March 26, 2021

Winners of the 2021 Spring Concerto Competition

Alyssa Warcup, white woman with long blonde hair, wearing a red dress
Alyssa Warcup

Congratulations to the winners of this year’s Spring Concerto Competition, which took place on Wednesday, March 17 in Kulas Hall.

Doctoral piano student Jacob Bernhardt (Pontremoli/Jones) and undergraduate viola student Alyssa Warcup (Irvine) will both perform their chosen concerti with the Cleveland Institute of Music Orchestra during the 2021-22 academic year, under the direction of a special guest conductor.

When asked about their initial reactions to hearing the good news, both students expressed feeling a great joy and an overwhelming gratification that came with seeing their hard work pay off. “It was also rewarding,” Bernhardt said, “because it has been a lot of hard work and my teachers have invested lots of time into me as I learned the piece.

Jacob Bernhardt - white man in white shirt, black suit and tie standing in front of open piano
Jacob Bernhardt

For the competition, Bernhardt performed Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3, Op. 26. “I love Prokofiev's orchestration and can't wait to hear it up close,” Bernhardt said.

Warcup also expressed a great excitement about performing her selected work, Schnittke’s Concerto for Viola and Orchestra, with the CIM Orchestra in the fall semester.

“Playing the Schnittke Concerto is exhilarating, and I am looking forward to performing it with the full scope of colors that the orchestra has to offer,” Warcup said. “Performing alongside my good friends and colleagues in the CIM Orchestra is the perfect ending to my undergraduate experience.”

Faculty members Mary Schiller (voice), Todd Wilson (organ) and Sam Bivens (music theory), along with Cleveland Orchestra principal horn player Nathaniel Silberschlag, served as competition jurists.

Written by first-year master’s student Abigayle Williams, who studies with Mary Schiller.