MacTaggart Department of Music announces juried prize winners

Lang Zhao '11 was surprised when he learned that Marshall Kimball, assistant professor of music, had nominated him during the fall semester for the William L. Buelow Juried Prize. The international student, who plans to study economics, will use the two-credit hour prize to pursue his study of percussion in the spring.

Dr. Dan Monek, chair of the Edward E. MacTaggart Department of Music, announced just before winter break that Zhao and Cristin Donhauser '08 were awarded juried prizes for the spring semester. Donhauser's instructor, Debra Rentz, nominated her for the William A. and Prudence A. Fields Juried Prize. Both Lang and Donhauser will receive monetary waivers that will allow them to receive a two credit hour double lesson this semester.

"The receipt of a juried prize represents a combination of hard work and talent," Monek said. "Applied study requires a daily individual commitment to long hours of practice. This semester's winners are to be commended for not only their talent, but the dedication they bring to their performance studies."

Each semester, juried prizes are given to students who have been nominated by their instructors and who have met additional criteria specific to each award. Faculty judges awarded the Buelow Prize to Zhao for his outstanding work in his applied music study of percussion.

"I am looking forward to figuring out how to use it," Zhao said. "I just want to get more chances to study."

Monek describes Zhao as one of the most dedicated and hard-working students he has ever known.

"When I arrive at 8 a.m., he is already in the building practicing," Monek said. "He seems to find every opportunity to work on his musical skills. It is somewhat unusual for a first semester freshman to win a juried prize, but there is no doubt that Lang is deserving of the award."

Zhao, the son of Yanhua Liu and Guowei Zhao, is from the Liaoning Province in China.

Donhauser, who is the daughter of Linda Donhauser, received the William A. and Prudence A. Fields Juried Prize for her outstanding applied music performance. Voice and piano students are given first consideration for the award. Hailing from Baltimore, Md., Donhauser is a music/vocal performance major who will receive a certificate in vocal pedagogy.

"I am planning to use the juried prize to further my vocal music study since I plan to study vocal performance and opera in graduate school," she said.

Monek said Donhauser is a very talented young vocalist. "If she continues to work at her current level, I expect we will be hearing a lot more from her in the future," Monek said.

Once a student is nominated for a juried prize, the student must perform before a panel of faculty judges.

Students who received honorable mentions for their work are: Lauren Berry '11 (voice), Celia Brockway '11 (voice), Jean Marie Brizendine '09 (voice), Rachel Carter '09 (voice), Britney Koser '09 (voice), Nathan Leonard '10 (voice), Casey Mercer '11 (saxophone), Jessica Pirc '08 (voice), Mary Rizzardi '11 (voice), Rachel Taylor '09 (voice), Patrick Simone '08 (voice), and Phillip DeOrsey '08 (trumpet).