Four Student Musicians Share Top Honors in State Competition

Four Lawrence University student musicians earned first-place honors at the 18th annual Neale-Silva Young Artists competition held March 24 in Madison.

Sam Golter ’13

Senior Sam Golter, a flutist from Springfield, Va., was named one of six Neale-Silva winners for the second straight year.

Trevor Litsey, tuba, a junior from Birmingham, Ala., and the saxophone-marimba duo of sophomore Joe Connor and junior Gregory Riss, both from Oregon, Wis., shared top honors with pianist Garrick Olsen, a student at Waukesha’s eAchieve Academy virtual school and UW-Madison cellist Alison Rowe in the state competition sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio. Each musician received $400 for their winning performances.

Trevor Litsey ’14

This was the eighth consecutive year and 13th time in the past 15 years that Lawrence students have won or shared top honors in the Neale-Silva event.

The competition is open to instrumentalists and vocal performers 17-26 years of age who are either from Wisconsin or attend a Wisconsin college. Lawrence musicians accounted for seven of the competition’s 15 finalists. Also representing Lawrence in the finals were Kinsey Fournier, clarinet; Laetitia Lehman-Pearsall, piano; Daniel Reifsteck, marimba; and Tess Vogel, piano.

Joe Connor ’15 (l.) and Gregory Riss 14

Golter, Litsey, Connor and Riss will reprise their winning performances Sunday, April 7 at 12:30 p.m. in Madison’s Chazen Museum of Art. The concert will be broadcast live statewide on WPR’s Classical Music Network.

The Neale-Silva Young Artists’ Competition was established to recognize young Wisconsin performers of classical music who demonstrate an exceptionally high level of artistry.  It is supported by a grant from the estate of the late University of Wisconsin Madison professor Eduardo Neale-Silva, a classical music enthusiast who was born in Talca, Chile and came to the United States in 1925.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.