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We invite you to join us for the next CFS Gathering on Friday, January 13th, when we celebrate young performers carrying forward our musical traditions. This year's edition of the annual Young Talent Showcase gets underway at 7:30 PM in the Great Aunt Stella Center, 926 Elizabeth Avenue, in the edge of downtown Charlotte. Front doors open at 7 PM. Accessible entry is available through the ground-floor door on the right side of the building.
Emcees for this concert will be two past recipients of the CFS Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship to the Swannanoa Gathering, CFS Board member Elene Clemens and CFS Junior Board member, Avery McGuirt.
We are pleased to shine a spotlight on our 2011 Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship winners, Jake Bartholomew and Davy Fee, who both attended the Swannanoa Gathering Guitar Week as scholarship recipients last summer.
Jake Bartholomew is a sixteen-year-old guitarist who has been playing for about three years. He attends Myers Park High School. Jake took classes in songwriting at the Swannanoa Gathering last summer and has been writing ever since. He also studies a lot of classical music and music theory with his guitar teacher, John Tosco. Jake will perform a solo, as well as a duet with Marie Larson Hasty. Doug and Therese Bartholomew are Jake's parents.
Davy Fee is fourteen years old and is a freshman at Rocky River High School. He has been playing guitar for four years and is mostly self-taught. Davy's biggest influence on the guitar is Django Reinhardt. He also enjoys playing his standup bass at various jam sessions around the Folk Society. Davy became a CFS Junior Board member last fall. When not playing the guitar, he likes to skateboard. Davy is the son of David and Tracy Fee.
Kate Aberman is a freshman at Myers Park High School. She has been taking fiddle lessons from Jon Singleton since 2009 and is learning tunes from a variety of traditions. Kate is also learning guitar from her brother Alex. She has performed as an actress on several stages. Kate's parents are Linda McDonald and Mickey Aberman.
Ethan Alexander, age twelve, is a seventh grader at Alexander Graham Middle School. He is a vocalist who spent four years with the St. Peter's Choir School. During his time with the choir, Ethan toured throughout the Midwest and Northeast, where he performed at multiple churches and other venues, often as a soloist. Ethan sang at the Blumenthal Arts Center as part of Opera Carolina's production of Turandot. He has also sung at the Carriage Club and Festival in the Park. He has studied vocal technique with Jane Edgren and is currently studying with Janice Williams. Ethan is also a pianist, currently studying with Emile Bracket and Randy Jones. He likes all types of music from Frank Sinatra to Queen. Ethan's parents are Elaine and Matt Alexander.
James Barkley is a returning Showcase performer. He is eleven years old and in the fifth grade at Park Road Montessori Elementary School. James has been taking guitar lessons from Jon Singleton for the past year. Prior to that, he studied fiddle with Jon for two years. He enjoys playing football and is involved with Boy Scouts. His favorite hobbies are reading, skiing, horseback riding, and rock climbing. His parents are Andrea and John Barkley.
Nora Duncan is aged thirteen and attends Trinity Episcopal School in Charlotte. She studied violin in the Suzuki Method with Andrea Moore for six years. In the fall of 2010, Nora began fiddle lessons with Jon Singleton. She also plays trumpet in her school's band and she enjoys "noodling" on piano and guitar. Nora attended the Swannanoa Gathering last summer and took classes with Brian Conway and Rose Flanagan during Celtic Week. She hopes to return again in 2012, should scheduling permit. Nora is the daughter of Thom and Nancy Duncan.
Marie Larson Hasty is a junior at Myers Park High School. She loves visual arts, singing, playing ukulele, surfing, and hanging out with friends. Her current favorite artists include the Avett Brothers, John Mayer, Sara Bareilles, Jack Johnson, Mat Kearney, and many more. She'd like to thank her family and friends for being awesome! As well as singing with Jake Bartholomew, Marie will perform a duet with her dad. Mark Larson and Cathy Hasty are Marie's parents.
This year's showcase marks the sixth year for The Lemonds Family Bluegrass Band. They have also performed on our Festival in the Park stage many times. Clint, age sixteen, is an award-winning banjo player who has been playing since 2005. Bill Rippey is his teacher. He also sings lead and backup vocals. Clint is a junior at Myers Park High School. Vance is thirteen and an eighth grader at Alexander Graham Middle School. He loves to travel and compete with his mandolin. Vance also studies with Bill Rippey. Sarah is twelve and a seventh grader at Alexander Graham Middle School. She has been playing since 2005 and studies under Glen Alexander. Parents Christi and Gerald round out the band on guitar and upright bass, respectively. Clint, Vance, and Sarah all began their studies with Jon Singleton, and Christi and Gerald describe Jon as "a wonderful teacher and great motivator, without whom the Lemonds Family Bluegrass Band would not be possible."
Joshua Gerrard makes his CFS debut in this season's Young Talent Showcase. He is thirteen years old and is in the eighth grade at Northwest School of the Arts, where he plays violin in the High School Orchestra. Joshua also plays viola for the Charlotte Symphony Junior Youth Orchestra. He has taken private Suzuki/classical violin lessons with Sarah Slechta for the past seven years and began fiddle lessons with Glen Alexander about six months ago. When he's not practicing or performing music or in a school play, he enjoys reading, gaming, martial arts, and playing with his dogs. Sheryl and David Gerrard are Joshua's parents.
The McGuirt Family has performed as The Whippersnappers in venues ranging from Gospel Shout to the Tosco Music Party; from the Singing Christmas Tree to the Flat Rock Festival. The band made its farewell appearance at our June 2010 Gathering, so we're delighted to have them taking part in this showcase. Emmy is fourteen and attends Mallard Creek High School with brother, Avery, and sister, Casey. She plays flute, violin, and upright bass. Casey turned sixteen in December. She studies classical violin with Nora Smilovici and plays in Mallard Creek High School's orchestra and the Charlotte Symphony Youth Orchestra. She also plays flute and mandolin.
Avery is eighteen, a high school senior, the 2006 Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship winner, and a CFS Junior Board member. He plays violin in Mallard Creek's orchestra and the Charlotte Symphony Youth Orchestra. As the result of winning a scholarship competition, Avery studied violin last summer at North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston Salem. Emmy and Casey will perform a duet together and Avery, on fiddle, will perform with his dad, on guitar. David and Patty McGuirt are the parents of Emmy, Casey, and Avery.
Siblings Glenn and Polly O'Neal perform as the Do Dogs. Polly is home-schooled and Glenn attends Grave Academy. They are both music students of Jon Singleton. Glenn is fourteen and has been playing fiddle for four-and-one-half years. Polly is nine years old and has been playing mandolin for two years. She enjoys singing, as well. Glenn and Polly enjoy a variety of music, from folk to contemporary Christian, from pop to classical. Glenn especially enjoys Toby Mac. This is the third year they've taken part in our Young Talent Showcase. In 2011, Glenn and Polly performed in the MerleFest Youth Showcase and on the CFS Stage at Festival in the Park. Their parents are Claire and Skip O'Neal.
Fifteen-year-old Lando Pieroni was born in Florence, Italy, and has just recently moved to Charlotte. He is a sophomore in the International Baccalaureate program at Myers Park High School. He has studied classical guitar for four years and has won numerous musical competitions in Italy. Lando is an avid basketball player and volunteers at Presbyterian Hospital. He is the son of Carol Wilson and Carlo Pieroni.
Returning Showcase performer Sam Richardson has been playing the violin since kindergarten. He also plays mandolin and upright bass, on occasion, and he enjoys bluegrass and country music. Sam's fiddle teacher is Glen Alexander. He is thirteen years old and attends Alexander Graham Middle School, where he plays trumpet in the school and pep bands. Laurie and Dillard Richardson are Sam's parents.
This year marks the fourth appearance of Ruth Shumway in the CFS Young Talent Showcase. She started Suzuki violin lessons at age three and currently studies with both Ellyn Stuart of Music 4 Life and Jon Singleton at The Violin Shoppe. Ruth also works with Jamie Laval when he offers lessons in Charlotte. Throughout the year, Ruth performs and competes at regional festivals, retirement centers, and farmers' markets. Now in the third grade at Charlotte Latin School, Ruth enjoys a variety of activities, including soccer, swimming, and having fun with her friends. Ruth will be nine years old on January 16, 2012.
Ryan Tutwiler has been playing the hammered dulcimer for about two-and-one-half years. He takes lessons with Carol Raedy. Last summer he attended Dulcimer Week at the Swannanoa Gathering and had a great time improving his technique and jamming with this teachers and classmates. Ryan is fourteen and attends South Meck High School, where he plays both B-flat clarinet and bass clarinet in the Symphonic Band. This fall he started experimenting with the mountain dulcimer, as well, thanks to the generosity of a family friend. He is active in the handbell choir of Sharon Presbyterian Church and loves all things percussion. He enjoys attending the Charlotte Folk Society monthly Gatherings and participates in the slow jams and appreciates the continued support of his family. Ryan's parents are John and Heather Tutwiler.
Isabelle Young, our 2009 Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship recipient, has performed many times on CFS Stages - both in Youth Showcases and at Festival in the Park. Isabelle, the daughter of Ellie and Rick Young, is a sixteen-year-old Celtic fiddler who attends Union County Early College. She hopes to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston to pursue a career in music education. Isabelle shares, "Music is a passion of mine and I plan on spreading that passion to others." Isabelle performs with both the Union Symphony Youth Orchestra and the Ceilidh string ensemble. She is now teaching beginner violin lessons and performing in many venues.
This past year Isabelle performed with the Singing Christmas Tree for their annual event at Ovens Auditorium. She also enjoys caring for her llamas when she isn't playing. Isabelle is a CFS Junior Board member. For this year's showcase, Isabelle is performing with her group, The Ceilidh Players. Adam Sullivan is on cello. He is a student at Rock Hill High School. He likes playing Metallica on cello, but has recently converted to Celtic music. Bryan Gobey is on bass. He is a CPCC student and can play almost every instrument in the brass/horn group. His major instrument is tuba. Both Bryan and Adam play with the Union Symphony Youth Orchestra.
We are most appreciative of all the parents who support their children's interest in music and the teachers who develop that interest. Please come out and help us encourage these young musicians with your presence!
CFS Gatherings are made possible, in part, with funding from the Arts & Science Council and the North Carolina Arts Council, an agency of the Department of Cultural Resources, and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.