1ST PRIZE, KACIE BROWN
Kacie Brown is pursuing a Bachelors of Music degree in saxophone performance at Indiana University under the guidance of Dr. Otis Murphy. She is also pursuing a certificate in journalism through IU’s Media School and is a member of the Hutton Honors College. She attended Interlochen Arts Camp as a Fennell Scholar. She also regularly performs with her quartet, the Kanaderu Saxophone Quartet, most recently at the United States Navy Band’s International Saxophone Symposium.
2ND PRIZE, BETHANNE KUNERT
BethAnne Kunert is a saxophonist based in Detroit, Michigan. She has performed as a featured soloist with orchestras including the Music Academy of the West Festival Orchestra, Midland Symphony, Royal Oak Symphony, and the University of Michigan Philharmonic Orchestra. BethAnne is the alto and soprano saxophonist in Virago, an all-female contemporary music and improvisation sextet which performs throughout Michigan. Enthusiastic about contemporary music, BethAnne has performed with the University of Michigan’s Contemporary Directions Ensemble, Creative Arts Orchestra, on New Music Detroit’s Strange Beautiful Music Festival, and has premiered several new works by composers including George Lewis, David Gillingham, Harriet Steinke, and Nina Shekar. BethAnne holds degrees from the University of Michigan and Central Michigan University. Her primary teachers have been Timothy McAllister and John Nichol. Aside from being a saxophonist, BethAnne is a Development Associate at Detroit Chamber Winds & ArtOps, and maintains a private lesson studio of elementary through high school saxophonists.
3RD PRIZE, BECKY SWANSON
Becky Swanson is a saxophonist pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin under the instruction of Steven Jordheim. As a saxophonist, Becky’s primary interest is in contemporary music that is both meaningful and relevant, and has worked directly with a variety of composers including Marcos Balter, Stacy Garrop, and Asha Srinivasan. Her primary teachers have included Roger Birkeland, Sumner Truax, and Steven Jordheim, and she has performed in masterclasses for John Sampen, Nick Zoulek, Anna Marie Wytko, Drew Whiting, and the Ogni Suono duo. At Lawrence University, Becky enjoys playing in a number of ensembles ranging from non-standard chamber group settings, to the LU Wind Ensemble where she sits first chair. One of Becky’s most recent projects was a recital titled, “Snapshots of America.” This project explored themes of social justice and politics in contemporary music, and reflected Becky’s commitment to art with socio-political relevance.
In her pursuit to elevate contemporary music and bring new art into the world, Becky’s upcoming undergraduate senior recital will consist entirely of commissioned works from composers such as Alex Temple, Daniel Whitworth, Cassie Wieland, and Ben Portzen. Becky is also a passionate educator, and hopes to inspire new generations of musicians to bring about change through the mediums of art.