Conrad Art Song competition winners announced

BOWLING GREEN, O.—Six singer-piano duos at Bowling Green State University’s College of Musical Arts won prizes at the 12th annual Dr. Marjorie Conrad Art Song Competition held earlier this month in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center.

The first-place winning duo in the graduate division consisted of mezzo-soprano Christine Amon from Grand Rapids, Mich., and pianist Heidi Clausius from Toledo. Amon studies with Sean Cooper, an associate professor of voice, and Clausius with Dr. Thomas Rosenkranz, an assistant professor of piano.

Second prize in the graduate division went to the duo of soprano Theresa Zapata from Grand Rapids, Mich., and pianist Tatiana Gorbunova from Sarov, Russia.  Zapata studies with Myra Merritt, a professor of voice; Gorbunova studies with Dr. Robert Satterlee, an associate professor of piano.

Third place in the graduate division went to soprano Amanda DeBoer from Papillion, Neb., and pianist Karl Larson from McFarland, Wis. DeBoer studies with Dr. Jane Rodgers, an associate professor of voice, and Larson with Rosenkranz.

First-place winner in the undergraduate division was the duo of mezzo-soprano Melissa Penkava from North Ridgeville, Ohio, and pianist Jacintha Ratnasamy from Findlay, Ohio. Penkava studies with Christopher Scholl, an associate professor of voice; Ratnasamy studies with Satterlee.

Winning second place in the undergraduate division were soprano Rachel Taylor from Oxford, Ohio, and pianist Melinda Sondag from Columbus, Ohio. Taylor studies under Cooper, and Sondag studies with Dr. Solungga Fang-tzu Liu, an associate professor of piano.

The third-place winners of the undergraduate division were soprano Cassandra Utt from Salem, Ohio, and pianist Sara Tobe from Minster, Ohio. Utt studies voice with Rodgers, and Tobe studies piano with Satterlee.

The total prize money for the competition is $6,500. All prizes were awarded in voice and piano, with the funds equally distributed between both musicians. A total of six prizes were awarded: two first prizes of $1,500 each; two second prizes of $1,000 each, and two third prizes at $750 each. The first prize-winning duos were also awarded the opportunity to perform one-half of a song recital in the Music from Bowling Green at the Manor House series at Toledo’s Wildwood Metropark.

The goal of the contest is to encourage students enrolled at BGSU to approach the art song in a serious and intense manner and enhance their learning experience.

For the third year in a row, the event was taped for a documentary to be broadcast by WBGU-PBS next fall.

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(Posted April 21, 2011 )