The group of applicants to our Student Composer Fellowship was so overwhelmingly talented that 91Classical has decided to award four fellowships instead of the two previously planned.
“If the applications to 91Classical’s Student Composer Fellowship are a portrait of the next generation of classical musicians, then the art form will be alive and well for a long time to come,” said Steve Swenson, CEO of Nashville Public Radio.
Meet the Fellows:
Instrumental music fellow Nika Duncan began her piano studies at Nashville’s School of Rock. In seventh grade, she joined her school orchestra on the violin and fell in love with classical music. The Centennial High School freshman has combined her experimentation with classical writing along with work in Garage Band software. She has her aim on a career in soundtracks.
Vocal music fellow Anna Guelcher has been playing the piano since she was 5, and she started playing oboe in the third grade. The high school junior was the first-chair oboist in the Tennessee All-State band in 2019. Anna also sings with Nashville Notes and has participated in the Tennessee All-State honor choir. Anna has written more than 10 pieces of instrumental music.
Vocal music fellow Isaac Herrenbruck is a pianist, trombonist and choral singer. The high school senior has enjoyed composing brass chamber music to perform for friends, as well as jazz and funk arrangements for his jazz band. He has also arranged a hymn for his church choir. Isaac also sings with Nashville Notes and is in his second-year teaching music theory for the program.
Instrumental music fellow Kevin Ou has been playing the piano since third grade, and the Hume Fogg High School freshman picked up the violin in middle-school orchestra. He began writing solo pieces and in seventh grade began composing a piece for his school orchestra titled “Wintertime Fantasia,” which premiered during his eighth-grade orchestra’s winter concert.
These four fellows will study composition throughout the school year with their mentors, Cristina Spinei (instrumental music) and Dave Ragland (vocal music). They will have opportunities to meet composers visiting Nashville and to observe professional musical ensembles in action. In June 2020, they will each premiere a piece in a live broadcast on 91Classical’s show Live In Studio C.
To contribute financially to this educational opportunity, click here.