SPARTANBURG — On Saturday, March 24, Converse College hosted the STAR Celebration Auditions for music students in the Spartanburg and Union area. It was held at the Lawson Academy of the Arts at Converse College.
STAR is an abbreviation for Student Talent and Recognition. Music students prepare two memorized pieces and play them in a private audition. They receive positive comments and tips on how to improve, a rating of from one to five stars and the opportunity to earn gold cups every three, six, nine and twelve years they participate.
Students may enter a variety of categories such as memorized solos, hymn playing, written theory test, and duet and trio playing. Instrumentalists and singers of all ages are encouraged to participate.
The piano students of Suzy Smith who participated this year are Vivian Bruce, Benton Ivey, Sara Grace Haney, Mary Ashton Garrett, Ross Dochterman, Garrett Ponder, Melle Ponder, Hannah Copeland, Katie Wagner, Erin Miller, Cameron Srivastava, Anna Jones, Katherine Jones, Angelique Farmer, Ansleigh Estes, Carson Jolly, Carmen Sliwa, Christian Crank, Thomazia Littlejohn, Greta Fulmer, Molly Bryant, Abby Scruggs, Joshua Goodwin, Claire Lloyd Remoll, Brooke Dimery, Leah Chandler, Annaka Lyda, Amya Beacham, Deontae Beacham, Cabry Fleming, Beckett Ferguson, Mirabelle Ferguson, Felicity Ferguson and Claire Wilson.
Four of these piano students were selected as best performers in their categories. Mirabelle Ferguson, Angelique Farmer and Annaka Lyda were seleceted as best performers in the piano solos categories. Claire Lloyd Remoll and Annaka Lyda were selected as best performers in duet playing. Additionally, Annaka Lyda was selected as a best performer in the hymn playing category. Students who win this best performer award are invited to participate in an honors recital at Converse College. This special event recital was held on Saturday, May 31.
Two of these students, Abby Scruggs and Mary Ashton Garrett were selected as best performers in the vocal category. Abby was a best performer in the American Arts vocal category and Mary Ashton Garrett was selected as a best performer in the Musical Theatre vocal category.
On April 13, Mary Ashton Garrett also participated in the Vocal Scholarship Auditions at Converse College’s Lawson Academy of the Arts. She was selected as a winner of a vocal scholarship which will apply toward her 2018-2019 voice lessons at the Lawson Academy of the Arts.