Local Musicians Given Opportunity to Attend Festival
Dr. Reid Smith, a native of Rockingham, has been invited to be on the faculty of the Batumi International Music Festival located on the Black Sea in Batumi, Republic of Georgia. Smith was the organist at Brownson Memorial Presbyterian Church in Southern Pines for five years before going to college and has many friends in this area.
Because of his local connections, Smith is inviting musicians in this area to apply in piano, violin, cello, or clarinet. The dates for the two-week festival are July 12-26. Most flight connections are through Istanbul, Turkey, and participants will have the opportunity of adding on a few days in Istanbul after the festival.
Students ages 10 to 25 must submit a recording or video to Smith by Tuesday, May 20, at DrReidSmith@aol.com. The recording should include a minimum of 10 minutes of music of different periods. Up to eight students from North Carolina will be chosen for this experience. In lieu of a recording, a live audition will be offered in Raleigh. Smith will be looking at the applicants' potential and experience.
Last summer, Smith was on the faculty of the Yves Nat International Piano Festival in Serignan, France. He selected 21 students from the United States to attend this festival under his auspices. Seven of these students were selected at the festival to perform also in New York City at Steinway Hall, including five pianists from North Carolina --Josh Chen and John Tyson, both from Rockingham, and Caroline, Sarah, and Catherine Cox of Pinehurst. Caroline, Sarah and Catherine Cox are the daughters of Drs. Carson and Valerie Cox, of Pinehurst.
This summer, students may perform in one or more of these categories: solo recitals, duet recitals, and concertos. Students who perform a movement of a concerto may also be chosen to play with orchestra. The Batumi Orchestra will be in residence during the festival. Once again, some students will be awarded a 2009 performance in New York, and one winner will receive a scholarship to the 2009 festival. The Batumi Music Festival is family-oriented and unlike most international festivals, offers an opportunity for students of all ages to expand their musical experience.
The opening concert will feature Reid Smith and Oxana Yablonskaya performing Mozart's "Double Piano Concerto" with the Batumi Orchestra.
Batumi is a tropical resort located on the Black Sea surrounded by beautiful mountains and beaches. It is a center of tourism that is crossed by the historical Silk trade route with many cultural groups and exotic cuisines.
For tuition, application forms and more information, contact Smith at DrReidSmith@aol.com. In addition to providing exceptional opportunities for those selected as performers, the festival is also an ideal environment for piano teachers, music lovers, and family members who may participate at a reduced tuition. Room and board are included for both performers and observers.
Pianists from North Carolina chosen for the festival may receive a scholarship to study with Smith in Minnesota during his summer program prior to the festival. These students will receive passes to attend the 2008 International E-Competition in St. Paul in July, featuring 30 pianists up to age 18 chosen from preliminary competitions throughout the world.
Smith presented solo recitals at the Cole Auditorium and at the Weymouth Center in Southern Pines several years ago. He teaches in St. Paul, Minn., as the director of the Dellwood Hills Piano School, with four assistants serving over 130 students.
He received a master's degree in piano at Juilliard and was selected as one of two full-time teaching fellows at the school. He has taught piano at Juilliard, Kent State University, St. John's University, and the University of Minnesota.
Smith toured the United States under auspices of Columbia Artists in Community Concerts Series for eight years and has performed with several orchestras. A recording artist, his second CD of the "Complete Chopin Etudes" was released in April.
More like this story