ROCKPORT — Bay Chamber Concerts and Music School has announced its 2020 Young Stars of Maine Prizewinners. This rigorous annual competition awards cash prizes of $1,000 in seven categories for vocalists and instrumentalists.
Due to current safety guidelines, this year’s auditions were evaluated by video submission only. Though a public performance is not possible at this time, plans for a holiday concert that features all of the prizewinners are being considered. In the meantime, Bay Chamber will the video recordings featuring each winning performance on their YouTube Channel beginning Monday, June 22.
The 2020 Young Stars of Maine include Joshua Rosenthal, a violinist from Damariscotta and winner of the Ezra Rachlin Prize for Excellence.
He was concertmaster of the NEC Youth Symphony through the 2019 season, was scheduled to perform alongside A Far Cry in 2020, and has appeared on NPR’s radio show From the Top. He is also concertmaster of the Seacoast Community Orchestra, and performs with the Mozart Mentors Orchestra under Anthony Antolini. In 2019, he was the recipient of the Martin Güterman Chamber Music Scholarship at NEC Prep. Joshua currently studies privately under Lynn Chang at New England Conservatory Preparatory School in Boston, MA.
18 year-old mezzo soprano Annabel Parker, of Rockport, has been studying classical voice and piano since the age of seven, and currently studies voice with Kathryn DerMarderosian and piano with Jim Nga at Bay Chamber Music School.
Annabel is a four-year Allstate and District lll Mixed Choir participant, and four-time winner of NATS in her respective divisions. Since freshman year, she has been an active member in multiple school ensembles such as Chamber Singers, Chorale, Jazz Band on the piano, and Concert Band on the oboe and clarinet. Annabel has starred in various roles through her school and the community.
Most recently, she was seen on NPR’s From the Top singing “Quella Fiamma.”
In the fall, Annabel will be attending NYU’s Steinhardt School, majoring in Classical Vocal Performance. In 2019, Annabel was awarded the Ezra Rachlin Prize of Excellence and is this year’s recipient of the The Jean and Harvey Picker Senior Prize.
Pablo DaCosta, the 2020 winner of the Nathan E. Corning Jazz Prize, is a tenor and alto saxophone player and studies with Darren Whitney. Pablo, an 8th grader, attends the Harrison Middle School in Yarmouth. Pablo’s video recording features his interpretation of Charlie Parker’s Yard Bird Suite on tenor sax. When he is not practicing saxophone or doing photography in the woods, he can be found hiking in the White Mountains.
Inga Zimba, winner of the A.H. Chatfield Jr. Piano Prize, is a pianist, violinist, percussionist, and composer. She has been studying piano since the age four, and is currently a student of Lily Funahashi of Colby College. In 2015 and 2017, Inga placed 3rd at the Pine Tree Piano Competition, and in 2019, received a 2nd place award in the Senior Division.
As a pianist in the Waterville Senior High School Jazz Ensemble, she received the Maine State Jazz Festival Outstanding Musician Award in 2015 and 2017, and received the MMEA Jazz Festival Award in 2019. In 2018, Inga was the recipient of Bay Chamber’s Elsie Bixler Junior Prize for piano. In the summer of 2019 and 2020, Inga was accepted into the Kneisel Hall Maine Students Chamber Music Festival.
This fall Inga will be a senior at Waterville Senior High School.
Kayleigh Tolley is a rising sophomore at Oberlin Conservatory where she is pursuing a Bachelor of Music in Classical Voice Performance.
She studies under Dr. Katherine Jolly. Kayleigh grew up in Waldoboro where she was heavily involved in the arts, both in the community and at her high school, Lincoln Academy. She has sung in many choirs, competed at the state level and won awards for her acting in the Maine One Act Drama Festival, and performed frequently with Heartwood Regional Theater Company. She is a six-time finalist at the Maine NATS Musical Theater and Classical Singing Competitions, placing first place three times.
Aidan Montmeny, winner of The Summer Strings Prize, is a high school sophomore and lives in Pownal, Maine. He began studying violin privately when he was six years old. Aidan very much enjoys playing in the Kennebec Youth Symphony, exploring chamber music, and tackling a new musical challenge with his friends at Pineland Suzuki School. When not occupied with homeschooling or violin, Aidan loves to bake and play card games with his three siblings.
Anya Mazaris-Atkinson, winner of the Elsie Bixler Junior Prize, will be a junior at Gorham High School in the fall.
This is her eighth year playing flute, and she holds a passion for all types of music. She has placed in top chairs in several ensembles including the MMEA District 1 Concert Band in both 2019 and 2020, John Philip Sousa National Honors Band - New England 2019, Portland Youth Wind Ensemble, and the Portland Youth Symphony Orchestra. Anya also placed as principal flutist in the Southern Maine Music Academy Concert Band in the summer of 2019, and more recently in the MMEA Allstate Orchestra 2020. This year she was a finalist in the Bangor Symphony Orchestra High School Concerto Competition and is the winner of the Portland Youth Ensemble Scholarship. Anya enjoys other musical activities as well. She plays alto saxophone in the Gorham High School Jazz Band, sings in Chamber Singers, and plays steel drums. When Anya isn’t playing music, she can be found playing volleyball or experimenting with cooking food.