by Natalia Kirychuk, Student Public Relations Writer
More than 300 high school and college vocal students and teachers from across Ohio participated in the Ohio Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singers (OCNATS) auditions at Cedarville University October 26-27. The two-day event took place in the Dixon Ministry Center.
NATS was founded in 1944 and has become the largest professional association of teachers of singing in the world. It currently has almost 7,000 members in more than 30 countries. The Ohio chapter has a specific goal to provide educational resources and performance opportunities for members and their students. Fall auditions allow students to pursue individual performance goals and be supported by experienced artists.
The auditions are held in different regions each year, and Cedarville University hosted the OCNATS student auditions in both 2009 and 2012. Cedarville’s facilities can accommodate the large numbers of participants, so they were asked to host again.
“It is great to have voice students and teachers from all over the state come to our beautiful campus,” said Beth Porter, chair of the music and worship department. “Having them here gives us the opportunity to host them with excellence and with the love of Christ. It is an opportunity for our students to serve as student volunteers and hear some great singing from peers from other universities.”
On Friday night, Peggy Kriha Dye, a prominent opera singer, taught a master class on the current state of auditions and the opera business in the United States. Dye is the general and artistic director of Opera Columbus and has performed at the San Francisco Opera, Washington National Opera, The Royal Opera House of Versailles, Shanghai Opera House and many others. Musical America, a resource for artists and their managers, recently named Dye one of their 2018 Professionals of the Year as part of its Movers and Shapers special edition.
Students are offered a membership with OCNATS for $46 per year. This membership allows them access to master classes, workshops, conferences, employment opportunities, discounted tickets to events, scholarly publications and many other resources for teachers and singers.
“For me, this is an opportunity to work on Broadway-style songs and receive a ranking for my work,” said Antonio Muñoz, sophomore vocal performance major from Effingham, Illinois. “It’s been a fun and challenging experience preparing for this!”
Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 4,193 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 150 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. For more information about the University, visit www.cedarville.edu.