Congratulations, Brown Competition winners!

Sarah Pankratz and Clayton Stine

Heritage Fund announces Columbus North High School seniors Clayton Stine and Sarah Pankratz as the first-place winners in the recent 2017 Brown Music Competition.

Stine, playing the alto saxophone, placed first in the Betty F. Brown Awards for Instrumental Excellence, performing “Concerto, Movement 1" by Dubois. Pankratz, a mezzo, received first place in the Anna Newell Brown Awards for Vocal Excellence, singing “Who Reads by Starlight” by Laudisen and “Mon Coeur s’ouvre a ta voix” by Saint-Saens. Both students will receive a college scholarship in the amount of $3,500.

Also in the senior instrumental competition, Richard Liu and Samuel Heichelbech received second-place awards of $1,250. Liu, playing piano, performed “Jardins sous la pluie” by Debussy. Heichelbech performed “Premiere Rhapsodie” also by Debussy on clarinet. Hannah Walker received third-place honors and an award of $1,000 for her performance of “La Plus Que Lente” by Debussy on piano.

In the senior vocal competition, Heichelbech, a baritone, received second-place honors and an award of $1,500, performing “Thou Art Gone Up on High” by Handel and “Still Wie Die Nacht” by Bohm. Brittany Davis and Samuele Beggs received third-place awards of $1,000. Davis, a mezzo, performed “I Can’t Be Talkin’ of Love” by Duke and “Erlkonig” by Schubert. Beggs, a tenor, performed “Che Fiero Costume” by Legrenzi and “Linden Lea” by Vaughan Williams.

Fourteen seniors competed in the instrumental competition and four seniors participated in the vocal competition.

In the sophomore and junior competitions, 20 instrumentalists and 14 vocalists competed for scholarships for music lessons or music camps.

Underclassmen winners:

Instrumentalists: Alex Farrar, Eli Heichelbech, Yijiang Zhao and Amanda Wissmann, each receiving $750 awards.

Vocalists: Joseph Robinson, Emily Sipes and Tristan Grider each receiving $600 awards; and Erin Erickson, Ciaran Hill and Pavithra Venkataraman, each receiving $400 awards.

Also of special note this year, The Columbus Indiana Philharmonic made its newly handcrafted Shigeru Kawai EX Concert Series Grand Piano, gifted by Enkei America Inc., available to us for the competition. The grand piano is the largest of the series in which fewer than 20 are crafted each year, and our student pianists shared how much they enjoyed the opportunity to play the instrument.

The Betty F. Brown Awards for Instrumental Excellence was established by Mr. Brown in 1992 in memory of his wife, Betty. Mrs. Brown was a well-known and highly respected advocate and patron of the arts, both locally and statewide.

The Anna Newell Brown Awards for Vocal Excellence were established through the Heritage Fund in 1985 by Robert and Betty Brown to honor Mr. Brown’s mother, Anna Newell Brown. She was a distinguished vocalist and contributed greatly to the cultural life of the Bartholomew County Community.

Robert N. Brown was the longtime chairman of Home News Enterprises, The Republic’s parent company. He also served as chairman of the Heritage Fund Board from 1980 to 1983, during which the foundation awarded its first grant — a $500 award for the Art in Public Places Program.

Catching up with our winners

Clayton Stine, Instrumental

How long have you been competing in the Brown?

This is my third year. I love performing in front of an audience and sharing my musical interpretation of the piece I have prepared. Every year I’ve become more comfortable with performing in front of an audience, and the Brown Competition has helped immensely! I’ve had great experiences with my accompanist, Dianne Sprunger, who brings her own musical expertise to the piece.

Why did you choose this piece?

My piece this year, “Concerto for Alto Saxophone” by Pierre Max Dubois, made it easier for me to show my passion for the saxophone because the piece contains technical and musical complexity. I chose this piece because it really inspired me when I first heard it, and I knew I would love performing it.

Sarah Pankratz, Vocal

Why do you enjoy performing?

Trying to describe why I love performing is like trying to describe why I like a certain food, or why I like breathing oxygen. It is such an obscure sensation: to perform. There are times when I feel that I could not survive without it! The sense of accomplishment after a strong performance is incredibly rewarding, but it does not compare to the rush of adrenaline and pure joy of being on stage, sharing a piece of myself with whomever may be listening.

Why should students compete in the Brown?

The Brown is a remarkable way for young people in our community to appreciate their craft while also supporting their college fund. Brown truly sets our community apart, and I am so grateful for the opportunity it has presented me with!

Thanks for reading this article from Heritage Fund — The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County. To find out more about us, please visit our website at www.heritagefundbc.org

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