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Music Students Perform at Kennedy Center

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May 9, 2006 | by Judy Moore

Evanston, Ill. --- Five School of Music students -- bass Paul Corona, soprano Amanda Majeski, harpist Benjamin Melsky, flutist Courtney Morton and violist Yumi Sagiuchi -- recently performed in Washington, D.C. at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of the Conservatory Project for developing and presenting young talent.

The concert was broadcast live via the Internet. An archived version of this spring's concert can be viewed by visiting the Kennedy Center Web site at http://www.kennedy-center.org/programs/millennium/artist_detail.cfm?artist_id_NWUNIVMUSI and clicking the icon for the April 30 performance at the Terrace Theater.

The Conservatory Project is part of the Kennedy Center's “Performing Arts for Everyone” initiative, which provides free daily performances.

Twice a year, the nation's leading music schools are invited to send students to the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theatre to introduce top new talent to the public. Project participants have the opportunity to be critiqued by world-renowned musicians.

Corona, a senior who studies voice with Bruce Hall, was recently named a Grand Winner in the 2006 Metropolitan Opera National Council Competition and has been chosen to be an apprentice artist in the summer 2006 season at the Santa Fe Opera. He also is singing the lead role of Osmin in the Chicago Opera Theatre's spring production of Mozart's “The Abduction from the Seraglio” at the Harris Theater at Millennium Park in Chicago.

Corona sang “La calunnia è un venticello” from Rossini's “The Barber of Seville” and works from two musicals -- “This is the Life” from “Love Life” and “Some Enchanted Evening” from “South Pacific.”

Majeski, a senior, studies voice with Theresa Brancaccio. She sang Antonin Dvorak's “Song to the Moon,” Giacomo Puccini's “O mio babbino caro” and Victor Herbert's “Art is Calling Me.” The recipient of first-place awards from the National Association of Teachers of Singing and the Bel Canto Foundation of Rhode Island, Majeski will be a member of Opera Theatre of Saint Louis' Gerdine Young Artist program this spring covering the title role in Michael Berkeley's “Jane Eyre.”

Melsky, a sophomore who studies with Elizabeth Cifani, began harp studies at age 8 and was principal harpist of the Midwest Youth Symphony, the 2004 All-State Honors Symphony Orchestra, and the Evanston Township High School Symphony. He performed Gustavo Leone's “Five Preludes for Harp.”

Morton, a master's student, studies flute with Walfrid Kujala. While at Northwestern, she has played with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and will be a member of that ensemble in 2006-07. She also has been a finalist for the “President's Own Band.” Morton performed two movements from Carl Vine's “Sonata for Flute and Piano.”

Sagiuchi, a senior who studies with Roland Vamos, has served as principal violist of the University's Symphony Orchestra and the Childrens Orchestra Society. She also is a substitute violist for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Sagiuchi's numerous awards have included prizes in the Thaviu and Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Young Artists competitions, the Northwestern University Concerto Competition and a Music Academy of the West fellowship.

She performed Paganini's “La Campanella” at the Kennedy Center.

Pianist Kay Kim, an active collaborative pianist in the Chicago area and a faculty member of Northwestern's National High School Music Institute, accompanied Corona, Majeski, Morton and Sagiuchi.