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"The President's Own"

United States Marine Band

Colonel Jason K. Fettig, Director
Unit News
Minnesota Trombonist Wins 2014 Concerto Competition

By SSgt Brian Rust | | February 27, 2014


Trombonist Isaac Johnson of Pine Island, Minn., won the Marine Band’s 2014 Concerto Competition with his performance of Henri Tomasi’s Waltz from Trombone Concerto during the competition final round on Saturday, Feb. 22 in John Philip Sousa Band Hall at the Marine Barracks Annex in southeast Washington, D.C. As winner, Johnson received a $2,500 cash prize from the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation and will appear as soloist in concert with the Marine Band on April 27 at Northern Virginia Community College’s Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center in Alexandria, Va.

More than 80 high school students from across the country sent in applications to the Concerto Competition, and from that pool six were chosen to compete in the final round presented as a recital open to the public. The final round included a judging panel consisting of Marine Band Director Col. Michael J. Colburn, Assistant Directors Maj. Jason K. Fettig and Capt. Michelle A. Rakers, and guest judge Professor John Hendricks, Director of Bands at West Virginia University. Following the recital, the judges deliberated privately to determine the winner while the audience and performers enjoyed light refreshments in the lobby.

In his comments before announcing Johnson as the winner, Col. Colburn remarked on the incredible talent of all of the finalists and recognized the amount of work and hours of practice to prepare for the competition. He noted how the judges are amazed each year at the level of maturity and performance ability of these young musicians.

Along with Johnson, the competition finalists included saxophonist Chad Lilley of Olney, Md.; euphonium player Joe Broom of McLean, Va.; flutist Paulina Tsao of Ann Arbor, Mich.; bassoonist Alfred Yi of Woodway, Wash.; and French horn player Mark Trotter of Seminole, Fla.

The Marine Band Concerto Competition is open to high school musicians, grades 9-12, that are performers of woodwind, brass, or percussion instruments. Details and application packets for the 2015 Concerto Competition will be available on the Marine Band website beginning in May.

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