McKendree University Hosts First-Ever Classical Solo Vocal Competition for Local High School Singers

Vocal Competition Winners(LEBANON, Ill., April 21, 2022) – Eleven high school singers from across Southern Illinois and the St. Louis metro region participated in McKendree University’s first Classical Solo Vocal Competition on Saturday, April 9 in Bothwell Chapel. Participants sang two classical solo pieces and were adjudicated by Christine Brewer, distinguished McKendree alumna and Grammy Award-winning soprano; Amy Prince, instructor of applied voice at McKendree; and Dr. John McDonald, assistant professor of music education and director of choirs at McKendree.

The winners of this year’s Classical Solo Vocal Competition are as follows:

  • First place: Arielle Pedersen, Valley Park High School, Valley Park, Mo.

  • Second place: Callie Barks, Father McGivney Catholic High School, Glen Carbon, Ill.

  • Third place: Olivia Knopf, Triad High School, Troy, Ill.

  • Honorable mention: Lars Gindler, Metro East Lutheran High School, Edwardsville, Ill.

The top three singers by score and one honorable mention participated in a master class with Brewer and Prince that afternoon. The top three students performed on a recital joined by Brewer, Prince and McKendree voice students Elizabeth Coady, Laura Dismer and Samantha Elling. McKendree staff collaborative pianist, Jessica Anderson, accompanied the competition, masterclass and recital.