Bethany students to compete nationally in music

Chad Frey

By Sentinel Staff

Elise Nelson and Amaya Dungan of Bethany College in Lindsborg were both selected to compete in the National Association of Teachers of Singing national auditions during the summer of 2021 following regional competition this month.

Each November, students from Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, and Wyoming gather to participate in the National Association of Teachers of Singing West Central Regional Conference.

Typically, the conference rotates between the participating states, but this year, the conference was held virtually. Part of the conference is the student auditions. Students can enter in two different categories: Music Theatre and Classical. Students prepare between three to five songs and arias based on their age and classification.

Students first participate in a preliminary round where they receive feedback and scores from three different judges. If they receive at least two scores of 90, they advance to the semifinal round where they compete against singers in the region. The top five scores from the semifinal round advance to the final round where they are ranked first through fifth place. Students who place in the top five go on to the national auditions where they compete against students from across the United States.

This year, Bethany College had several students enter the student auditions. Abby Rishel-Barnett, Maya Herrera, Elise Nelson, Matthew Eades, Elyse Boden, Amaya Dungan, Christian LaCount, and Kyler Dalke, all participated in the student auditions.

Elise Nelson and Amaya Dungan both advanced to the semifinals in the Classical category with Nelson competing against juniors and Dungan against freshmen. Amaya also advanced to the semifinals in Music Theatre category. Nelson and Dungan both made it to the final Classical round, which is judged by professional singers and performers from the Metropolitan Opera and Broadway.

Dungan’s entry for the final round was “O mio babbino caro” from Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini. Nelson’s final round entry was “Deh vieni non tardar” from Le nozze di figaro by W.A. Mozart.