Vocal students honored at statewide conference

Jonathon Roberts

On Nov. 1-2, over 30 Lawrence Conservatory voice students made another superb showing at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competition. The statewide event was held at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. Over 300 singers from around the state participated.

Lawrence students consistently receive high recognition for their work at this annual competition. According to Ken Bozeman, “though Lawrence is disadvantaged by having only 4-5 weeks to prepare, compared to the 8 weeks most schools have, we usually do quite well, and did again this year. Our singers showed very well with a high percentage of winners and finalists.”

The first day of the competition is a preliminary round, open to many singers, divided into different class brackets. Singers perform in front of a panel of judges made up of the best in vocal performers and educators.

Finalists advance to the second day and winners are chosen that evening. There is no final national competition. However, students are given monetary awards for their efforts at the statewide event.

Winning first place in their division are Tim Schmidt (Continuing Senior Men), Meg Ozaki (Senior Women), Elaine Moran (Music Theater, Lower College Division), Laura Muller (Freshman Women), and Jim Dedering (Freshman Men).

Awards were also given to Jacob Allen (second place: Music Theater, Upper Division), Eric Petersen (second place: Sophomore Men), Spencer Dorn (second place: Freshman Men), Jennifer Mathews, (third place: Senior Women), and Genevieve Tokarski (third place: Junior Women).

Other finalists included junior Susie Gates, sophomores Carolyn Kacner, Nicole Crawford, and Danissa Shultz, and freshman Brad Grimmer.

Students of Ken Bozeman are Allen, Schmidt, Kacner, Schultz, Dorn, and Grimmer. Students of Joanne Bozeman include Matthews, Tokarski, Gates, and Petersen.

Ozaki studies with Patrice Michaels, while Crawford and Muller study with Karen Leigh-Post. Dedering studies with Leigh-Post and Brian Post, while Moran studies with Rico Serbo.

Winning first place in the High School Women Division is Alisa Jordheim, student of Patrice Michaels and daughter of saxophone faculty member Steven Jordheim.

NATS is a nonprofit national organization dedicated to excellence in vocal education and research. It is the largest association of teachers of singing in the world, with over 5,000 members in the United States, Canada, and more than 25 other counties.

Congratulations to Lawrence’s exceptional vocal students and faculty!