OTTAWA — The Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra Young Performers Concerto Competition was held Jan. 4 at Ottawa High School. Eight competed in the junior division and 16 in the senior division. The judges were David Commanday, Lynne Stukart and Tim Karth.
The winners will perform with the IVSO at two student concerts in Ottawa on Feb. 21 and on the March 1 IVSO series concert at Ottawa High School.
The winner was Joannah Cisneros, flute, Telemann, Suite in a minor, I. The daughter of Debbie and Paul Cisneros, she is an eighth grader at Holy Family School in Oglesby. She has studied flute with Sue Gillio since she was 9 years old. She is a member of the Illinois Valley Youth Symphony, Illinois Valley Flute Ensemble, Peru Municipal Band and has participated on the master class of Gerald Carey at the Annual Summer Flute Retreat in Peru. She has been selected for District 2 IMEA Junior Band for the past three years and was the recipient of the Outstanding Soloist for Band O Rama the past two years. Additionally, she has studied piano for the past 10 years with Anne Marie Olsen of Rockford Music Academy.
The runner-up was Rachel Haas, flute. Honorable mention went to Morgan Phillips, violin, and Jessica Znaniecki, flute.
The winner was Simon Tiffin, piano, Mozart, Concerto #20, d minor, I. The son of David and Ellen Tiffin of Ottawa, he is a junior at Ottawa Township High School. He has studied piano with Anne Badger from the age of 6 and was also the 2012 Junior IVSO Young Performers Competition Winner. In 2013, he attended the Indiana University Summer Piano Academy, a camp for young virtuoso pianists, where he studied with Emile Nauomoff, Andre Watts and others. He will attend the Merit School of Music in Chicago this fall to further his musical abilities. Additionally, he enjoys playing the organ and plays for two churches locally, he is a percussionist the OTHS band and is also the pianist for the Ottawa Jazz Band. He is a two-year wrestler at OTHS and enjoys participating in the school’s drama department. He was selected as the IVYSO concerto competition winner and will perform with the group in April.
The runner-up was Abigail Dominis, trombone. Honorable mention went to Adrienne Havelka, flute; Abigail Lin Smith, violin; Abigail Walker, flute; and Bethany Wohrley, flute.