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Area piano students receive top honors at MMTA State Competition


Samuel Buckner, Nadia Parker, and Benjamin Parker received top honors at the MMTA State Competition held Nov. 5 at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Submitted photo

Several area piano students competed at the Missouri Music Teachers Association’s (MMTA) StatePiano Competition held Nov. 5 at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Students first qualify to compete by performing at their district audition in September. Qualifying performers for state compete against other students of their grade level by performing two memorized classical pieces.

All students are given a rating, with 1 being the highest. Judges then choose a winner and runner-up of each grade level from the students who received a 1. At their discretion, judges may also choose one or two honorable mentions to indicate a third-place finish. Three students from the Arcadian Academy of Music in Ironton qualified to compete at the state level.

Benjamin Parker of Ironton competed in the fifth-grade Piano Solos competition. He performed “Knight Rupert” by Robert Schumann and “Satellites” by Kevin Olson, receiving a 1 rating.

Nadia Parker of Ironton played in the ninth grade Piano Solos competition. She performed “Sonata in G Major, Movement 1” by Franz Joseph Haydn. She also played “Reflets dan l’eau” by Claude Debussy, receiving a 2 rating.

Samuel Buckner of Black also competed in the ninth grade Piano Solos competition. The ninth-grade level was especially difficult, with 28 competitors. Samuel performed “Intermezzo Op. 117, No. 1” by Johannes Brahms along with “Maple Leaf Rag” by Scott Joplin. Samuel was awarded a 1+ rating and given an honorable mention.

In addition, Nadia Parker and Samuel Buckner performed in the Piano Duets Competition. Together, they played “En Bateau” by Claude Debussy and “Hungarian Dance” by Johannes Brahms. They received a 1 rating and were awarded an honorable mention.

Students began preparing for this competition in February. They will next appear at the Dec. 17 Arcadian Academy of Music’s Winter Recital. All of the students are taught by Emily Parker.

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