Godfrey, Ill. – Nine Lewis & Clark voice students brought home awards during the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) Musical Theatre competition held at Webster University on Nov. 13. Students were judged by NATS members as well as Broadway and music theater professionals.

• Stephen Spilger, a tenor from St. Louis, received honorable mention in Upper High School Men Division 5
• Soprano Sydney Maples, of Edwardsville, won first place and Soprano Chelsea Williams, of Cottage Hills, won second place—sweeping Undergraduate Women Division 6
• In Divisions 7 -9 Undergraduate Men tenor Taylor Merritt, of Jerseyville, won first place and baritone Nickolas Yates, of Grafton, won second place
• In the leading men and women Divisions 10-12, Mezzo Soprano Heather Humphrey, of Roxana, was awarded first place and tenor Cole Gutman, of Grafton, won second place.
• Sopranos Esther Spilger, of St. Louis, and Julie McPike, of Alton, were awarded honorable mention.
All singers are students of Susan Parton Stanard, director of Lewis & Clark choral ensembles and vocal studies.

There were 64 competitors in groups that ranged from elementary school through adult representing private voice studios as well as voice studios from colleges and universities as Lewis and Clark Community College, Washington University, University of Missouri St. Louis, and Webster University.

The National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) was founded in 1944 and is now the largest association of teachers of singing in the world. Its mission is to encourage the highest standards of the vocal art and of ethical principles in the teaching of singing and to promote vocal education and research at all levels, both for the enrichment of the general public and for the professional advancement of the talented.

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