Lawrence University Students Earns Seven Firsts at State Singing Competition

With her fourth consecutive state title, Alisa Jordheim was one of seven Lawrence University students who earned first-place honors at the 2005 Wisconsin chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competition held Nov. 4-5 at Viterbo College in La Crosse.

Lawrence students dominated the annual state competition, winning seven of 11 divisions with 21 students advancing to the finals.

Jordheim, a student in the voice studio of KrisAnne Weiss, ’97, was awarded first-place honors in the college sophomore women division. She won the college freshman women division last year and girls’ high school categories in 2003 and 2002.

Patrick Ireland, Appleton, earned his third NATS title, winning the men’s upper college musical theatre division, while Matthew Vitti, New Caanan, Conn., a 2003 NATS winner, won the senior men division. Ireland, a 2001 and 2003 NATS winner, and Vitti are both students of professor of music Ken Bozeman.

Other first-place Lawrence finishers included Lacey Benter, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in the freshman women division; Alex Tyink, Appleton, in the freshman men division; Andrew Lovato, Waukesha, in the sophomore men division; and Becca Young, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in the senior women division.

Tyink, Lovato, and Young are also students of Ken Bozeman, while Benter studies in the voice studio of Joanne Bozeman. First-place finishers were awarded $100 for their winning efforts.

A total of 39 Lawrence students and one student from the Lawrence Academy of Music participated in this year’s competition. In addition to the seven first-place winners, five students earned second-place honors: Emily Shankman (freshman women), Garth Neustadter (freshman men); Emily Fink (sophomore women); Scott Sandersfeld (senior men); and Brad Grimmer (men’s upper college music theatre).

The 2005 NATS competition featured 417 singers from colleges and high schools throughout Wisconsin. Depending upon the category, competitors are required to sing two, three or four classical pieces from different time periods with at least one selection sung in a foreign language.

Rob Engelhart, associate professor of music at Northern Michigan University, Susan Jones, vocal/opera/choral program coordinator at the University of Iowa and Larry Weller, professor of music at the University of Minnesota, served as guest judges for the competition.