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UVU’S Rebecca Marriott Champion Piano Competition Held March 23

26 March 2013 No Comment

March 26, 2013

For Immediate Release

University Marketing & Communications: Mike Rigert

Written by: Traci Hainsworth (801) 863-6739

Some the state’s most talented child and teen pianists joined Utah Valley University’s top student pianists on March 23 at the third annual UVU Rebecca Marriott Champion Piano Competition.

UVU music students competed for a $5,000 scholarship, while elementary and high school students vied for cash awards, and one talented high school senior earned a one-year full-ride tuition scholarship to UVU. This is the second year that the competition has involved non-college students.

“A piano festival or competition that includes students of all ages is motivational for those who are younger and instructive for those who are older,” said Newell Dayley, dean of UVU’s School of the Arts. “It enables all of those involved to more easily recognize the process of development and the importance of patience, diligence, consistency and a clear vision of how to succeed.”

Marriott Champion, a member of Utah Valley University’s Board of Trustees, endowed the scholarship and competition last year to stimulate and reward excellence in piano performance. She believes those who are willing to concentrate their efforts toward high accomplishment in the arts also prepare to be responsible and resourceful citizens, and they are more able to influence and increase the artistic sensitivity of society in general.

Marriott Champion also wants to recognize the growing excellence of UVU’s music department. Her grandmother taught her that music “broadens your horizons and makes you a more well-rounded person” — insight which has instilled Marriott Champion with a lifetime love for music and a belief that fine arts have a permanent place in higher education.

“This is a showcase of Utah Valley’s finest students, who strive to be the best they can be,” Dayley said. “These are students who are not afraid to learn from experience or grow from hard work.”

During an afternoon session, in 5-10 minute performances that ran from noon to 5 p.m., around 60 students from age 6 to 18 performed classical pieces, multiple works and unaccompanied concertos. Competition judges provided feedback and determined the winners of $150, $300 and $500 awards, and a full-tuition scholarship to the highest-ranking high school senior.

“In addition to the live competition, the gala also featured faculty performances and revealed the winners of the community competition,” said Hilary Demske, UVU’s director of piano studies.

(front row, from left) Juyoun Lee, winner in the University Division; Mariah Sam, winner in the Senior Division; John Zhao, winner in the Elementary Division; Junhao Wang, winner in the Junior Division
(back row, from left) UVU faculty member Hilary Demske, UVU President Matthew S. Holland, and Rebecca Marriott Champion.

Rebecca Marriott Champion Piano Competition Award Winners 2013

Elementary Division

1st place – John Zhao

2nd place – Mary-Frances Oldham

3rd place – Elizabeth Zhang

Honorable Mentions: Jet Qu and Cameron Turner


Junior Division

1st place – Junhao Wang

2nd place – Juncen Wang

3rd place – Alinda Heder

Honorable Mentions: Alyssa Buck, Danny Jones and Amy Yao


Senior Division (all three of these winners will be under consideration for the Rebecca Marriott Champion Young Artist Award, which is a full-tuition scholarship for an incoming UVU student)

1st place – Mariah Sam

2nd place – Anastasia Magamedova

3rd place – Tiffany Xu

Honorable Mentions: Laura Mosdell and Jacob Dame


University Division – Rebecca Marriott Champion Pianist Scholarship Award, $5,000

1st place – Juyoun Lee

2nd place – Brandon Riggs

3rd place – JiYeon Lee

Honorable Mentions: Whitney Lunceford and Echo Lei



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