Nine Students Represent Tabor College in the Annual NATS Singing Competition

November 08, 2013

Categories: General News

Nine performers and four student accompanists traveled to Emporia State University Nov. 1-2 to compete in the annual National Association of Teachers of Singing. Two students advanced to finals and placed third in their category.

“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,” stated Dr. Brad Vogel, professor of choral music. “Also, they have the opportunity to hear many fine singers, and learn from that as well.”

In the preliminary round of NATS, each singer prepares three solos, which they sing for a panel of three judges. Each judge rates the performance on a scale of 70 to 100 and writes a critique of the performance for learning.

To advance to the second round, singers must have an average score of at least 90. In the semi-final round, one solo is performed, and the judges then choose five singers to advance to finals.

Jessica Coldwell, Robert Howell and Olivia Kliewer all advanced to the semi-finals of the competition. Howell and Kliewer then advanced to finals, and each placed third in their respective categories.

Singers included Coldwell, Howell, Kliewer, Michael Beye, Nicholas Ediger, Tyler Funk, Heather Loewen, Sara Sagner, Jenna Thayer and Faith Tonne.

Tabor is one of the only schools that utilizes student accompanists rather than full-time professional accompanists, which “speaks well for Dr. Litke and her piano students,” said Dr. Vogel.

Accompanists included Jared Janzen, Zach Neumann, Cora Ruhl and Megan Wiebe.

In the past six years Tabor has had three first-place winners, two second-place winners, two third-place winners and two fifth-place winners.