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Volume 26, Number 6 — June 2019

Bristol Music Club announces winners

First row, left to right: Katherine Ning, Emma Weber, Emmy Nannenga, Emily Tucker. Second row, left to right: Amy Shi, Rachel Rees, Jimmy Liu, Alex Wagner and Jacob Surber. Back row, left to right: Michael Rees and James Root
First row, left to right: Katherine Ning, Emma Weber, Emmy Nannenga, Emily Tucker. Second row, left to right: Amy Shi, Rachel Rees, Jimmy Liu, Alex Wagner and Jacob Surber. Back row, left to right: Michael Rees and James Root

May 29, 2019

On Saturday, May 4, 30 young musicians ranging from fourth grade to 12th grade competed for more than $5,000 in scholarship funds awarded by the Bristol Music Club. The auditions May 4 and the winners’ recital May 5 were held at the First Presbyterian Church of Bristol, Tennessee. Judges for the contest were Dr. Charlotte Anderson, John Haggerty, Dr. Suzanne Masters and Dr. Wayne Johnson. The 11 winners received a monetary award to be used toward continued music education.

Division I is for high school seniors who will study applied music in college. First place winner is Jimmy Liu. Liu is a seven-time winner of the Bristol Music Club scholarship auditions on piano and violin. As a student of Esther Park, his 2019 win is on piano. He is a senior at Science Hill High School and is the son of Yubiao Liu and Xiaorong Wang. Between 2013 and 2017 Liu also earned many awards and prizes competing in Tennessee and Southern Division auditions of the Music Teachers National Association. He won top prizes in the Lee University International Solo Piano Competition in 2017 and the Tennessee Tech University Young Artist Competition in 2016. He has played violin in the ETSU Pre-College Chamber Orchestra and was assistant concertmaster for the Tennessee All-East Orchestra in 2017. Also in 2017, Liu won third prize in the West Virginia University International Piano Competition, and in 2016 he attended the Killington Music Festival. He plans to attend Vanderbilt University to study economics, math, and piano performance.

Division I second place winner is James Root, alto saxophonist. He is a senior at Dobyns-Bennett High School, where he has been a member of the Wind Symphony for the past three years. He played in the All-East Red Band in 2017 and 2018 and in the All-East Blue Band in 2019. His parents are Jim and Lisa Root. Root studies saxophone with Tom Crawford. He will attend Georgia Tech where he plans to participate in the band program.



A Division I honorable mention was presented to Jacob (Jake) Surber. He is a senior at Holston High School. He is the son of Jon and Shai Surber and the voice student of Rachel Helton. He has sung with the Highlands Youth Ensemble since 2015 and has been a Barter Youth Academy student since 2012. Surber participated in the 2019 Virginia State Choir and the 2019 National Honor Choir of the American Choral Directors Association. He will attend Virginia Commonwealth University to study theatre and vocal performance.

Division II is for students in grades 10 through 12. First place went to Emma Weber. Weber studies voice with Ivy Blair. She is a home-schooled high school senior and is the daughter of Rob and Sara Weber.

Division II second place was a tie between Michael David Rees and Emil Tucker. Rees is a home schooler and the student of Ivy Blair. His parents are Timothy and Grace Rees. In 2015 Rees was a cast member of the musical “Into the Woods,” directed by Dishon and Deanna Smith. He earned second place in the 2018 National Association of Teachers of Singing high school men’s audition. He has earned superior ratings from 2017 to 2019 in the National Federation of Music Clubs Festivals. He was recognized for distinguished achievement in 2016 by the Appalachian Classical Music Association.

Tucker, a clarinetist, is a junior at Patrick Henry High School where she is the assistant drum major of the band. She also sings in the PHHS Chamber Choir and plays in the Emory & Henry College Gold Woodwind Ensemble. Since seventh grade, she has performed in top chairs of the All-County and All-District Bands, and in 2019 she played in the Virginia All-State Band. She has also performed with the ETSU and Virginia Tech Honor Bands. The daughter of Greg and Kathy Tucker, Tucker studies clarinet with Tom Crawford.

Alex Wagner received a Division II honorable mention. He is a junior at Sullivan South High School, where he is in the marching band and concert band. He competed in the 2019 Bristol Music Club scholarship auditions playing alto saxophone. His parents are Amanda and David Wagner, and he studies saxophone with Tom Crawford. In 2017-2018 Wagner was chosen as second chair in the All-State East Red Band.

Division III is for students in grades seven through nine. First place went to Katherine Ning, pianist. She is the daughter of Shunbin Ning and Ling Wang, She studies piano with Jerilyn Paolini. Ning is a previous second place and honorable mention winner of the Bristol Music Club scholarship auditions. She has earned superior ratings in the National Federation of Music Clubs Festival from 2012 to 2018. She also earned superior rating in the Appalachian Music Teachers auditions in 2018. Ning attends ninth grade at Science Hill High School, where she plays flute in the marching band.

Second place was awarded to Amy Shi, pianist, who is in the ninth grade at Tennessee High School. Her parents are Qiaoxia Shen and Zhongshou Shi. Shi studies piano with Connie Wurster. Previously she was an honorable mention winner in Division III of the 2018 Bristol Music Club scholarship auditions. She has participated in the National Federation of Music Clubs Festival on piano, earning superior in 2018. Shi also plays oboe and has been chosen as second chair in the All-State East Red Band in 2019 and in the East Tennessee Junior Clinics in 2017 and 2018. In 2019 she earned a superior rating at the Solo and Ensemble Festival on oboe.

Rachel Elizabeth Rees, vocalist, received an honorable mention. She is a ninth-grade home schooler and the daughter of Tim and Grace Rees. She is a voice student of Ivy Blair.

Division IV if for students in grades four-six. First place was awarded to Emerson (Emmy) Nannenga, pianist. She is in the fifth grade at Jefferson Elementary School in Kingsport and is the daughter of Stephanie and Michael Nannenga. Her piano instructor is Carol Stone.

Funds for the scholarships are raised each fall at the Bristol Music Club Scholarship Fundraiser. The 2019 event is held Nov. 16 at Central Presbyterian Church, Bristol Virginia. Tickets will be available through club members.






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