Six high school seniors will compete for Westmont music scholarships at the fifth annual Music Guild Competition on Saturday, March 4, at 7 p.m. at Westmont’s Deane Chapel on lower campus. The event is free and open to the public.
The winner of the Guild Scholarship, who will be announced immediately following the event, will receive up to $10,000 in annual music scholarships funds (up to $40,000 over four years) to study at Westmont.
This year’s finalists are violist Cameron Audrus, a senior at Oak Park High School, singer Elaina Crenshaw, a music major at Ventura College, violinist Christina Dubell, a senior at Orange County School of the Arts, cellist Logan Hodgson, a senior from Sierra Madre, violinist Anna Stenzel, a homeschooled student in Illinois, and violinist Jenna Walters, a senior in the Berean Christian High School Independent Study Program in Knoxville.
The judges for this competition include Grey Brothers, professor of music, Steve Butler, professor of music, Steve Hodson, professor of music, Han Soo Kim, assistant professor of music, and Michael Shasberger, Adams professor of music and worship. The Guild Scholarship program is funded by The Guild for Music at Westmont. For information about becoming a Guild member or any aspect of this competition, please contact the Westmont Music Office at (805) 565-6040.
Prior guild winners include William Ellzey (cello, 2016), Jonathan Wong (violin, 2015), Tim Beccue (cello, 2014) and Lalia Mangione (violin, 2013).
While the judges deliberate, Chyna Charbonneau, Erik Fauss and Dr. Jeong-ah Ryu will perform Charles Martin Loeffler’s “Rhapsody for Oboe and Viola.” Wong, Sierra Farrar and Wynston Hamman will perform a string trio piece. The Kairos String Quartet, which includes Andrea Larez, Erik Fauss, Mangione and Beccue, will perform Béla Bartók’s String Quartet No. 4, Allegro Molto.
Audras, who began playing the viola in the sixth grade, is the principal violist of the Conejo Valley Youth Orchestra and is employed by the American Youth Symphony. For the past three summers, Audras has studied and performed at the Center Stage Strings Music Festival at the University of Michigan on a full scholarship. He has served as a member of a string quartet in the Colburn School of Music’s Chamber Music Association.
Crenshaw, who has been in various choirs since the age of three, participates in the small group choir at Ventura College. She loves musical theater and opera, and has performed in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (Tytania), “Into the Woods” (Bakers Wife), “The Telephone” (Lucy), “Hairspray” (Shelly), and “Die sieben Todsünden” (Anna I).
Dubell began piano at age five and added violin when she was eight. She performs with Orange County Youth Symphony Orchestra and Orange County Youth Symphony Concert Orchestra. She won a scholarship and served as concertmaster at the Irvine Music Festival, where she has performed the last two summers. She has toured London, Vienna, Prague, Barcelona and Madrid with both orchestras.
Hodgson, a dual enrollment student at Pasadena City College, is the principal cellist of the Claremont Young Musician’s orchestra and won the orchestra’s 2017 Concerto Competition. He is a member of American Youth Symphony and Debut Orchestra in Los Angeles. He has performed in several summer chamber music festivals, including El Festival Internacional Suzuki del Perú, Rocky Mountain Summer Conservatory and Credo Summer Chamber Music at Oberlin Conservatory.
For the past six years, Stenzel has performed with the Midwest Young Artists (MYA) Youth Orchestra in Highwood, Ill., serving as concertmaster and earned a Merit Scholarship. She has performed with the Knox-Galesburg Symphony, Rockford Symphony Youth Orchestra, the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra and the Lake Geneva Symphony Orchestra.
Walters, a dual enrollment student at Pellissippi State, has been accepted into the University of North Carolina’s Fine Arts School for her senior year of high school. She studied violin for seven years at the Suzuki Hart Strings Studio, where she won the practice contest competition award for two years. She has performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City and at the Nashville State Capitol.