2012 Concerto Contest:
During the fall semester, Maranatha’s Music Department hosts a concerto contest for interested and qualifying student musicians. Concerto contestants prepare a memorized movement of a concerto from the Classical period limited to 15 minutes (other selections must receive approval by the Concerto Committee). Dr. Michelle Clater points out that this particular concerto competition gives Maranatha students the opportunity to compete against their colleagues in a highly technical genre.
This year, the following six college students opted to participate in the contest:
- Claudia Burchett: Concerto for Clarinet and Piano, No. 622 (II. Adagio) by Mozart
- Elijah Walters: Concerto in C Major, Hob VIIb, No. 1 (Moderato) by Haydn
- Jessica Garrison: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra in D Major (I. Presto) by Haydn
- Garrett Holmes: Piano Concerto, No. 4 in G Major, Op. 58 (III. Rondo) by Beethoven
- Melody Steinbart: Concerto No. 5, in A Major, for Violin and Orchestra (1st movement) by Mozart
- Philip Ledgerwood: Violin Concerto in E Minor (2nd movement) by Mendelssohn
As one of the judges, Dr. Clater observed that the performers in this year’s competition diligently worked to carefully hone his or her talent. Clater was again struck by the blessing these students are and will be in the ministries of local churches, whether here in Wisconsin or wherever the Lord may place them someday.
The 2012 Concerto Contest Winner is Philip Ledgerwood. Philip receives $100 and a concert performance with Maranatha’s Symphony Orchestra during the spring semester.
Interview with the Winner, Philip Ledgerwood:
Why did you choose the selection: Violin Concerto in E Minor (2nd movement) by Mendelssohn? The selection was not what I was originally planning on playing. I was planning on preparing the final movement of the Mendelssohn Concerto for the competition. But after some deliberation with my teacher, we both felt that the second movement would be extremely effective if it would be played with great musicality, even if it was lacking in the technical difficulties of the final movement.
The event isn’t required for music majors—what motivated you to participate? I’m a performance major, so I try to perform as much as possible. If one wants to enter into the extremely competitive music world, one should work on being prepared for auditions and competitions as much as possible.
How has participating advanced your level of playing? I feel as if the real challenge will be performing with a full orchestra behind me. It will be a new experience for me, but I’m greatly looking forward to it.
In your opinion, what is the value of a competition like this? There’s always value in participating in a competition. I think it is key, though, that you prepare not with the win in mind. The hours of practice are really what matters. Without practice, you aren’t going anywhere!