Blog | Mar 4

Conservatory Students on Stage

Students of the full-scholarship Conservatory at Gifted Music School routinely bring home incredible prizes from national and local competitions

Ellen Hayashi (violin) was a finalist in both the Blount Slawson Young Artist Competition and the Coeur D’Alene National Young Artists’ Competition. Evelyn Meiwes (violin) is a winner of the American Fork Symphony Salute to Youth auditions 2019 and the Timpanogos Symphony Salute to Youth auditions 2019.

In the 2020 Utah Music Teachers Association Competition, Deann Huang (violin) placed first in the Elementary Division; Della Gardner (violin) placed first in the Junior High Division; Makenzie Hart (violin) placed first and Sarah Kendell (violin) placed second in the Senior Division, and alumnus Brenn Parker (flute) placed first in the Collegiate Division! A Winners Recital will be held at the Temple Square Assembly Hall March 13, 2020 at 7:30 p.m.

In February 2020, students of the Gifted Music School Conservatory impressed the judges of the Utah Symphony Youth Guild Competition, securing five of six string solo spots, one of two ensemble spots, three of six piano solo spots, and three honorable mentions.* In 2019, seven of the ten soloists in Utah Symphony’s Salute to Youth concert were students of the Gifted Music School.

Gifted Music School students are not only wonderful soloists, but also top-level collaborative musicians. Ellen Hayashi (violin) and Megan Tandar (piano) won first prize as “Mellen Duo” in the Great Composers Series, Best Mendelssohn Performance. Benson Marshall (cello), Ellen Hayashi (violin), Abby Smith (viola), and Rachel Call (violin) made up The BEAR Quartet for the last two years. The BEAR won first prize in both the Chamber Competition of the ENKOR International Music Competition and the St. Paul String Quartet Competition, and was a finalist in the Coltman Chamber Music Competition. This nationally-recognized string quartet was featured on NPR’s From The Top and won Best of State for Youth Small Ensemble.

In addition to winning prizes in large national and state level competitions, Gifted Music School students shine as leaders in their own schools and communities. Ellie Wirthlin (cello) was chosen as the only sophomore to play in Olympus High School’s Concerto Night this year, and performed the role of the Wicked Stepmother in her school’s production of Cinderella last spring. During the summer, she and Breighton Papac (cello) played all day Saturday for four weeks at the Salt Lake Farmer’s Market to raise funds for GMS. Vivian Stewart (violin) was one of eight students spotlighted at Wasatch Jr. High for the “Warriors of Excellence” award; the winners were interviewed and featured in a documentary at a school assembly.

Every single musician in the Conservatory at Gifted Music School elevates the program with their musicianship, their excellence, and their humanity. You will not want to miss our performance at the 10th Anniversary Gala at Abravanel Hall on May 18, 2020.

The following students of Gifted Music School will perform at the Utah Symphony Youth Guild Winner’s Recital on March 15, 2020 at Westminster College’s Vieve Gore Concert Hall at 4:00pm: 

Isabella Bueno, piano
Eliza Hart, violin
Makenzie Hart, violin
Aryanna Holmes, violin
Maya Marsh, piano
Evelyn Meiwes, violin
Ezekiel Sokoloff, violin
Megan Tandar, piano
Aryanna Holmes and Ezekiel Sokoloff, violin duo

Honorable mentions:
Della Garner, violin
Ellen Hayashi, violin
Camille Cole, Ellen Hayashi, Breighton Papac, and Ezekiel Sokoloff, string quartet