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University Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition Finals

February 12, 2014

The CSU Symphony Orchestra hosts the 2013-2014 Concerto Competition Finals featuring CSU's finest soloists on Wednesday, February 12 at 7:30 p.m. in the Griffin Concert Hall at the University Center for the Arts, located at 1400 Remington St.

Star search comes to CSU!

The CSU Symphony Orchestra hosts the 2013-2014 Concerto Competition Finals.


  • $7/CSU students
  • $1/youth (under 18)
  • $12/public

Tickets are available at the University Center for the Arts (UCA) ticket office in the UCA lobby, by phone at 970-491-ARTS (2787) or online. Youth tickets must be purchased in person at the Ticket Office. Advance purchase is recommended to avoid at-the-door fees.

Star Search finalists

This year’s “Star Search” finalists are:

  • Yolanda Tapia, piano;
  • Robert Bonner, trumpet; and
  • Adrian Barrera Ramos, violin.

Who will emerge on top?

These soloists, chosen through audition, for the annual, highly competitive concerto competition will compete for monetary awards. First place will be awarded $1,000, second place $750, and third place $500.

The soloists each selected a piece (up to 16 minutes in length) to play with the Symphony Orchestra, which will be showcased during the competition.

The selections for this year are as follows:

• Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3, Mvt. 1, performed by Yolanda Tapia
• Arutunian Trumpet Concerto, performed by Robert Bonner
• Conus Violin Concerto, performed by Adrian Barrera Ramos

Competition friendly but fierce

When discussing the significance of this anticipated event, director of university orchestras Wes Kenney describes the student soloists’ experience.

“I’m always amazed at the extraordinary level of performance by our concerto finalists. They play with energy and passion, plus the competition is always friendly, but fierce!”

Following the competition pieces, the symphony continues the University Center for the Arts’ 5th Anniversary Season with a performance of the ever-popular Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 5.

As far as orchestral show pieces, it doesn’t get any better than the tunes found in Tchaikovsky’s 5th!

About Wes Kenney

The 2007 Grand Prize Winner of the Varna (Bulgaria) International Conducting Competition, Wes Kenney is now in his tenth season as Music Director of the Fort Collins (Colorado) Symphony. Named in 2004 to an additional post as Music Director of Opera Fort Collins, he currently conducts three professional operatic productions as well as numerous orchestra concerts and dance performances each season throughout Northern Colorado. Read more.

About the student soloists

Yolanda Tapia is studying for her Master’s in Music in Collaborative piano at Colorado State University with Dr. Silvana Santinelli.

Originally from Xalapa, Mexico, she has been a finalist of the IV and V edition of the international piano competition "Maria Clara Cullel" in San Jose, Costa Rica; winner of the Concerto Competition with Xalapa Symphony Orchestra in 2009 and second prize of the CSU Concerto Competition in 2013.

She was a recipient of the prize “Manuel M Ponce” for best chamber music group at the Chamber Music Festival in Aguascalientes, Mexico (2011). In 2012, she received a Fulbright scholarship for graduate studies in the U.S.

She has been invited to participate at the Academie Musicale de Morges in Switzerland, the “San Miguel de Allende" Chamber Music Festival and Orvieto Musica Festival in Italy. In her professional experiences, she worked for four years as a collaborative pianist of the Institute of Music of Veracruz State.

Robert Bonner a native Texan, is an avid free-lance trumpeter and chamber musician. As a chamber musician, Robert Bonner was a member of the Lubbock Symphony Educational Brass Quintet, the West Texas Brass and was an artist in residence at the Banff Centre in 2012.

Mr. Bonner has also performed with the National Repertoire Orchestra and Roundtop Festival Orchestra. Recently, Mr. Bonner has been a semi-finalist for The United States Army Band: Pershing’s Own and the West Point Academy band.

Bonner holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University in Music Education, where he studied with Will Strieder and Max Matzen. Robert is currently working toward his master’s degree in Trumpet Performance, and studies with Dr. Steven Marx.

Adrian Barrera Ramos is currently in the Master’s in Music program at Colorado State University. Born in Mexico City. Ramos began studying music at the age of nine under the guidance of professors Raúl Pérez y Bernal and Roberto Ramos Montesinos.

He completed his undergraduate degree in 2012 at the Conservatorio de Música y Artes de Celaya. He has served as concertmaster for the Orquesta Sinfónica Infantil de México and the Orquesta Sinfónica Juvenil “Silvestre Revueltas.”

Ramos has participated in numerous competitions including a first-place performance at the international competition held by EPTA (European Piano Teachers Association) in his 4ª. Rassegna Musicale “I Giovani e l´Arte”, held in Roma, Italy. That the same year he won first place in Premio Internazionale di Musica “suoni nel Pollino- Gran Premio della Calabria” held in Cosenza, Italy.

Contact: Mike Solo
Phone: (970) 491-5293