SAT MARCH 23 AT 9 PM ON MILWAUKEE PUBLIC TELEVISION
SUN MARCH 24 AT 3 PM ON WISCONSIN PUBLIC TELEVISION
Pianist Christopher Eom and harpist Chloe Tula took top honors at our 2013 competition, and we wish to thank them and violinist C. Andrew Dunlap and oboe player Lauren McNeel for their incredible playing and their courage and dedication. John DeMain and the Madison Symphony Orchestra, the folks at Wisconsin Public Television and Wisconsin Public Radio, and the thousands of people who tuned in or will tune in, wish you all the best in your future endeavors!
Young artists from the entire state of Wisconsin compete in two preliminary rounds for a chance to perform with John DeMain and the MSO before a live audience in Wisconsin Young Artists Compete: The Final Forte. Here, the final four contestants each perform a movement from a concerto while judges decide who will win scholarships and a chance to perform for their peers at the Spring Young People's Concerts.
THE FREE CONCERT & LIVE BROADCASTS
Wisconsin Young Artists Compete: The Final Forte is a tremendously popular FREE concert in which John DeMain conducts the MSO as Wisconsin Public Television cameras and Wisconsin Public Radio microphones broadcast the proceedings live throughout the state. These broadcasts have captured an enormous following and numerous honors, including an Emmy nomination. The 90-minute program includes performances, profiles and an interview with John DeMain.
See a brief feature about Andrew in his local newspaper here. C. Andrew Dunlap, currently a senior at Lincoln High School in Manitowoc, is a member of the Manitowoc Symphony Orchestra, where he will solo in a regular subscription concert this season. He started studying violin when he was four and his teachers include Carrie Kulas and Dr. Samantha George. He has participated for several years with both the Wisconsin Middle Level and High School Honors Orchestras. His honors and awards include a 2011 exemplary soloist award at the Wisconsin School Music Association’s State Solo and Ensemble Festival, first place in the Green Bay Youth Philharmonic Concerto Competition, and honorable mention awards at the Milwaukee Youth Orchestra Concerto Competition and Milwaukee Symphony Young Artist Auditions in 2012. In addition to his interest in music, Andrew enjoys soccer, T’ai Chi and chess.
Christopher Eom is a senior at Middleton High School. He has been playing piano for 12 years and is currently studying with Professor Christopher Taylor of the UW-Madison School of Music. He won the Madison Symphony Orchestra’s Fall Youth Concerto Competition and performed in Overture Hall in 2007. He also won the 2010 Wisconsin Symphony Youth Orchestra Concerto Competition and the Middleton High School Concerto Competition in 2011. He always appreciates the opportunity to make music with others, and he plays clarinet at WYSO rehearsals on Saturdays. Recently, Christopher had the opportunity to work with pianist Gabriella Montero, while she was in Madison performing with the MSO. Besides music, he likes skiing, playing tennis and running.
Lauren McNeel, currently a junior at Madison West High School, has been playing the oboe since sixth grade and currently studies with the MSO’s Jennifer Morgan. She started her musical path with the piano at the age of five, and she also studies the viola with the MSO’s Diedre Buckley. She has been in the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras for five years, touring Europe last summer with them as a violist and currently serving as the first chair violist in Youth. She also served as first chair oboist in Wisconsin’s High School State Honors Orchestra last summer. She recently became a finalist in WYSO’s 2013 Concerto Competition. When she isn’t playing music, Lauren enjoys competitive Irish dancing and is involved in high school tennis and forensics. She loves wildlife and also takes an interest in Irish music and culture.
Chloé Tula, currently a senior at Kettle Moraine Global Charter School, began studying harp when she was ten with Geraldine Elliott of Waukesha; she also takes regular lessons with Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra principal harpist, Danis Kelly. She also studies classical piano with Shanti Daya at Carroll University. She joined the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra in 2009 and is the principal harpist for MYSO’s Senior Symphony and Chamber Orchestra ensembles. Among her numerous awards and honors for harp are 2009 and 2011 Wisconsin Philharmonic’s Shining Star scholarships, a 2011 win at the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s Stars of Tomorrow Concerto Competition, and upcoming performances with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. Cholé also enjoys studying Mandarin Chinese, cooking, and serving as an editor for the Kettle Moraine High School newspaper.
HISTORIC COLLABORATION WINS AWARDS
The unique collaboration among the Madison Symphony Orchestra, Wisconsin Public Radio and Wisconsin Public Television is producing award-winning programming! In addition to an Emmy Award nomination, the Final Forte earned First Place in the "Special Interest" category from the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association in 2007 and was rated the fifth most-watched program in the Feb 2007 Nielsen ratings (the television audience was 63 percent greater than WPT's average audience in the Madison market). The 2008 broadcasts on WPR and WPT reached more than 60,000 viewers in the Madison market alone and there were an estimated 200,000 statewide viewers and listeners for the 2009 broadcasts.
JOHN DEMAIN'S TAKE
"This has been a very auspicious partnership. The quality of the broadcasts and the performances of the finalists are simply spectacular. I think this sends a magnificent message to our community and to the entire state of Wisconsin about the importance and effectiveness of our music education programs. It is an extraordinary opportunity for everyone to feel the commitment and energy of these young performers and to reflect on the central role the arts play in our lives. I look forward to these events with great joy."