Our 2021 high school and university-level competitions are in full swing this month, and again, committee members and adjudicators alike are saying how impressed they are with this year’s young participants. We look forward to sharing their musical gifts with you when the competitions conclude next month! While we await the results, we offer this latest installment of BMC Connects! This time, we have the stories of three amazing winners of recent years, to remind you of how these awards can help launch great things!
Mezzo-soprano, Rosamund Dyer, was our 2015 award winner of the Voice Competition in honor of Jack & Ginny Frymire. Since then, she has completed her degree at Oberlin Conservatory. With the pandemic restrictions last spring, her classes went online and her senior recital was cancelled, although she had a chance to sing the role of Dorabella in Mozart’s Così fan tutte, with her family in attendance. “A real privilege,” she expressed, that filled her with pride and gratitude.
When the time is right, Rosamund will head to Australia to intern with a small opera company in Brisbane, and pursue a Diploma of Event Management program emphasizing the business aspects of performing arts production, including planning, marketing, promotion and logistics. With characteristic optimism, she told us, “I look forward to singing again and sharing my vibrant passion for opera with audiences very soon.”
Winner of the Voice Competitions in 2017 and 2018, tenor Aaron McInnis caught the travel bug after his high school years, exploring North America and Europe, and enjoying singing opportunities along the way. He is now living in New Braunfels, Texas, and studying with Kristin Roach, a distinguished, Grammy-nominated pianist who has made her mark as vocal coach and conductor.
“It’s been a hot minute, but I’m excited to announce that I’ll be singing Ferrando in Lyric Opera Studio Weimar’s production of Così fan tutte in April and May of 2021,” says Aaron. He is thrilled to be heading to Germany while adding new international credits to his long list of achievements!
Aaron thanks Kristin Roach for her beautiful playing in this recording of one of Ferrando’s arias, “Ah lo veggio, quell’anima bella.” https://youtu.be/M2mCI6BSA-o And you can watch many more videos on Aaron’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC66A-91wixTFnO0SprKMrnQ/videos
After winning the BMC Instrumental Competition in honor of Nicholas Bussard, Chris Hayner enrolled at the University of Denver to study with bassoonist extraordinaire, Martin Kuuskmann. At the close of his first year, Chris decided that his primary interests were in engineering, astrophysics and aeronautics, and determined that the University of Washington would be his best preparation for those fields. So, he has moved back to the Northwest!
Chris tells us that “College is demanding and competitive, and COVID has thrown a wrench in essentially everything.” Some classes are online while lab work takes place on campus or in the field. This June, Chris will graduate with a Bachelor’s in Applied Physics; he will start a PhD focusing on Controls Engineering in the fall. He adds, “I want to design algorithms and systems to explore other planets.” Very soon, Chris may work on those vehicles that crisscross or fly over the Martian landscape!
From his year in Denver, he shares this recording of Kuuskmann’s bassoon studio playing Orfeu da Conceição (by Tom Jobim, arranged by Romeu Rabelo). “This is definitely one of my favorite performances since high school.” https://bellinghammusicclub.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/1-Track-12.mp3
Looking in on these three BMC award winners can make us proud, but more than that – it makes us aware that each young student we elevate through our competitions is a gift. A gift to our community, a gift to the field of music, and a gift to the future! Thank you for making this all possible through your support of the Bellingham Music Club.