University of South Florida (USF) College of The Arts (CoTA)

Four Voice Students Win 1st Prize at Annual NATS Competition

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Four USF voice students from the studio of Music Professor Kyoung Cho won first prize in their age group at the  2014 Tampa Bay chapter of National Association of Teachers of Singing's (NATS) student audition (annual vocal competition).

“We’re very proud of our students’ achievements,” said Professor Cho. “It’s very rare that all of our students would win first prizes at the same competition.”

Jesse Martin (MM) won  1st Prize in the Classic Graduate men’s category. Jesse Lancaster (BS) won in two categories: 1st Prize in Classical Senior men’s category and 1st Prize in Musical Theater Senior men’s category. Jeremiah Pegan (BM) and Nicu Brouillette (BS) tied for 1st Prize in the Classical Junior men’s category. The students performed opera arias and songs by Schubert, Mozart, Menotti, Handel and Moore.

The Tampa Bay NATS competition is held annually, usually during the third week of February. This year, there were more than 120 student competitors from Florida College, Florida Southern College, Florida Gulf Coast University, State College of Florida, Southeastern University,  University of Tampa, and USF, as well as many private voice studios and high schools.

“I try to encourage my students to compete in this event each year,” Professor Cho said. “It gives them the opportunity to hear other singers and to better evaluate their own performance. They work very hard to prepare for it, so it is also an excellent learning opportunity.”

“And when our students win like this, it makes a significant impression on the high school students at the conference and can help with future recruiting.”

Martin, Lancaster, Pegan, and Brouillette are now eligible to represent USF and the Tampa Bay Chapter at the NATS Southeastern  regional competition in Georgia at the end of March  where they will compete against students from Georgia, Alabama, and Florida.

The National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) is a professional organization for singing teachers, and is the largest association of its kind in the world. There are more than 6,500 members in 27 countries around the world


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