Nine singers and four student accompanists from Tabor College traveled to Emporia State Uni?ver?sity Nov. 1-2 to compete in the annual National Associ?a?tion of Teachers of Singing. Two students advanced to the finals and placed third in their respective categories.
Jessica Coldwell, Robert Howell and Olivia Kliewer advanced to the semifinals of the competition. Howell and Kliewer were selected for the finals.
Also representing Tabor were singers Michael Beye, Nicholas Ediger, Tyler Funk, Heather Loewen, Sara Sag?ner, Jenna Thayer and Faith Tonne.
In the preliminary round, each singer prepared three solos to sing before a panel of three judges. Each judge rated the performance on a scale of 70 to 100 and wrote a critique.
To advance to the second round, singers needed an average score of at least 90. In the semifinal round, the singer performed one solo, and the judges then chose five singers to advance to finals.
?It is a tremendous learning experience for the students, having to learn and prepare the repertoire according to NATS guidelines, and then the feedback they receive from the panel of teacher-judges is very helpful,? said Brad Vogel, professor of choral music.
?Also, they have the opportunity to hear many fine singers, and learn from that as well.?
Accompanying the singers were Tabor students Jared Janzen, Zach Neu?mann, Cora Ruhl and Megan Wiebe.
Tabor is one of the only schools that uses student accompanists rather than full-time professional accompanists, which ?speaks well for (professor of piano and piano pedagogy Shiela) Litke and her piano students,? Vogel said.
Over the past six years, Tabor has had three singers place first, two place second, two place third and two place fifth.