December 18, 2017
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Falmouth teen takes top honor for saxophone work at New England Music Camp

By Colin Ellis, The Forecaster
Courtesy of New England Music Camp | BDN
Courtesy of New England Music Camp | BDN
Emma Mooradian, 17, of Falmouth, plays alto saxaphone during the final performance at the New England Music Camp in Sidney.

FALMOUTH, Maine — A Falmouth High School rising senior has won a national music competition for students.

Emma Mooradian, 17, competed against 10 other student musicians from across the nation at the New England Music Camp in Sidney to win the camp’s annual Concerto Competition.

Mooradian said she has been playing the alto saxophone for six years.

“From Day One I’ve loved it, and it’s great to be able to come to camp and play for six weeks and just focus on music. To be able to do this concerto is really awesome,” she said.

Mooradian presented her competition piece with the faculty orchestra at the final recital on Aug. 6.

“I was completely surprised. I’d gone for it before, but this time, I don’t know, I didn’t really expect anything,” Mooradian said. “I just wanted to be a finalist, and when I found out I won I was just completely blown away.”

The piece Mooradian auditioned with was “Tableaux de Provence Concerto,” by the late French composer Paule Maurice.

Gail Levinsky, director of the jazz band at NEMC, said the prize for winning the competition is all about prestige.

“It’s a big deal,” Levinsky said. “They present in front of a full recital hall of 250 to 300 people from not only the camp, but beyond. It’s a very, very prestigious opportunity.”

According to Levinsky, the competition is the highlight of the New England Music Camp. It’s where the older campers can showcase their talents and gain competitive experience.

“We typically range from eight to 16 competitors, representing all ages of the camp,” Levinsky said. “We have a first round, and typically three to four are selected for the finals, and those students come in and present their competition piece to the entire faculty.”

Levinsky said the faculty then votes on the winner.

“For NEMC the camp is not only national, we have students from Spain, and numerous countries,” Levinsky said. “Each year it changes a little bit, we’ve had many students from Asia and all over.”

“Of course the center of it all is New England, but we have students from all over the country and around the world,” Levinsky said.

She added that Mooradian was the only Maine student in the final four.

According to Levinsky, NEMC has capacity for 195 campers per session, and there are two three-week sessions each summer. It was chartered in 1937 by Dr. Paul Wiggin, and is still run by the Wiggin family.


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