Campus Events, Student Life

CSU voice students competing in regionals in Virginia

By CSU Media | March 16, 2018
NATS 2018

(left to right, back row): Lyricc Jenkins, McKayla NeSmith, Kaegan Fitzherbert, Reece Nix, Justin Borak, Braxton Barnett and Jean-Claude Davidson
(left to right, front row): Jairus McClanahan, Ciara Wallace, Rachel Hiester, Timmi Winston and Zach Patton

Fourteen Charleston Southern University Horton School of Music students are competing at the Mid-Atlantic Region National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) Student Auditions at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., on March 16 and 17. 

Sixteen voice students from the Horton School of Music earned awards in two separate NATS South Carolina Chapter Student Auditions in 21 different categories, and 14 advanced to the Region competition.

More than 270 students auditioned in the Musical Theater auditions, and the following CSU students advanced: 

  • Jacob Turner in Lower College/Independent Studio Men
  • Justin Borak, Kaegan Fitzherbert, Jairus McClanahan and Zach Patton in Upper College/Independent Studio Men
  • McKayla NeSmith in First Year Lower College/Independent Studio Women
  • Lyricc Jenkins, Ciara Wallace and Timmi Winston in Second Year Lower College/Independent Studio Women
  • Meagan Carlson, Cassidy Galloway and Rachel Hiester in Upper College/Independent Studio Women

Turner, Patton, Carlson, Hiester and Winston are voice students of Dr. Jill Terhaar Lewis; Borak, Fitzherbert, McClanahan, Jenkins, Wallace and Galloway are students of Dr. Jennifer Luiken; and NeSmith is a student of Shanelle Woods.

The Classical Student Auditions included more than 340 students, and CSU students advancing were:

  • Jacob Turner and Reece Nix in Second Year College/Independent Studio Men
  • Kaegan Fitzherbert and Zach Patton in Third Year College/Independent Studio Men
  • Lyricc Jenkins in Second Year College/Independent Studio Women
  • Christine Barnes in Third Year College/Independent Studio Women
  • Meagan Carlson advanced in Fourth/Fifth Year College/Independent Studio Women.

Nix is a student of Ricard Bordas, and Barnes studies with Lewis. 

Three students earned the highest scores in their categories:

  • McKayla NeSmith in Lower College/Independent Studio Music Theater Women
  • Braxton Barnett in Contemporary Commercial Music Men
  • Jean-Claude Davidson in Adult Men

CCM and Adult Men are two categories that do not advance to Regionals. Barnett and Davidson also earned Certificate of Distinction awards in their categories.  They are both students of Lewis.

The Mid-Atlantic Region includes NATS chapters from South Carolina, as well as North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia. Roughly 1000 students are expected to compete. Students who finish in the top five of their respective categories at the regional level may advance to the national level in Las Vegas, Nev., in June.

CSU offers four degrees in music: Music and Worship Leadership, Music Education, Music Therapy, and Music Performance. Carlson, Patton, Jenkins, Turner, McClanahan and Fitzherbert are Music Performance majors. Nix, Wallace and Winston are majoring in Music Education. Barnes and Galloway are majoring in Music Therapy. NeSmith is an Early Childhood Education major, and Borak is a Communication major.

Lewis is finishing her first year as District Governor of the South Carolina Chapter of NATS.


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