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Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition Education News

Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition

2021-2022 Virtual Event

A collaborative effort with Loyola University of New Orleans – College of Music and Fine Arts and Preparatory Program, Newcomb Department of Music, Tulane University, and the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts.

Any Louisiana high school Sophomore, Junior, or Senior vocalist in the academic year of 2021-2022 may apply.

Guidelines and Application:

Click here to download the Guidelines.

Click here to fill out the Application.

Please note, the deadline to participate is midnight, Monday, OCTOBER 4, 2021.

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Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition

Winners of the Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition by year.

2020 Winners

FIRST PLACE FEMALE: Lauren Albano, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

FIRST PLACE MALE: Markus Monistere, Sophomore, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

SECOND PLACE FEMALE: Catherine Mercatante, Senior, Cabrini High School, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Elizabeth Argus

SECOND PLACE MALE: Henry Herbert, Junior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

HONORABLE MENTION FEMALE: Brooklyn Burt, Junior, New Orleans for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

HONORABLE MENTION MALE: Daniel Porea, Jr., Senior, Lusher Charter School, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Ivan Griffin

2019 Winners

FIRST PLACE FEMALE WINNER: Julia Ernst, Senior, Archbishop Hannan High School, Covington, Louisiana, Instructor: Dr. Maryanne Kyle

FIRST PLACE MALE WINNER: Sebastien Shays, Senior, Lusher Charter School, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructors: Dr. Beth Rota and Dr. William Mouat

SECOND PLACE FEMALE WINNER: Lauren Albano, Junior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

SECOND PLACE MALE WINNER: Kadin Gaubert, Senior, Hahnville High School, Boutte, Louisiana, Instructor: Craig Matherne

HONORABLE MENTION:

Abigail Roques, Senior, Pensacola Christian Academy, Slidell, Louisiana; Instructor: Joy Greene Meade

A’farrah Wallance; Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

2018 Winners

FIRST PLACE FEMALE: Olivia Belle Gray, a Junior at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

FIRST PLACE MALE: Dade Michael Dufrene, a Senior at Hahnville High School (Boutte, Louisiana), Teacher: Craig Matherne

SECOND PLACE FEMALE: Sarah-Katherine McCallum, a Senior at Cedar School (Ruston, Louisiana), Teacher: Claire Vangelisti

SECOND PLACE MALE: Julian Maccrea Revell, Senior at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

HONORABLE MENTION:

Kieva Ja’Lisa Banks, a Junior at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

Lauren A. Albano, a Sophomore at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

Andrew David Aceves, a Senior at St. Paul’s High School (Covington, Louisiana), Teacher: Gail Adams 4. Ashton Louis Stephens, a Senior at Holy Cross High School (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Meredith Hotard

2017 Winners

FIRST PLACE FEMALE: Abigail Victoria Roques, Sophomore, Pensacola Christian School (Slidell, Louisiana), Teacher: Joy Meade

SECOND PLACE FEMALE: Olivia Belle Gray, Junior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

FIRST PLACE MALE: Rafael Jose Rovelo, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

SECOND PLACE MALE: William Nicholas Dopp, Senior, Loranger High (Loranger, Louisiana), Teacher: Steven Rushing

HONORABLE MENTION:

Madeleine Eugenie Cucullu, Junior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (New Orleans, Louisiana), Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

Conrad J. Alleman, IISenior, Hahnville High School, (Boutte, Louisiana), Teacher Craig Matherne

2016 Winners

FIRST PLACE FEMALE: Victoria Elizabeth Richard, Senior, Magnet Academy for Cultural Arts, Opelousas, Louisiana, Teacher: Corliss Smith

SECOND PLACE FEMALE: Sarah-Katherine McCallum, Sophomore, Cedar Creek School, Ruston, Louisiana, Teachers: Claire Vangelisti, Cindy Hockenjos

FIRST PLACE MALE: William Nicholas Dopp, Junior, Loranger High School, Loranger, Louisiana, Teacher: Brent Goodrich Smith

SECOND PLACE MALE: Andrew David Aceves, Sophomore, St. Paul’s School, Covington, Louisiana, Teacher: Gail Adams

HONORABLE MENTION: Madeleine Eugenie Cucullu, Sophomore, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

2015 Winners

FIRST PLACE FEMALE: Emily Sheets, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts. Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

FIRST PLACE MALE: Ryan Reynolds, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

SECOND PLACE FEMALE: Imani Sarai Francis, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

SECOND PLACE MALE: Eddie Falshaw, Junior, Holy Cross/New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, Teacher: Lauren Gisclair

HONORABLE MENTION: Lindsey Reynolds, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, Teacher: Phyllis Treigle

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Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition Education News

And the Winners are…

2020-2021

FIRST PLACE FEMALE:

Lauren Albano, Senior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

FIRST PLACE MALE:

Markus Monistere, Sophomore, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

SECOND PLACE FEMALE:

Catherine Mercatante, Senior, Cabrini High School, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Elizabeth Argus

SECOND PLACE MALE:

Henry Herbert, Junior, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

HONORABLE MENTION FEMALE:

Brooklyn Burt, Junior, New Orleans for Creative Arts, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Phyllis Treigle

HONORABLE MENTION MALE:

Daniel Porea, Jr., Senior, Lusher Charter School, New Orleans, Louisiana, Instructor: Ivan Griffin

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Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition Education News

Congratulations to the Wood Advancement Grant recipients!

Imani was the Second place female winner of the Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition (2015-2016). She was also the 2019 Fall/Winter recipient of the Wood Operatic Advancement Grant.

Lindsey received honorable mention at the Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition (2015-2016) and was also the recipient of the 2020 Spring/Summer Wood Operatic Grant.

Imani Sarai Francis, B. M. , Boston Conservatory at Berklee School of Music.

Imani is a proud 2020 graduate of Boston Conservatory at Berklee School of Music. Recently Imani was accepted to the Louisiana State University Graduate School of Music where she will pursue a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance. Her plans include studying under the very capable tutelage of Dr. Loraine Sims. Imani requests financial assistance for this upcoming school year of 2020-2021 and is very grateful to the Wood Foundation through the New Orleans Opera Association for their continuous support of her career goals and aspirations. Imani graciously writes: “This organization is truly God sent and I have been blessed by your genuine concern and generosity for me and other aspiring young artists.”

Lindsey Reynolds, a graduate student pursuing a Masters of Music degree at the Curtis Institute of Music.

Lindsey is studying under the tutelage of Julia Falkner at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She also holds a Bachelor of Music from the Curtis Institute of Music. She is a versatile young artist and her favorite roles include Zerlina Don Giovanni, Adina L’elisir d’amore, Giulietta I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Miss Wordsworth Albert Herring, and Monica The Medium. She is the recipient of many awards and accolades, including first place in the Camille Coloratura Awards: Student Division, James Toland Vocal Arts Competition: Tier 2, Junior Division of the Young Patronesses of the Opera/Florida Grand Opera National Voice Competition, Hal Leonard Vocal Competition, and the National Association of Negro Musicians Vocal Competition.

Last summer, Ms. Reynolds was a Gerdine Young Artist at Opera Theatre Saint Louis where she was to premiere the role of Lily in Awakenings written by Tobias Picker and Aryeh Lev Stollman (Canceled due to Covid-19). This October, Lindsey is very excited to be a featured artist in Lawrence Brownlee with Friends presented by Opera Philadelphia. It is her desire to have the funds to purchase equipment needed to accommodate performing and recording in this new COVID-19 world inside her one-bedroom apartment in Philadelphia and to purchase a camera, to rent professional space to make recordings, and to hire an accompanist. She needs this equipment to create the strongest videos possible for online auditions and competitions. All Young Artist Auditions are taking place online this fall, as are competitions. The Curtis Institute of Music, the Conservatory in which she is studying online as a first-year student in their Master’s Program, is not open to students or staff. No one can access their buildings. Such a strange new world in which we are residing. Lindsey confidently writes: “I hope to come out of this a stronger singer and performer!”

Congratulations to Imani and Lindsey!

Donations to the Wood Operatic Advancement Grant help finance and cultivate young vocal talent like Imani and Lindsey, please contact Gina Klein at the New Orleans Opera Office at (504) 267-9527 or write gklein@neworleansopera.org.

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Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition Education News

The 2020 Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition is going VIRTUAL

AND APPLICATION FEES ARE BEING WAIVED!

All submissions will be judged with winners announced on Saturday, October 24, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.
Presented by the New Orleans Opera Association in collaboration with Loyola University New Orleans, Tulane University and the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts.

How to participate in the Virtual 2020 Wood Competition:

  • Download and read the Guidelines and Application instructions below.
  • The Application is a fillable PDF and once you download and complete it, click the Submit button at the bottom of the form.
  • If you are unable to complete the submission process as outlined below, please print out the application, fill out out, scan it and email it to Debby Wood at woodcompetition@ neworleansopera.org.
  • Please note, the deadline to participate is midnight, September 8, 2020.

Guidelines

Application

Click here to download a free version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.


About the Competition

The Wood Competition is in its sixth year as a significant young artist entry vehicle into the professional realm of singing.  Past participants have enjoyed regional, national and international celebrity as young artist professionals. The competition is a collaborative effort between the New Orleans Opera Association, the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, Tulane University, and Loyola University New Orleans.

All local and regional voice teachers are invited to enter their students for this contest, and the deadline for 2020 is midnight September 8, 2020. Two first-place winners (male and female) will be awarded $1,000 each; two second-place winners (male and female) will receive $500 each. Please download the guidelines and competition application above to share with others.

Created by New Orleans Opera board member, Debby Hirsch Wood in honor of her late husband Donald W. Wood Sr., the Wood family has granted funding for the competition to continue in perpetuity in his name. Donald Wood Sr. loved opera and was supportive of NOOA’s educational endeavors.

The 2020 Judges

Frank Convit

Frank Convit, described as singing with the “poignant power of a seasoned soloist” (Richard Balthazar Blog), has been captivating audiences with his rich timbre and ringing high notes.

Valerie Anne Jones Francis

Valerie Anne Jones Francis is a native of New Orleans and a proud product of the New Orleans Public School System. She is a 1979 graduate of McDonogh #35 where she studied under the capable tutelage of Mrs. Patricia Sallier Seals.

Kenya Lawrence Jackson

Kenya Lawrence Jackson currently serves as the Director of Music and Worship at St. Timothy United Methodist Church in Mandeville, LA where her duties include coordinating a large and diverse music program.

Previous Winners

View the list of the competition winners by year here.

Do you have questions?

Contact Debby Wood, Wood Competition Director (504) 931-3608 or
Email: woodcompetition@neworleansopera.org
OR
Dr. William Mouat, Education Director (504) 267-9535 at email:
education@neworleansopera.org

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Donald W. Wood, Sr. Vocal Competition

The New Orleans Opera Association’s Wood Operatic Advancement Grant Recipients

2020 SPRING/SUMMER

LINDSEY REYNOLDS Honorable mention (2015-2016) at the Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition as well as the recipient of the 2020 Spring/Summer Wood Operatic Grant provided by the New Orleans Opera Association. Lindsey currently is a Senior at the Curtis Institute of Music where she is pursuing a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance under the tutelage of Julia Falkner. As a versatile young artist, Lindsey’s favorite roles include Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Adina (L’elisir d’amore), Giulietta (I Capuleti e i Montecchi), Miss Wordsworth (Albert Herring) and Monica (The Medium). Lindsey is the recipient of many awards and accolades, including first place in the James Toland Vocal Arts Competition: Tier 2, Junior Division of the Young Patronesses of the Opera/Florida Grand Opera National Voice Competition, Hal Leonard Vocal Competition, and the National Association of Negro Musicians Vocal Competition. This summer, Lindsey has been selected as a Gerdine Young Artist at Opera Theatre Saint Louis where she will be debuting the role of Lily in the world premiere of Awakenings by Tobias Picker and Aryeh Lev Stollman. She is also planning on competing in the Pendine International Voice of the Future Competition in Wales, United Kingdom, and, in doing so, she will work directly with the Royal Opera House coaching staff. Lindsey’s looking forward to making European connections in the world of opera.

EMILY TREIGLE First place female winner at the very first Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition (2015-2016) as well as the recipient of the 2020 Spring/Summer Wood Operatic Advancement Grant provided by the New Orleans Opera Association. With a 3.5 grade point average, Emily is a Senior at Rice University in Houston, Texas where she is pursuing a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance. She will graduate from Rice University in May, 2020. She is currently auditioning at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as well as Rice University. She has been chosen as the Studio Artist with the Wolf Trap Opera in Vienna, Virginia where she will perform in the summer of 2020 the role of Filippyevna in Eugene Onegin by Tchaikovsky.

 2019 FALL/WINTER

DADE DUFRENE  First male place winner (2018-2019) at the Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition as well as the 2019 Fall/Winter recipient of the Wood Operatic Advancement Grant provided by the New Orleans Opera Association. He is a Freshman at the Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge in vocal performance under the vocal coaching of Ms. Karen Bradshaw in an effort to expand his vocal talents in classical and modern music genres. Dade hopes to raise enough money to go to THROGA in Las Vegas in July of 2020, for a week-long vocal training retreat. At THROGA, Dade will be taught by professionals, have the use of a top-of-the-line recording studio, and is looking forward to the release of his first music video.

IMANI FRANCIS Second place female winner of the Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition (2015-2016) also the 2019 Fall/Winter recipient of the Wood Operatic Advancement Grant provided by the New Orleans Opera Association. Imani is currently a Senior at Boston Conservatory at Berklee College of Music graduating with a Bachelor of Music in vocal performance in May of 2020. Imani has been very active in recitals and performances in New Orleans, Boston, and New York, as well at Boston Conservatory. She has performed and attended workshops and masterclasses with internationally renowned artists such as Robert Sims, Curtis Rayam, George Shirley, and Roderick Dixon while at the National Association of Negro Musicians conventions in New Orleans, and recently for the Centennial Convention held in Chicago, Illinois. In the summer of 2019, Imani made her operatic debut as Gloria Davenport, with MassOpera in their premier production of Freedom Ride by Dan Shore in Dorchester, Massachusetts. She also had the opportunity to sing for the National Baptist Convention held in New Orleans in July of 2019. In 2017, she was a guest recitalist with Canto Lirico International Competition in Trujillo, Peru, and guest vocalist in the B–Sharp Concert Series, as well as First “Singer Spotlight” duo-performance with her mother, Dr. Valerie Anne Jones Francis on the Harry Connick, Jr. TV Show in New York. Imani is a Life member of the Patriotic Project Statewide Youth Chorus, Boston Conservatory Opera Ensemble in Dialogues of the Carmelites; Co-Founder of the Robert Honeysucker Negro Spiritual Concert Series, Boston Conservatory at Berklee; Black Student Alliance, Boston Conservatory at Berklee; recording secretary and vice president, soloist and member of Boston Conservatory at Berklee Concert Choir; recitalist, Boston Conservatory at Berklee Voice Department and is the vocal student of Ms. Patty Thom.  Imani will apply to several universities for graduate school as well as numerous 2020 summer music programs.

SARAH KATHERINE McCALLUM Second place female winner twice (2016-2017 and 2018-2019) at the Donald W. Wood Sr. Vocal Competition as well as the 2019 Fall/Winter recipient of the Wood Operatic Advancement Grant provided by the New Orleans Opera Association.  Sarah is currently a Freshman at LSU and is a vocal performance student of Dr. Loraine Sims. Sarah sings with the LSU A Cappella Choir but outside of the practice room, she is a sorority member of Delta Delta Delta, is a Greek Ambassador, is an active member of the LSU Student Government, and is involved in The Refuge campus ministry.