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Redwood Symphony and NDNU Concerto Competition Winners

Belmont, CA, November 8, 2007 — Two gifted NDNU music students won the annual Redwood Symphony and NDNU Concerto Competition, Nov. 3, allowing them to perform in a special concert next February with the renowned orchestra.

Nine students competed, including six vocalists and three pianists for two spots as soloists on the Redwood Symphony's 2008 season. Dedicated to the performance of ambitious, contemporary repertoire, as well as the great orchestral classics, the Redwood Symphony is an all-volunteer orchestra. The orchestra’s innovative programming and emphasis on education are why so many talented musicians from throughout the San Francisco Bay Area volunteer their time to play.

Linette Illastron-Vinluan, an NDNU piano major and master’s candidate in piano, won the piano concerto division playing the Liszt Concerto No. 2 in A major. She was accompanied by staff coach/accompanist, Clint Cancio. NDNU master’s student in music and vocal performance, Cole Grissom, won the vocal category singing arias from “The Ballad of Baby Doe,” “Billy Budd,” “Street Scene,” and “Susannah.” Cole was accompanied by staff coach/accompanist Jungmee Kim.

Performers were allotted 15 minutes to perform, each choosing their first piece, while the judges asked for additional selections or segments of concertos. Repertoire ranged from Mozart’s “Coronation” to selections from Adam Guettel's "The Light in the Piazza."

“The Notre Dame Concerto Competition is one of the most valuable experiences that the music students have while here at the University,” said classical musician and pianist, Daniel Glover, who teaches at NDNU.

“For the winner, it provides an opportunity to play a major work with a full symphony orchestra,” added Glover.  “But, even for those who do not win the competition, it still gives them the experience of preparing a concerto and performing it in front of an audience of their peers and friends in a setting that is non-threatening, and yet still approximates the pressures that are faced in the professional world.”

The judges were Eric Kujawsky - Conductor of Redwood Symphony, Dr. Kay Kleinerman - soprano, Dr. Teresa McCollough - pianist, and Louise Costigan-Kerns - pianist, vocal coach, and conductor.

For more information regarding the Redwood Symphony and NDNU’s Concerto Competition, call NDNU’s Department of Music and Vocal Arts at (650) 508-3429.