Oratorio Society Of New York Announces Winners Of Lyndon Woodside Oratorio-Solo Competition

By Nicole Kuchta

The Oratorio Society of New York revealed the winners of the 43rd Annual Lyndon Woodside Oratorio-Solo Competition on April 6, 2019 following the finalists’ performances in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. Competition Chairwoman Janet Plucknett made the announcement.

Beating out well over a hundred other applicants from around the world, baritone Steven Eddy of Laurel, MD took first place, winning the Andrew R. Preis Award of $7,000. Eddy, who performed “Doch weichet, ihr tollen” from Bach’s cantata “Liebster Gott, wenn werd ich sterben,” BWV 8 and “Love bade me welcome” from Ralph Vaughan Williams’ “Five Mystical Songs,” holds a Masters in music from Indiana University. He has performed with Seraphic Fire, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, American Classical Orchestra, Fort Worth Opera, Opera Saratoga, Opera Birmingham, LoftOpera, Chelsea Opera, Aspen Opera, Tanglewood Music Center, and American Lyric Theatre, to name just a few.

Second place and the Stanley C. Meyerson Award of $5,000 went to contralto Heather Petrie, a native of Freeport, ME and founding member of the eight-voice treble group Etherea Vocal Ensemble. She has appeared as a soloist with the American Symphony Orchestra, CT Lyric Opera, Voices of Ascension, and Sacred Music in a Sacred Space. Third place and the Janet Plucknett Award of $3,000 went to baritone Nathaniel Sullivan, a native of Bettendorf, IA and 2018-19 fellow at Tanglewood Music Center. He took first place at the NATS National Musical Theatre Competition last year, and has appeared with the New York Choral Society at Carnegie Hall.

Additional prize winners include tenor Matthew Hill (Alfred H. Hubay Award, $2,500); mezzo-soprano Clare McCahan (Frances MacEachron Award, $1,500); mezzo-soprano Veronica Pollicino (Lyndon Woodside Encouragement Award, $1,000); baritone Joel Balzun (Robert & Winifred Connelly Green Award, $1,000); and soprano Suzanne Karpov (Leopold Damrosch Award, $1,000).

The panel of judges included Leslie Fagan, Dennis Keene, Mark Shapiro, Kent Tritle, and Pamela Walsh. Pianist Amir Farid provided accompaniment for the finalists.