Most of the performers, ages 3-18, were from the Vermillion/Yankton area, although there were also participants from Tea, Sioux Falls and Milbank. The following teachers had students performing this year: Judy Aiello, Sheila Dailie, Nick Curry, Lois Droegemeier, Marie Gray, Susan Keith Gray, Kimberly Jacobson, Christy Kimball, Karen Lipp, Beth Mitchell, John Thompson, Karen Wearne and Janis Yarbrough.
Each student performed two pieces of music from memory; one was a required selection and the other a piece the student and his teacher chose. The judge gave each performer a rating, along with a written critique. The judge for the string performers this year was Mr. Jay Reeve, a violinist and string teacher from Sioux Falls. Reeve plays in the South Dakota Symphony and is an adjunct instructor with Northwestern College in Orange City, IA. The piano students were judged by Ms. Christy Kimball, a piano teacher and organist from Yankton. The judges were both favorably impressed with the ability of the students and the quality of the performances.
The following students received a superior rating in the piano solo event: Adam Allgrunn, Julie Auch, Peter Auch, Katie Brockevelt, Ellen Brown, Jack Brown, Johanna Bryan, Maggie Busek, Meghan Cameron, Cory Cordie, Eric Droegemeier, DeNell Dykstra, Sam Hieb Ekstrom, Shantel French, Anna Hammond, Ellen Hanson, Marley Hanson, Abby Havener, Naomi Havener, Amanda Heesch, Allison Heine, Kevin Helenurm, Mark Helenurn, Emily Hill, Derek Iverson, Makenna Koble, Clayton Larsen, Reilly Larson, Sophia Leikvold, Catherine Leonard, Scott Leonard, Dana LeVan, Natalie LeVan, Aloknanda Manna Ray, James May, Audrey Miiller, Elly Miiller, Kayla Peterson, McKayla Poppens, Sowmya Ragothaman, Erin Rasmussen, Sarah Rasmussen, Ryan Reiffenberger, Emily Renner, Julie Renner, Paul Schwasinger, Kyle Schluttner, Ashley Schulz, Caitlyn Schwebach, Forest Skilbred, Chrissy Sorensen, Nicholas Stewart, Heather Sun, Britney Sweeney, Anneliese Taggart, Sophia Taggart, Alexa Thomson, Sean Thomson, Sam Tigert, Sydney Tigert, Emil Van Den Hul, Olivia Van Den Hul, Ann Van Holland, Abby Van Peursem, Joel Van Peursem, Michael Walker, Shinayne Whipple and Dylan Workman.
Excellent ratings for piano solos were given to Matthew Auch, Peter Banasiak, Dayjia Castillo, Shelby Covill, Heather Dean, Sarah Droegemeier, Jade Fostvedt, Andrew Heine, Sydney Kronaizl, Lacey Leichtnam, Raychel Lorenz, Kayla Munger, Ruth Murphy, Seth Phillips, Micah Rarick, Sarah Rosacker, Stacy Schluttner, Twila Sweeney and Cassie Waage.
The following students received a superior rating for violin solos: Julie Auch, Rebecka Bogue, Maggie Brown, Zofie Dvorak, Kate Ehresmann, Claire Hussey, Mikael Leet, Carmen Lipp, Claire Min, Annie Peasley, Janani Ragothaman, Brigita Rasmussen, Allen Schmitz, Sadie Stevens, Alexa Thomson, Sean Thomson, Sophia Van Den Hul and Jacki Wang.
Excellent ratings for violin solos were earned by David Barnes, Theresa Barnes, Sophie Kouri, Emily Schmitz and Leah Waid. In the violin concerto event, superior ratings were given to Julie Auch, Janani Ragothaman, Sadie Stevens, Alexa Thomson and Jackie Wang; Zofie Dvorak and Sean Thomson received an excellent rating.
Jessica Bogue, Rose Dvorak and Libby Sykes earned superior ratings for viola solos; Katie Brady and Addy Bryan each earned an excellent rating. Rose Dvorak received and excellent rating for her viola concerto. Benjamin Koening, Chance Sorensen and Owen Swallow received superior ratings for their cello solos.
In addition to receiving a rating and comments from the judge, participants can earn points every year based on the ratings they receive, and gold cups are then awarded to those earning the required number of points: 15 points for a small cup, 30 points for a medium cup and 45 points for a large cup. This year 24 gold cups were awarded.
Small gold cups for piano solos were earned by Maggie Busek, Meghan Cameron, Anna Hammond, Ellen Hansen, Allison Heine, Derek Iverson, Lacey Leichtnam, Sowmya Ragothaman, Paul Schwasinger, Forest Skilbred, Chrissy Sorensen and Sean Thomson. Ellen Brown, DeNell Dykstra and Sam Hieb were all awarded medium gold cups. Raychel Lorenz earned a large gold cup (45 points) and Sarah Rasmussen was awarded the extra-large gold cup (60 points ��12 years of superior ratings).
A small gold cup for violin solo was awarded to Maggie Brown; Julie Auch, Annie Peasley and Janani Ragothaman each received medium gold cups. Sadie Stevens and Alexa Thomson were awarded the large gold cups for violin solo. Jacki Wang received a medium gold cup in the violin concerto event.
Thanks to the members of the Vermillion Music Club, who worked to put on this festival (especially Beth Mitchell, Lois Droegemeier and Mary Sorensen, as well as Sarah Chadima and Carolyn Johnson) and to the teachers who encourage their students to participate. For further information about the Junior Music Festival or the Vermillion Music Club, contact Carolyn Johnson at 624-4233 or Sarah Chadima at 624-6745.