The American Traditions Vocal Competition ended a week of performances celebrating and preserving all styles of classic American music with the 25th Silver Jubilee anniversary competition at the Historic Savannah Theatre.
The five finalists had progressed through nine songs, each from different genres, through the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds earlier in the week.
The Gold Medal, worth $12,000 and a professional solo engagement with the Savannah Philharmonic Orchestra, was awarded to Erica Everett. This award was presented by Ernestine Dillard, who won the first ATC Gold Medal 25 years ago.
Other awards presented included:The Silver Medal and $6,000 was awarded to Brandon Michael Nase.The Bronze Medal and $3,000 was awarded to Michael Preacely. The Fourth Place Prize and $1,200 was awarded to Rachel Policar.The Fifth Place Prize and $1,200 was awarded to Rebecca Odorisio.A new award for 2018, the "Think Outside the Book" Award, worth $500 was presented to Rebecca Odorisio for her performance of a song from the "Not Heard a Lot" or "Rare Find" category of MusicTheaterSongs.com.The Johnny Mercer Award and $750 for best Johnny Mercer performance was awarded to Dara Tucker. The Toian Bowser-Alexander Award, worth $500, is given in honor of Ms. Toian Alexander, the first ATC treasurer, by James Edward Alexander. This award is voted on by contestants and rewards a contestant who exhibits helpfulness to others, encouragement and supportiveness. The Toian Bowser-Alexander Award was presented to Adam Griffiths. The Sherrill Milnes American Opera Award and $500 was presented to Emily Yocum Black for best American aria.The Ben Tucker Jazz Award, along with $500, was presented to Rebecca Odorisio for the best jazz performance.Two Richard Chambless People's Choice Awards were presented to Nat Zegree from the quarterfinals and Brian Giebler from the semifinal round. These awards, given by Swann Seiler in memory of her dear friend Richard Chambless, are presented on behalf of the audience.
"We have been blown away this week by the level of talent presented by all of our contestants," said ATC artistic director Mikki Sodergren. "Congratulations to our Gold Medal winner Erica Everett as well as all 28 contestants who participated in our 25th anniversary season!"
The ATC is a nonprofit arts organization seeking to celebrate and preserve all styles of classic American music through a unique vocal competition for highly skilled and diverse singing performers. Learn more at www.americantraditionscompetition.com.