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Local students participate in state piano contests

Piano students from across Minnesota will take part in an honors concert in Minneapolis, the culmination of state piano contests sponsored by the Minnesota Music Teachers Association.

Bethany Hellem, Senior B Class, a student of Annette Helder of Brandon, won the honor of performing in the honors concert this year.

She and five others will perform in 31 ensembles in the State Honors Concert on Saturday, June 14 at 7 p.m. at the Minneapolis Convention Center Auditorium. This year marks the 79th consecutive year of this celebration of music and achievement.

Emily Larson, Senior A Class, and Chase Triebenbach, Primary 1 Class, both students of Marlene Larson of Osakis, were chosen as alternates, along with five others, who will be called up if needed.

More than 3,500 students across the state participated in the preliminary contest in January or February. The winners of that contest then performed for the final contest held in mid-March.

The results of the final contest and ensemble assignments for the winners were mailed to each teacher.

Each ensemble uses 20 grand pianos with half of the students assigned the Primo, and half the Secondo parts of the ensembles.

The following students were finalists in this year’s Alexandria preliminary contest at Calvary Lutheran Church on February 1:

Students of Annette Helder of Brandon: Sara Jacobson, Junior B Class; Lauren Landowski, Intermediate A Class.

Students of Marcia Benson of Alexandria: Ki Blaser, Junior B Class; Blake Anderson, Intermediate B Class; Sophia Anderson, Primary 1 Class.

Student of Jordyn Anderson of Alexandria: Camryn Marshall, Junior B Class.

Students of Marlene Larson of Osakis: Kadyn Triebenbach, Junior B Class; Carter Grove, Junior B Class; Logan Grove, Junior A Class.

Students of Shirley Holzer of Alexandria: Sophia Anderson, Voice 1; Amber Pietrowski, Voice 1; Winston Anderson, Voice 1.