Bass trombonist Kevin Truong and pianist Jeffrey Sweede will share the top prize after they tied for first place in the music department’s 2019 Concerto Competition.
Both winners will perform as featured soloists in a concert with the CPP Philharmonic Orchestra this year, and each was awarded a $600 orchestra scholarship for the 2019-2020 school year.
Truong will perform his competition-winning piece, Eric Ewazen’s “Concerto for Bass Trombone,” in the Fall 2019 orchestra concert on Tuesday, Nov. 5 at 8 p.m. in the Music Recital Hall. Sweede will perform his competition-winning piece, “Rhapsody in Blue” by George Gershwin, in the orchestra’s Spring 2020 concert.
The panel of judges for the competition is comprised of five members including orchestra director Janine Riveire, one orchestra student representative, at least one full-time and one part-time music faculty member, as well as a CPP alumnus. In assembling the panel, Riveire’s goal is to ensure an unbiased group, representing each orchestral instrument family.
This year, the student representative judge was percussionist Alex Barajas, who won the inaugural year of the competition with his performance of “Marimba Concerto #1” by Chin-Cheng Lin.
According to Riveire, the Concerto Competition was created to give music students the chance to perform as a soloist with a full, live orchestra while simultaneously giving the orchestra members more experience accompanying a soloist. This creates more opportunity for all musicians involved to further expand their repertoire.
Students preparing to enter the competition typically choose ambitious pieces to study in their private lessons and are often found diligently practicing in their free time, she said. As such, the competition not only encourages an even higher level of excellence in performance, but also strengthens the sense of collaboration that permeates the music department as a whole, she added.