March 1, 2017
BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— The Illinois Wesleyan Symphony Orchestra (IWSO) is a national finalist in The American Prize competition in the performing arts.
The IWSO is the second Illinois Wesleyan School of Music instrumental ensemble to be honored as an American Prize finalist. In December the Wind Ensemble was selected as one of only three finalists in the Band/Wind Ensemble Performance, college/university division.
IWSO is a finalist for the American Prize in Orchestral Performance, college/university division. This division “has always been one of the most competitive, but no more so than this year, when many of these fine orchestras tackled especially difficult repertoire and performed it so very well,” according to David Katz, chief judge of The American Prize national nonprofit competitions.
This academic year marks the 32nd season for the Illinois Wesleyan Symphony Orchestra. Founded by Steven W. Eggleston, the ensemble has performed with such guests as Dawn Upshaw, five-time Grammy Award-winning soprano and Illinois Wesleyan alumna; Armando Ghitalla, former principal trumpet of the Boston Symphony Orchestra; baritone Roger Roloff, former soloist with the Chicago Lyric Opera; and Laszlo Varga, former principal cellist of the New York Philharmonic. IWSO is conducted by Visiting Assistant Professor of Music Lev Ivanov, who was honored in February as a finalist for The American Prize in Conducting.