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University Relations

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May 27, 2005
Contact: Erin Curtis-Dierks, School of Fine Arts, (785) 864-9742.

KU piano students receive awards, recognition in Naftzger competition

LAWRENCE -- Music students at the University of Kansas School of Fine Arts once again were successful at the 2005 Naftzger Young Artists Auditions and Music Awards Competition, held in Wichita May 6 and 7.

Eighteen musicians were entered in the piano competition. Five KU students were selected to compete in the second round and three were selected to compete in the final round.

KU finalist Eunmee Song won the piano division award with her performance of Beethoven's "Sonata op. 57 'Appasionata,'" Liszt's "Concerto No. 2 in A Major" and Ravel's "La Valse," which she played in the finals.

Two additional Naftzger finalists in piano included James Michael Kirkendoll, doctoral student from Andover, and Graciella Kowalczyk of Warsaw, Poland, who currently lives in Overland Park and plans to study piano at KU with Sequeria Costa, the Cordelia Brown Murphy distinguished professor of piano, in the fall.

The Naftzger Young Artists Auditions and Music Awards Competition is open to residents of Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma or nonresidents who are enrolled in a college, university or conservatory in Kansas, Oklahoma or Missouri.

The annual competition is sponsored by the Naftzger Fund for the Arts, based in Wichita and administered by the Wichita Symphony Orchestra. The Naftzger awards offer $2,000 in cash prizes in piano, voice and instrumental categories.

The KU finalists' hometown information is:

From Andover
James Michael Kirkendoll, doctoral student in piano, is the son of Michael and Nancy Kirkendoll. He is studying with Jack Winerock, KU professor of piano. Kirkendoll has a bachelor's degree in piano and a master's degree from the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. He is a graduate of Andover High School.

From Anyang City, Kyungki-Do
Eunmee Song, a sophomore in piano performance, is the daughter of Kwang-Won Song. She is studying with Richard Reber, professor of piano and director of KU's piano division. Her previous music awards and honors include winning the freshman and sophomore auditions at KMTA last November and performing in the KMEA honors recital in February.


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