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ASU Vocalists Claim Wins at National Competition

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Author: Hazel Scott

Release Date: Feb 28, 2018

Alabama State University students won awards in a national vocal competition.

Alabama State University’s "Singing Hornets” have done it again. Six vocal majors in the Department of Music were winners at the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competition at the University of South Alabama in Mobile.

A total of 14 ASU vocal students competed in the competition, with six advancing to the regional competition in March. At regionals, The Singing Hornets will compete with other top artists from around the country. Five singers from each regional category will advance to a national online screening round where entrants will submit a video of their performances for adjudication by a panel of national judges. Fourteen singers from each of the 14 categories (plus the Hall Johnson Spirituals Competition during conference years) will advance to the semifinal round where three singers from each category will be selected to compete in the final round.  The national semifinal and final rounds will be held in conjunction with the 2018 NATS National Conference - June 22-26 in Las Vegas.

The six ASU vocalists won in the Classical and Musical Theater categories at the two-day event.

Classical Edition Category:

First place - Kristi Sullen, soprano, Adult College Women

First place - Zabriel Rivers, countertenor, 3rd Year College Men

Fourth place - Matthew Chappell, tenor, 2nd Year College Men

Fourth place - Cheyenne Gibson, soprano, 1st Year College Women

Musical Theater Edition:

First place - Kourtney Ellis, mezzo-soprano, 4th Year College Women

First place - Jakia Gadson, mezzo-soprano, 2nd Year College Women

Also honored was Dionn Overton-Williams, soprano, who received a Recognition Award (Advanced Adult Women).

Other Singing Hornets participating were Zana Allen (soprano), Terrence Clark (tenor), Tyler Mitchell (baritone), Patrick Parker (tenor), Keith Turner (bass baritone), Justin Weems (tenor) and Troy Webster (tenor).

"We are so proud of our ‘Singing Hornets’ and we look forward to competing next year with more of our students," said Dr. Cordelia Anderson, assistant professor of voice.

ASU voice faculty members who teach and mentor the Singing Hornets are Dr. Cordelia Anderson and Tyrone Hayes. Piano faculty members Dr. Joel C. Jones and Dr. Kristofer Sanchack accompanied the students during the competition.

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