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Voice Students Advance to Statewide Singing Regionals

Four Brevard College voice students were among the best student performers at the North Carolina Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NC NATS) Auditions held recently in Greensboro, N.C.

Soprano Rachel Anthony, mezzo-soprano Alisha Carland, tenor Blake Ellege and soprano Katie Smathers were ranked in the top tier of the 400 singers who participated at the recent auditions. Ellege and Carland both placed third in their respective categories.

Those four students – along with soprano Natalie Comeaux, who took top honors at the Music Theater Auditions held by NC NATS last fall – will now advance to the NATS Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference and Auditions in April. Ellege, who won his respective category at the earlier NC NATS Music Theater Auditions, will have the opportunity to perform in two separate categories at the upcoming regional competition.

The six total student auditions will represent the highest number Brevard College has ever performed at the NATS Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference, according to Brevard College Assistant Professor of Music Dr. David Gresham.

“To have a student body of under 1,000 and to be taking any singers to the regional level is a real feat” said Dr. David Gresham. “To be taking five is something that receives attention beyond this campus. As one of my colleagues said, ‘there must be some good things happening at Brevard.’ Indeed there are.”

Anthony, Carland, Comeaux and Smathers are students of Brevard College Associate Professor of Music Dr. Kathryn Gresham, while Ellege studies under Dr. David Gresham.

NATS is the largest professional organization for voice teachers in the country, offering development and networking opportunities for teachers, and supporting young singers through auditions, scholarships and master classes.  Participating students benefit both from the feedback they get from other teachers on their auditions and also from observing performances and master classes by some of the finest singers in the region.