Students bring home honors at piano competition

Four parish students brought home high recognition after participating in the Torgrimson/Swanzy competition for Outstanding Students in New Orleans. 

Students who brought home prizes are Zoey Wang, 1st place Prep B student of Steele Moegle; Kaejha Steward, 3rd place Prep B student of Jeanne Patterson; Caed Baines, Honorable Mention Level II student of Jeanne Patterson; and Preston Parker, 1st Place Level II student of Denise Cox. 

This competition is held yearly by the Louisiana Music Teachers Association. Because of COVID, this competition has not happened since 2019, so it was a very special day for the students worked hard but who have missed two years of getting to compete.    

Each year in the spring, piano students in the Ruston area compete in a “rally” that is comprised of four parts: Performance, Scales, Sight Reading and a written Theory test.  Students who earn a score of 98 or above in the performance portion and scores of 94 or higher on the other three parts of rally are eligible to compete at T/S.  

The other three portions of the rally are not scored at T/S as participants are just judged on two pieces that they play from memory in front of not only a judge but a small crowd of parents, teachers and supporters.   

These two pieces must come from the three that they had performed at the District rally previously.  The competition is broken down into Prep B (grades 3/4), Level I (grades 5/6), Level II (grades 7/8), Level III (grades 9/10) and Level IV (grades 11/12).   

There were four local music teachers who had students qualify and attend T/S: Cody Chandler, Denise Cox, Steele Moegle and Jeanne Patterson.  Often, these teachers put in some extra work with their students attending state long after the regular lesson season has passed to ensure they are properly prepared.  

The competition was held this year at the University of New Orleans. 


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