acapella group at Trinity School, and the New York City Children’s Chorus.  With the NYCCC, he sings in the classical “Music on Madison” concert series, and has appeared in a Nintendo commercial, on NBC’s Today Show, and is currently recording a holiday CD to be released in December 2019 .



*** 
Congratulations!

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Finalists: CONDUCTORS (orchestra), 2019-20

If there ever were a year to encourage conductors and all performing artists—to thank them for their service to music, to music education and to enriching their players and audiences with the spiritual nourishment that only the arts can provide—this is the year. The talented individuals listed below all deserve some good news at such a dark time for the world.

We anticipate winners and runners-up in the orchestral conducting category will be announced in June. —DK


The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, founder and chief judge, is pleased to announce 2019-20 FINALIST conductors in orchestra divisions. Congratulations!

Runners-up and winners will be selected from this list. To know the exact date when results will be announced, please like our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter #AmericanPrize, where that information will be published first.

All contestants are reminded they are responsible for the viability of their online links to audition materials. Those links must remain active until complete the end of the contest year. Questions, or to make us aware of any misprints in the listings below, please email: theamericanprize@gmail.com

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 a number of semi-finalists and quarter 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 of the contest year.
 
We invite finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on their facebook page, tweeting the news, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog. A sample announcement may be found at the end of the post.

REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.

***


NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Conducting—professional orchestra division, 2019-20

Roberta Carpenter
Hradec Kralove Philharmonic 
Oconomowoc WI 

Steve Lewis
Midwest Chamber Ensemble
Overland Park KS 
 
Ryan Murray
Modesto Symphony
Modesto CA 

Victor Shlyakhtenko  
South Coast Symphony
Orange County CA 

Markand Thakar
Baltimore Chamber Orchestra 
Baltimore MD 



NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Conducting—college/university orchestra division, 2019-20

Ricardo Averbach
Miami University Symphony Orchestra 
Oxford  OH   

John Young Shik Concklin
Vanderbilt University Orchestra
Nashville TN   
 
Daniel Cook
Northwestern University Chamber Ensemble
Evanston IL   

Robert Denham
Biola Conservatory New Music 
La Mirada CA   

Dr. Thomas Dickey
OSU Symphony Orchestra
Stillwater OK   

Jeffrey Klefstad
All University Orchestra-Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh PA   

Hon Pan Benson Lee
TCU Chamber Orchestra
Fort Worth TX   

Michael Moore
Bob Jones University
Greenville SC   

Ryan Murray
Sacramento State Symphony Orchestra 
Sacramento CA   

Joel Neves
Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra 
Houghton MI   

Ian Passmore
Indiana University Symphony Orchestra 
Bloomington IN   

David A. Rahbee
University of Washington Symphony Orchestra 
Seattle WA   

Ji Hyun Yim
U-Wisconsin Symphony Orchestra
Madison WI   
Chad Hutchinson conductor
  

NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Conducting—community orchestra division, 2019-20

David Anderson
Lake Geneva Symphony Orchestra 
Lake Geneva WI   

Kaleb Benda
Oklahoma Chamber Symphony
Oklahoma City OK   

Daniel Bruce
Burlington Civic Symphony
Burlington VT   

Richard B. Brunson 
Marshfield Symphony Orchestra 
Marshfield WI   

Dr. Thomas Rainey
Williamson County Symphony Orchestra 
Round Rock TX 

Ivan Shulman
Los Angeles Doctors Symphony  
Los Angeles CA   

Michael Isadore 
Houston Civic Symphony
Houston TX   

Taka Matsunaga
Midwest Philharmonic Orchestra 
Schaumburg IL   

Verena Mosenbichler-Bryant
Durham Medical Orchestra
Durham  NC   

Mark Perlman 
Willamette Falls Symphony, Tualatin
Oregon City and Tualatin OR   

David P. Sartor
Parthenon Chamber Orchestra 
Nashville TN   

Martha Stoddard
Oakland Civic Orchestra 
Oakland CA   

Scott E. Woodard 
Charleston Chamber Orchestra  
Charleston WV   

Ji Hyun Yim
Madison Medical Orchestra 
Madison WI


NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Conducting—youth & school  orchestra division, 2019-20

Orlando Cela
North Carolina Governor's School  Orchestra
Arlington MA   

Mary Gerard
All About Music San Diego
San Diego CA   

Michael Webster
Houston Youth Symphony
Houston TX   

Kevin Pearce
Lone Star Youth Orchestra
Irving  TX   

Ulli Reiner
Bernardo Heights/Twin Peaks HS Symphony
Poway CA 

Alex Wise
MISA Summer Festival Youth Orchestra 
Shanghai China   

Michael Shane Wittenburg
Elite Academy for Strings Chamber 
Englewood Cliffs  NJ   



***

We invite 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 results 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, May 19, 2020

FInalists: STAGE DIRECTORS (theater/musical theater), The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, 2019-20

CNR in "The Life of Reilly"

The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.

The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, chief judge, is pleased to announce NATIONAL FINALIST stage directors for 2019-20 —The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, in the THEATER/MUSICAL THEATER division. Congratulations!

(There are two divisions this year—one for opera directors, a second for theater and music theater directors. First-place awards will be presented in each category. The OPERA division of the directing competition will be announced on Friday, May 22, 2020 at 5pm.)

Runners-up and winners will be selected from these lists. 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.

Charles Nelson Reilly was a Tony Award-winning actor and Broadway stage director, and an acclaimed opera director and teacher. Far more than the zany television personality by which he was most often identified, Reilly nurtured the creation of a whole series of unique one-person stage plays. Most famously, he directed Julie Harris in her Tony Award-winning star turn in "The Belle of Amherst", on the life and poetry of Emily Dickinson. Among Reilly's many Broadway directing credits were Ira Levinʼs "Break a Leg", Larry Shueʼs "The Nerd", and the revival of "The Gin Game", starring Julie Harris and Charles Durning, for which Mr. Reilly was the sole American director to be nominated for a Tony in 1997. Mr. Reillyʼs career as an opera director included productions for Chicago Opera Theater, Dallas Opera, San Diego Opera, Palm Beach Opera, Toledo Opera, Milwaukee Opera and Opera Pacific. Charles Nelson Reilly and The American Prize chief judge David Katz were friends for three decades, first meeting through their mutual Hartford voice teacher, Mrs. Friedrich Schorr. Mr. Reilly served as honorary chairperson of the Friedrich Schorr Memorial Performance Prize in Voice from the competition's founding in 1990, until his death. To read more about the career of Charles Nelson Reilly, .

"At The American Prize, there is never a set number of finalists in any category or division. We also try hard to not be about "winners" and "losers," but always seek to encourage excellence, creativity and imagination. That is one reason why we post the following statement with every finalist listing."—DK

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 a number of semi-finalists and quarter 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 of the contest year.
 
We invite finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on their facebook page, tweeting the news, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog. A sample announcement may be found at the end of the post.


(REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.


NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Directing—The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, 2019-20, theater/musical theater division

Belinda Andrews-Smith        
Denison University 
Granville OH         
Chicago        

Geoffrey Arndt
Saint Patrick Summer Theatre           
Chicago  IL       
Sweeney Todd

Geoffrey Arndt
Saint Patrick High School      
Chicago  IL       
We All Rise Above

Katharine Clarke
Endicott College   
Beverly  MA                    
Shrek the Musical     

Lori Lane
Artios Academies of Greenville       
Greenville SC       
Jane Eyre the Musical      

Dr Darren P. Lawson
Bob Jones University
Greenville SC         
Titanic: The Musical  

Joshua May
Schwob School of Music—Columbus State University    
Columbus GA                    
Speed Dating Tonight!

David Ronis
University of Wisconsin—Madison          
Madison  WI         
Into The Woods             

David Schwingle            
Bob Jones University
Greenville SC    
King Lear

*** 

Congratulations to all finalists.

We invite 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! Our ensemble has 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 results in the 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.

Winners: CHAMBER MUSIC PERFORMANCE, 2019-20

The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.


The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, founder and chief judge, is honored to announce the winners and runners-up of The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2019-20, 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.

REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.


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

The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2019-20, (professional division)

The American Prize winner: 
Eason-Seregow Duo
Muncie IN

Eason-Seregow Duo
Hailed by Fanfare magazine for his “exceptional feel for elegance, wit… and tonal beauty,” saxophonist Bob Eason is currently on faculty at Austin Peay State University and Murray State University. His primary teachers include Otis Murphy, Dan Gelok, Valerie Vidal, Karen Wylie, Chris Patterson, and Theron Sharp. Bob is the soprano saxophonist and founding member of the Kenari Quartet, an ensemble that has garnered acclaim through engaging performances, festival and educational residencies, and commissioning projects. Bob Eason is an Endorsing Artist for Légère Reeds, and plays exclusively on the Signature Series reeds. (www.easonstudios.com)

A native of the Pacific Northwest, pianist Michael Seregow enjoys a multifaceted career as a performer, teacher, clinician, and recording artist. Currently on faculty at Ball State University, he has also served on the keyboard faculties at Washington State University, University of Puget Sound, and University of Oregon. Having earned a DMA from the University of Oregon, he is a recognized soloist and collaborative pianist who has performed throughout the US, United Kingdom, and Central America.  (www.michaelseregow.com)

In addition to numerous recital performances around the US, Eason and Seregow have performed as invited guest artists at the 18th Encuentro Universitario Internacional de Saxofón México in Mexico City, one of Latin America’s most important saxophone festivals, and recently gave the world premiere of a new composition for soprano saxophone and piano by composer Joel Love at the North American Saxophone Alliance Biennial Conference in Tempe, AZ.


2nd Place: 
Pegasus Chamber Ensemble
Guanajuato  GTO

Pegasus Chamber Ensemble
The Pegasus Chamber Ensemble is the premier chamber music group in the city of Guanajuato with members from the Orchestra Sinfónica de la Universidad de Guanajuato. As the resident quintet of Foro Cultural 81, we strive to give concerts of the highest quality to the community and expand the literature and knowledge of music for wind instruments by offering world premiers of contemporary composers and traditional works. Our members include Alan Monahan  founder and co-principal bassoon of the OSUG, clarinetist Heather Millette, flutist Cuahtemoc Trejo, Omar Elizalde on oboe, Jonathan Lusher on French Horn and resident composer, and Ivan Hugo Figueroa Garcia on piano.


3rd Place (there was a tie):
Szlubowska-Belsky Duo
Northbrook  IL

Szlubowska-Belsky Duo
Praised for her “warm lyricism and flawless technique” Polish violinist Marta Szlubowska is a sought-after soloist, chamber musician, and teacher, whose concerts have taken her to over 15 countries throughout Europe and Americas. Since 2004 she has been the Concertmaster and Soloist of the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra. Critically acclaimed as "a passionate pianist and scholar," Svetlana Belsky is an in-demand recitalist and chamber pianist, who has has appeared in Europe, Asia, Canada, and throughout the United States. Szlubowska and Belsky began their collaboration in 2017. This album, Myth and Romance: Music for Violin and Piano by Polish Composers, is the result. The CD has earned high critical praise: "Stunningly beautiful";  "wonderfully fantastical... Szlubowska's virtuosity really takes off and Belsky has the most delicious of light touches… Communication between the two players is a joy. Hats off to Szlubowska and Belsky for giving such a concentrated, successful reading".


3rd Place (there was a tie):
Duo MemDi
Decorah IA

Duo MemDi
Award-winning Duo MemDi was founded by violinist Igor Kalnin and pianist Rochelle Sennet in the summer of 2010, when they served on the faculty at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan. The objective of Duo MemDi is to perform music that embraces the diversity of world cultures. Particularly, they focus on commissioning and performing music of composers from underrepresented groups. They believe that classical music should be an integral part of the diversity, inclusivity and equality movement, and serve as an indispensable tool in promoting social justice. All of the Duo’s live performances are from memory – a rare feat in the world of chamber music. They feel that it allows for a connection to composers’ ideas in a more holistic, insightful way. These ideals inspired the name of the duo: Mem[ory] and Di[versity] = MemDi. Their debut recording “Gathering Shatters” was released on Albany Records in 2018.
 

The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2019-20, (college/university division)

The American Prize winner:
Khroma Quartet
The Colony  TX

Khroma Quartet
The Khroma Saxophone Quartet was founded at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in  the  Fall  of  2018.The  name  Khroma represents  the  nuance  of  sonic  colors which  enables  the ensemble to perform a variety of styles and genres ranging from transcriptions to contemporary works.The members come from unique and decorated backgrounds, allowing the quartet to be informed by an accumulation of experiences and saxophone pedigrees. The group is comprised of Doctor of Musical Arts candidate Wilson Poffenberger (tenor), and Master of Music students Scott  Augustine  (alto),  Michael  Chapa (baritone),  and  Anne  Kunkle  (soprano). The quartet was invited to perform at the 2018 Midwest Clinic in Chicago, IL and received the silver medal at the 2019 Fischoff National Chamber Competition.


2nd Place:
Tsukervanik-Liu Duo
Arcadia  CA 

Tsukervanik-Liu Duo
Founded by Uzbekistan violinist Anna Tsukervanik and Taiwanese guitarist Ming-Jui Liu, Tsukervanik-Liu Duo performs both essential and rarely-performed repertoire including new works from the twenty-first century. Both acclaimed musicians in their own right, Anna worked and performed with such distinguished artists as Ilya Kaler, Lawrence Dutton of the Emerson String Quartet, Mark Jackobs, Yael Weiss, and Ralph Kirshbaum, while Ming-Jui, as a soloist and a chamber musician he was invited to perform in Taiwan, Brazil, China, and the United States. In 2018, Ming-Jui was a festival artist and judge in the 4th Qinling Mountains International Guitar Festival (Shaanxi, China).


3rd Place:
The Raritan Trio
Egg Harbor  NJ

The Raritan Trio
The Raritan Trio brings together three young musicians of exceptional talent, passion and experience. Formed in January 2019 at Mason Gross School of the Arts- Rutgers University, New Jersey, the trio consists of pianist Alexander Bui, violinist Yu Ouyang, and cellist Jiun-Ru Wang. Born in three different countries, the artists combine their individual cultures and personalities to create wonderful music together.

Coached by Carmit Zori, the Raritan Trio has achieved the highest esteem such as winning the Rutgers Chamber Music Competition, receiving a full fellowship to Mimir Chamber Music Festival, and being invited to participate in Carnegie Hall’s Audience Engagement Intensive program. Their performance experiences include various venues throughout North America, Europe and Asia. Having a deep passion and love for music, the Raritan Trio hopes to spread and perform classical music around the world.

The name of the Raritan Trio was inspired by the Raritan River that is across from the Mason Gross School of the Arts. The river resembles their warm spirit in hoping that they will leave a long-lasting and meaningful impact to their audiences.
 

The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance, 2019-20, (high school division)

The American Prize winner:
Vivo String Quartet 
Pittsburgh PA

Vivo String Quartet 
The Vivo String Quartet are members at the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra and students of North Allegheny High School from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Composed of violinists Enoch Hsiao (senior, student of Rachel Stegeman) and Carolyn Carr (junior, student of Rachel Stegeman), violist Futen Wang (junior, student of Marylène Gingras-Roy), and cellist Yunshu Li (sophomore, student of Katya Janpoladyan). Winners of the 2018-19 Montgomery Fellowship award, sponsored by Chamber Music Pittsburgh, they study chamber music with Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO) Principal Second Violin Jeremy Black and Pittsburgh Opera Orchestra concertmaster Charles Stegeman. They also are 2019 Pittsburgh Concert Society Young Artist Award winners. As passionate students of classical music, all are accomplished musicians who have appeared as soloists with various orchestras. Dedicated to promoting chamber music in the Pittsburgh community, Vivo performed pre-concert for "Music for the Spirit: A Concert for Peace and Unity" at Heinz Hall in November 2018; and they opened the conference "Nonprofits and the Call to Moral Leadership" sponsored by the Heinz Endowments at the August Wilson Cultural Center this fall - both events that honored the victims of the Tree of Life tragedy.


2nd Place: 
Quantum Quartet
Carrollton TX  

Quantum Quartet
Formed in the summer of 2016 in Carrollton, Texas, the Quantum Quartet consists of Bruce Moe, Ekdev Rajkitkul, Austin Dreyer, and Peyton Joffre. Members of the group have received many honors, including Silver Medal in the 46th Annual Fischoff Competition, 1st prize in the 4th Edition of the ENKOR International Music Chamber Music Competition, 1st place at 6th Annual Coltman Chamber Music Competition, 1st place at  11th annual Houston Underground Quartet Competition, 3rd Place in the 2018-2019 season of The American Prize, various other top finishes in the Houston Underground Saxophone Competition (Junior Division and High School Division), Texas All-State Band placement, and more. In addition to their competitive success, they have also had the privilege of being showcased in Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall. Quantum Quartet attend Hebron High School.


3rd Place:  
Trio Centauri
San Jose CA

Trio Centauri
Formed in 2018, Trio Centauri is comprised of award-winning San Francisco Bay Area musicians: violinist Angela Tsang (15), cellist Fiona Tsang (14), and pianist Hannah Lin (17). Coached by incredible musicians Meichuan Song and Kaichi Zhu, Trio Centauri received awards from ENKOR Chamber Music Competition and Santa Cruz Baroque Festival Youth Chamber Music Competition in 2019.
    As active members of Bay Area Youth Music Society, Angela, Fiona, and Hannah have all received the Presidential Volunteer Service Award five years in a row. Besides performing in charity concerts three times a year, they play solo, ensemble, and orchestra works every other week at retirement and assisted living communities to bring the joy of live classical music to senior residences.
    Through excellent collaboration and a shared passion for music, Trio Centauri has become a unique group of musicians who are the best of friends.


Finalist Honorable Mention: 
Zeitlos Trio
Palo Alto  CA

Zeitlos Trio
Formed under the California Music Preparatory Academy, the Zeitlos Trio establishes itself as an ensemble of the highest caliber.  Violinist Laura Kim, cellist Shawn Hsu, and pianist Tia Chang all have prominent solo, orchestral, and chamber music experiences.  Under the tutelage of Jonathan Koh, the Zeitlos Trio is led to further their appreciation of the stories that each piece of music accompanies. With repertoires ranging from Mendelssohn to Schubert, these three young artists present music with passion and natural musicality.  They have won numerous prizes, including the first prize of VOCE State, the third prize of VOCE and the US Open Music Competition.  They also had the honor of performing in a masterclass given by the Grammy award winning Parker Quartet.



*** 
Congratulations!

Monday, May 18, 2020

Finalists: CONDUCTORS (orchestral programming), The Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award, 2019-20


Vytautas Marijosius
The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.


The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, founder and chief judge, is pleased to announce 2019-20 FINALIST conductors in orchestral programming, The Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award. Congratulations!

Commenting on this year's contest, Maestro Katz writes: "Absolutely fascinating. A very strong, competitive field. I suppose a contest about orchestral programming would in and of itself attract conductors who were good at it, but perhaps never more impressively than by this year's finalists."

The American Prize—Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award in Orchestral Programming honors the memory of the great Lithuanian conductor, Maestro Vytautas Marijosius, music director of the Lithuanian State Opera, and for nearly thirty-five years Director of Orchestral Activities at the Hartt School of Music. The Prize recognizes and rewards the best achievement in the unique field of orchestral programming, where the selection of repertoire by knowledgeable, creative and courageous music directors builds orchestras and audiences, educates young people and adults, and enriches the community.  

Runners-up and winners will be selected from this list. To know the exact date when results will be announced, please like our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter #AmericanPrize, where that information will be published first.

Questions, or to make us aware of any misprints in the listings below, please email: theamericanprize@gmail.com

"At The American Prize, there is never a set number of finalists in any category or division. We also try hard to not be about "winners" and "losers," but always seek to encourage excellence, creativity and imagination. That is one reason why we post the following statement with every finalist listing."—DK

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 a number of semi-finalists and quarter 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 of the contest year.
 
We invite finalists to make the most of their selection by announcing it on their facebook page, tweeting the news, and including a link to this announcement on their website or blog. A sample announcement may be found at the end of the post.

REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.


 
NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Orchestral Programming / Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award—professional and college/university division, 2019-20

Dr. Brian Coffill
The Randolph-Macon Ensemble 
Randolph-Macon College        
Ashland VA            

Dr. Thomas Dickey
OSU Symphony Orchestra
Stillwater  OK  

Vladimir Kulenovic            
Lake Forest Symphony  
Lake Forest IL

Jason Lim
McKinney Philharmonic
McKinney TX

Nathaniel F. Parker
Kennesaw State University Symphony        
Kennesaw  GA   

Nadya Potemkina            
Wesleyan University Orchestra        
Middletown  CT   

David A. Rahbee
University of Washington Symphony Orchestra    
Seattle WA   

Rachel L.  Waddell
University of Rochester Orchestras        
Rochester   NY   



NATIONAL FINALISTS: The American Prize in Orchestral Programming / Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award—community division, 2019-20

Donald L. Appert
Clark College Orchestra
Vancouver   WA                  

Donald L. Appert
The Jewish Community Orchestra of Portland
Portland  OR                  

John B.Gordon
Williamson County Symphony Orchestra 
Round Rock  TX 
Daniel Rainey, conductor                

David William Oertel
Starlight Symphony Orchestra         
Wimberley   TX                  

Mark Perlman
Willamette Falls Symphony
Oregon City and Tualatin  OR                  

James  Villani
Manassas Symphony Orchestra          
Manassas  VA      


***

We invite 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 results in my division in 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.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Winners: PIANISTS (solo division), 2019-20


The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.

The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, founder and chief judge, is honored to announce the winners and runners-up of The American Prize in Piano Performance (solo), 2019-20, 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

REMINDER: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21, In addition, we will accept applications from CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by the new extended deadline date of Monday, June 23, 2020. Applications from COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS MARKETERS and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Monday, July 20, 2020. Visit theamericanprize.org for complete contest information.


The American Prize in Piano Performance (solo), 2019-20, (professional division)

The American Prize winner:
Lei Weng   
Greeley    CO 

Lei Weng   
Hailed as “a colorist of exemplary control” by the New York Concert Review for his sold-out Carnegie Hall debut, he has performed at prestigious venues around the world including New York’s Carnegie Hall and Merkin Concert Hall, Chicago Culture Center, Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., China National Center for Performing Arts, Taiwan National Concert Hall and Kaohsiung Cultural Center, Royal College of Music (UK), Banff Center (Canada), Peterskirche (Vienna), Basilica di San Pietro (Italy), Singapore National University, and major universities and conservatories throughout Asia. He has performed at such music festivals as Tanglewood Music Festival, TCU Cliburn Institute, Messiaen Festival (University of Chicago), Music Fest Perugia (Italy), Pianoforte-Fest Meissen (Germany), Saarburg Festival (Germany), Sarasota Festival, Vianden Festival (Luxemburg), Rocky Ridge Music Center and Breckenridge Music Festival.

As a frequent concerto soloist, he has appeared with such conductors as Gerhardt Zimmerman, Steven Smith, Uri Segal, Robert Olson, Geoffrey Simon, Glen Cortese, Wes Kenney, Lingfen Wu, Zushan Bian, and with more than thirty orchestras in the U.S., Europe and Asia, including the Symphony Orchestras of Fort Worth, Fort Collins, Gimhae (Korea), Kaohsiung (Taiwan), Alicante (Spain), Pegugia (Italy), Campinas (Brazil), Beijing (China), Costa Rica, Breckinridge Music Festival, and the China National Symphony Orchestra and Chorus


2nd Place:
Yuting Zhou   
New York   NY  

Yuting Zhou   
Pianist Yuting Zhou is currently earning her Doctor of Musical Arts degree at Manhattan School of Music from the studio of Dr. Joanne Polk. She has performed in numerous different parts of the world. Notable venues she has concertized at include Carnegie Hall (US), Kostroma Philharmonic Hall (Russia), Hong Kong Cultural Centre, and Xinghai Concert Hall (China), and many more. Recently, she was invited to perform in Merkin Concert Hall (US), Ehrbar Hall (Austria), and Teatro Colón(Argentina). She received 15 major competition awards, including the First Prize, Best Liszt Interpretation Award and Best American Composer Interpretation Award at the Liszt-Garrison Festival & International Piano Competition. Ms. Zhou has appeared on several media platforms. Recent ones include ABC News, NBC News, PeaceEver TV, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, the China Times, Guangzhou Daily, Guangdong Television, and FM Ximalaya Radio, among others. For more information, please visit www.YutingZhou.com


3rd Place:
John Kamfonas    
Devon PA 

John Kamfonas    
American pianist John Kamfonas has given performances internationally, from New York to India to Paris, described as possessing "a grandeur that lifted the music into the sublime...and a delicacy that took one's breath away." (National Herald, New York) As an improvising classical pianist, Mr. Kamfonas interweaves repertoire ranging from Bach and Beethoven to Debussy and Barber among spontaneous musical fantasies. He has performed in numerous festivals in the US and abroad and has recently given solo concerts at Merkin Hall, Steinway Hall, Salle Cortot (Paris), Cité Internationale des Arts de Paris, and the Columbia Global Center (Paris). Mr. Kamfonas recently conducted residencies at the Cité Internationale des Arts and as a Harriet Hale Woolley Scholar at the Fondation des Etats-Unis in Paris where part of his recital was nationally televised in 2016. He holds degrees from Columbia University, Manhattan School of Music, and the Ecole Normale de Musique in Paris.
 


The American Prize in Piano Performance (solo), 2019-20, (college/university division)

The American Prize winner:
Chenyu Wang   
Hartford   CT  

Chenyu Wang   
Born in China, Chenyu Wang began playing the piano at the age of five and gave public performances at the age of eight. She received her early trainings at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music Middle School. She received her Bachelor of Music degree from Eastman School of Music under the tutelage of Prof. Barry Snyder in 2015, and her Master of Music degree from Indiana Unviersity, Bloomington, under the tutelage of Prof. Emile Naoumoff in 2017. She is currently a Doctor of Musical Arts student at the Hartt School of Music, University of Hartford, under the tutelage of Prof. Paul Rutman. She is a prize-winner of many competitions, including the Kulangsu Piano Competition and Schoenbrunn Piano Competition in China, The eMuse international piano competition and Bradshaw& Buono International Piano Competition. She has performed across the North America, China and Europe.


2nd Place:
Shun-Jung Hsu    
Madison    WI

Shun-Jung Hsu    
Taiwanese pianist Shun-Jung Hsu maintains an active profile across the United States, Europe, and Asia as a soloist and chamber musician. Winner of 2018 American Protege International Competition of Romantic Music, Shun-Jung has appeared in many cities in U.S, including venues such as Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Missouri Theatre (MO), E. Desmond Lee Concert Hall (MO), Sursa Performance Hall (IN), and Stoughton Opera House (WI). She has also given numerous performances elsewhere in Austria, Germany and Portugal and Taiwan. Shun-Jung holds a MM degree from University of Missouri-Columbia where she studied with Dr. Peter Miyamoto as a recipient of full tuition scholarship and stipend. Currently she is pursuing her DMA degree at University of Wisconsin-Madison with scholarships under the tutelage of pianist Christopher Taylor. Other influential teachers have included Aquiles Delle Vigne, Carmen Piazzini, Chun Pan, Hsing-Chwen Hsin, Mamiko Suda, Meng-Chieh Liu, and Nadezda N. Demianova.
https://www.shunjunghsu.com/
 

3rd Place:
Eunhae Choi   
Savoy IL

Eunhae Choi   
An active pianist and lifelong educator, Eunhae Choi is currently a Doctoral candidate for the Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance and Literature at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She was awarded scholarships and fellowships while she was studying. Also, she holds a Master of Music degree at University of Texas at Austin, a Bachelor of Music degree at Hanyang University in South Korea. Her primary teachers include Prof. William Heiles, Gregory Allen, Young-In Lee, and Lilie Jang. As a dedicated teacher, Ms. Choi has studied Piano Pedagogy as her cognate minor while her doctoral studies and her teaching experience includes serving as the instructor from Piano Project program at the UT Austin and served as a President of the U of I Music Teachers National Association Collegiate chapter in 2016-2017. She was invited to present at the ISMTA conference in 2017 and now teaching at Piano Laboratory Program at Illinois. Also, she is a member of ensemble Seonmul which presents fusion of Korean traditional and western music.


Finalist Honorable Mention:
Igor Filipe Do Amaral 
New York   NY

Igor Filipe Do Amaral 
 Pianist Igor Amaral is a native of Macao. He graduated from the Wright State University as a scholarship student of Dr. Jackson Leung. While being awarded the prestigious music scholarship, Igor received Doctoral of Musical Arts in Piano Performance and holds two Master of Music degrees in Piano Performance and Piano Pedagogy from Michigan State University, where his main teachers were Prof. and Artist in Resident Panayis Lyras, Dr. Derek Polischuk and Prof. Margarita Shevchenko. Igor is currently studying with Prof. Simone Dinnerstein at the Mannes School of Music. Igor received numerous prizes and awards including first prize winner in The American Protégé International Competition, winner of the Wright State University Concerto Competition, and winner of the WSU Honor Award. He has performed extensively in North America, Europe and Asia including Carnegie Hall, Ernst C. Stiefel Hall, Giles-Lefebvre Concert Hall, Teatro Jovellanos,  Guangzhou Xinghai Concert Hall, Macao Cultural Center.



The American Prize in Piano Performance (solo), 2019-20, (high school division)

The American Prize winner:
Christopher Zhu    
West Roxbury   MA

Christopher Zhu    
Christopher “Chris” Zhu, a 16-year-old native Bostonian, began his piano studies at the age of five. He currently studies with Helena Vesterman. Since his first competition at the age of eight, Chris has been a second prize winner of Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition, four-time first prize winner at the Massachusetts Music Teachers Association Bay State Contest, two-time prizewinner at the Steinway Society of Massachusetts Piano Competition, and recently a first prize winner in the senior division of URI piano extravaganza and a second prize winner in the intermediate group of American Protege International Piano and String Competition. In addition, as an accomplished violinist, Chris has received the top prize from the Roman Totenberg Young Strings Competition and played First Violin for orchestras at New England Conservatory Prep School and Boston Youth Symphony. He has performed at various venues including Carnegie Hall and Steinway Hall in New York, and Symphony Hall in Boston.
 

2nd Place:
Marc Soong  
Alhambra   CA

Marc Soong  
Marc Soong has shown a keen interest in classical music since the age of three. He has won numerous national and international piano competitions including the Los Angeles Young Musicians International Competition, San Jose International Piano Competition, American Protege International Piano and String Competition, Redlands Bowl Young Artists Competition, Classics Alive Young Artists Competition, Los Angeles International Liszt Competition, Steinway Piano Competition, Great Composers Music International Competition, and many others. Soong won the Grand Prize of the 2018 ENKOR International Music Competition. He has been selected as a featured performer on NPR's "From the Top" a radio program broadcast nationally. Soong studies piano under the guidance of Professor Daniel Pollack and Dr. Vladimir Khomyakov at USC Thornton School of Music. He has performed in many venues such as the Stern Auditorium Perelman Stage and Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York and many others. Website: www.marcsoongpianist.com
 

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Congratulations!