Once again, UNC School of the Arts students brought home top prizes from the Rosen-Schaffel Competition for Young and Emerging Artists at An Appalachian Summer Festival in Boone.

The festival, which includes classical music, pops, dance and theater performances, will continue through Aug. 3 at venues throughout the Appalachian University campus.

A concert by the Eastern Music Festival Orchestra at 7 p.m. today will feature a performance by last year’s student winner, Morgan Short, and renowned pianist Awadagin Pratt at the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts.

Music students and alumni from UNCSA took first, second and third places and won the Audience Choice Award at the Rosen-Schaffel Competition earlier this month.

Andrew René, a baritone from Beaumont, Texas, won first prize; Andrew Hasher, saxophonist from Old Bethpage, N.Y., won second; and Lucia Kobza a violinist and violist from Bern, Switzerland, won third prize and the Audience Choice award. The winners competed in a field of six finalists.Two other UNCSA students advanced to the final round.

“It was another banner year for UNCSA School of Music students at the Rosen-Schaffel Competition,” said Brian Cole, Dean of the School of Music. Cole was named interim chancellor of UNCSA on Wednesday.

“We are thrilled to have swept all prizes this year, representing the deep talent that exists in this school. I’m so proud of all five UNCSA students who performed brilliantly in the final round. This is just another example of how our students are excelling in so many areas.”

René is pursuing a master’s degree in music at the A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute at UNCSA where he studies with Marilyn Taylor. He performed a selection of songs and arias for orchestra by Massenet, Bernstein, Mahler and Handel.

Hasher holds a bachelor’s degree in saxophone performance from UNCSA and is pursuing a master’s degree at the University of Michigan. He performed the Concerto for Saxophone and Orchestra by Henri Tomasi.

Kobza studied with Ida Bieler at UNCSA and holds a master’s degree and Professional Artist Certificate. Kobza is currently pursuing her doctorate at Stony Brook University in New York. She performed the Concerto for Violin and Orchestra by Jean Sibelius.

Also competing from UNCSA were Wagner Mauricio Pástor Pazmiño, tenor, an A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute fellow studying with Taylor; and Peter Smith, piano, a rising fourth-year undergraduate student, and graduate of UNCSA’s high school music program, studying under Dmitri Shteinberg. Both advanced to the final round of competition.

UNCSA School of Music students and alumni have won the competition for eight of its nine years. Seventeen UNCSA students and alumni have placed in the competition held annually since 2011. The competition is open to students from North Carolina colleges and universities who are rising sophomores and above, as well as graduate students, or recent alumni under the age of 30.

First-place winners receive a cash prize of $2,000 as well as an invitation to perform a complete concerto with an orchestra during the festival season following the competition. Second-place winners receive a cash prize of $1,500; third-place winners receive a cash prize of $1,000; and the Audience Choice Award winner receives a cash prize of $1,000.

This year’s competition jurors are José-Louis Novo with the Eastern Festival Orchestra and the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, Roger Kalia with the Pacific Symphony and Orchestra Santa Monica, and Robert Moody with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and former music director of the Winston-Salem Symphony.

Can’t resist this

The Temptations: Concert and Dance Party will close out the festival at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 3 at the Holmes Convocation Center.

The Temptations have had 44 Billboard Top 10 hits including “My Girl,” “Ain’t Too Proud,” “Papa Was a Rolling Stone” and “I Can’t Get Next to You.”

The group includes original member Otis Williams, with singers Ron Tyson, Terry Weeks, Larry Braggs and Willie Greene Jr.

The Temptations were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989, into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1999, and into the Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame in 2013, the same year they were honored with the Recording Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award. Winner of four Grammy Awards, they received Motown’s first-ever Grammy in 1969 for “Cloud Nine.” A two-part, scripted miniseries on the group, broadcast by NBC in 1998, won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries or Movie.

The recently Tony-nominated new musical “Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of The Temptations” features the nostalgic hits, harmonies and signature dance moves that have made The Temptations part of our cultural history, and explores their extraordinary journey from the streets of Detroit to Motown fame to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

In the meantime

Here are some highlights between now and Aug. 3.

Popular series

  • Chris Botti: July 19, Schaefer Center, 8 p.m.
  • Lily Tomlin: July 20, Schaefer Center, 8 p.m.
  • Punch Brothers: Aug. 1, Schaefer Center, 8 p.m.

Classical Music

  • Tapas and Tesla: An Evening of Chamber Music, July 18, Mark E. Ricks Athletics Complex, 7 p.m. (See Best Bets on page D6 for details.)


  • Broadway’s Next Hit Musical: July 25 and 26, Valborg Theatre, 8 p.m.


  • Weicholz Global Film Series: July 17, 24, 31 and Aug. 2, Schaefer Center, 7 p.m.
  • Young People’s Global Film Series: July 16, 6 p.m.; July 9, 23, 30, Schaefer Center, 1 p.m.

Visual Arts

  • Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Walk: July 27, Schaefer Center, 10 a.m.
  • Lunch & Learn Series: at the Turchin Center, July 17, 24, 31, Turchin Center, noon.
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lfelder@wsjournal.com (336) 727-7298 @LynnFelder

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