June 2015 Winner: Andrew Stephens

Andrew Stephens is a graduate of Rio Americano High School in Sacramento, California, and is currently a freshman at UC Berkeley. While at Rio Americano, Andrew played lead trumpet and was soloist in their award-winning AM Jazz Ensemble for all four years of high school. He has studied trumpet under the tutelage of Maurice Montgomery, Tom Peron, Larry Lunetta, Tiger Okoshi, and Steve Roach.

Andrew has attended summer jazz camps at California State University, Sacramento; the University of the Pacific; Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society Summer Camp in Northern California; Centrum Jazz Workshops in Port Townsend, Washington; and the 2012 Berklee School of Music Five-Week Summer Program on a full-tuition scholarship. In addition, he was honored to receive a lesson in the home of Wynton Marsalis in 2014.

In educational settings, Andrew has played with Joe Lovano, Eric Harland, Marcus Printup, Delfeayo Marsalis, Jason Marsalis, Donny McCaslin, Lew Soloff, the Brubeck Brothers, Wayne Bergeron, Ku-umba, Frank Lacy, Tia Fuller, Conrad Herwig, Ryan Kisor, Phil Wilson, Scott Whitfield, Larry Lunetta, Vijay Iyer, Mike Vax, Bob Draga, Walter Blanding, Wessell Anderson, Dr. Joe Gilman (of the Brubeck Institute UOP), Ted Nash, Reggie Thomas, Bria Skonberg, the Au Brothers, Sacramento State’s 4pm Jazz Ensemble, the Harley White Jr. Jazz Orchestra, and the Sacramento Jazz Orchestra.

With Rio’s AM Jazz Ensemble, Stephens performed at the 2012, 2013, and 2014 Essentially Ellington Festival; the 2013 and 2014 Charles Mingus Jazz Festival; the 2011 – 2014 Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival; Folsom Jazz Festival; and the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Youth Band Festival, receiving outstanding soloist awards at each of these events. With Rio Americano’s AM Jazz Ensemble, Andrew toured Spain in 2012 and Italy in the summer of 2014. He played at the Monterey Jazz Festival with the Rio Americano AM Jazz Ensemble from 2010 to 2013 and was the recipient of the Louis Armstrong Jazz Award from Rio American High School in 2014.

Andrew was selected to play in the 2013 and 2014 Monterey Jazz Festival’s Next Generation Jazz Orchestra (NGJO), under the direction of Dr. Paul Contos. In the summer of 2013, the NGJO performed in New York City, Boston, the Montreal International Jazz Festival, and the Monterey Jazz Festival. In 2014, the NGJO toured Japan, performed at the Legends of Jazz Gala in Monterey, and performed twice on the Jimmy Lyons Stage at the Monterey Jazz Festival.

Andrew was selected to play lead trumpet in the 2014 Grammy Camp—Jazz Session. At the Grammy Camp, he spent ten days in Los Angeles, rehearsing and performing under the direction of Mr. Justin DiCioccio. This elite group of high school musicians from around the country attended the 56th Annual Grammy Awards Show, recorded a CD at Capitol Records, and performed at the prestigious Grammy nominee reception and after-ceremony party, as well as at various other venues during the week leading up to the award show.

In addition to being a dedicated musician, Andrew was also recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Program as a Commended Scholar, by the College Board Organization as an AP Scholar with Distinction, and by the National Honor Society.

Andrew graduated from high school with honors in June 2014 and currently attends UC Berkeley as a math major (his other passion). He plays lead trumpet in UC Berkeley’s large jazz ensemble, under the direction of Steve Campos, and in an advanced jazz combo, under the direction of Dann Zinn. As the June 2015 Young Artist Award recipient, he will receive a one-year complimentary membership to ITG. Congratulations, Andrew!


March 2015 Winner: Geoff Gallante

One of the most celebrated young musicians in the world today, fourteen-year-old Geoff Gallante found his older brother's trumpet at age four and has since performed on prominent stages and alongside distinguished artists all over the United States as church soloist; featured jazz performer; national anthem performer; and acclaimed soloist with concert bands, brass bands, and pops orchestras.

Gallante has not only performed in 34 states; he has played with five different US military ensembles and with various nationally acclaimed groups. By the age of six, he had already garnered guest soloist engagements with such groups as the Louisville Orchestra, the Duke Ellington Orchestra, and the Philadelphia Brass Quintet, among others. As a National Anthem performer, Gallante has appeared at sixteen pro-sports venues across the country, seven MLB stadiums, eight NBA arenas, and one NHL arena. At six years old, he became the youngest instrumentalist ever to perform at either the White House or the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. Gallante's network TV appearances include The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, NBC's Today Show and the CBS Early Show.

In addition to solo engagements with professional pops orchestras in Kentucky, Massachusetts, Illinois, Indiana, and New Jersey, Gallante has soloed with some of America's finest symphonic bands. Most notably, he has performed with the US Naval Academy Concert Band, Ridgewood (New Jersey) Concert Band, Allentown (Pennsylvania) Band, Wheaton (Illinois) Municipal Band, Compton Heights (St. Louis) Concert Band, Ames (Iowa) Municipal Band, Plano (Texas) Community Band, Naples (Florida) Concert Band, Fond Du Lac (Wisconsin) Symphonic Band, Northwinds Symphonic Band (Georgia), and Metropolitan (Boston) Wind Sym­phony. In 2012, at age eleven, Gallante was honored with a guest soloist appearance at the annual convention of the Association of Concert Bands in Poughkeepsie, New York. In July of 2014, he also had the distinction of performing as guest soloist at the Texas Bandmasters Convention, the largest of its kind in the world.
In the jazz realm, Gallante is comfortable playing all styles, from traditional New Orleans style to small-group straight-ahead jazz and classic big band and swing. As a 'traditional' jazz player, he is a member of the DC-based award-winning Capital Focus Jazz Band. As a big band trumpeter, he plays in the Blues Alley Youth Jazz Orchestra. The former is geared toward college-age musicians, and the latter toward high school musicians; Gallante's talent has obviously trumped the age requirements of those two groups, as both made exceptions to welcome him at just nine years old.

As a straight-ahead jazz performer, Gallante has shared the stage with such jazz icons as Maynard Ferguson, Dick Hyman, and Bucky Pizzarelli, as well as a host of other distinguished jazz musicians, including Earl Klugh, Kevin Mahogany, Cyrus Chestnut, Harry Allen, James Carter, Warren Vache, Allen Vache, Chris Botti, Christian McBride, Etienne Charles, Claudio Roditi, and John Clayton. Gallante has performed at such prominent jazz venues as Andy's (Chicago), Blues Alley (DC), Metropolitan Room and Iridium (NYC), Scullers (Boston), Shanghai Jazz (New Jersey), and Herb Alpert's Vibrato Grill Jazz in LA. Gallante says that his coolest gig to date has been as a featured performer for the 2012 edition of the 'Jazz Fest at Sea' cruise event.

During the 2013 - 2014 concert season, Gallante performed as featured jazz artist in New Mexico, Delaware, California, Florida, New Jersey, Michigan, Indiana, and New York City; as concert band soloist in Michigan, Florida, Texas, and New York; and as brass band soloist in Tennessee.
Gallante is in his first year of high school in Alexandria, Virginia.

As the March 2015 Young Artist Award recipient, he will receive a one-year complimentary membership to ITG. Congratulations, Geoff!

January 2015 Winner: Sophie Spencer

Sophie Spencer is fifteen years old and attends Abbotsleigh School in Sydney, Australia, on a full academic scholarship. She plays trumpet and sings in several Abbotsleigh ensembles and in various school musicals. She has been learning trumpet since 2006 and has studied with David Elton, James Brice, and Brian Evans.

Sophie is passionate about her trumpet playing and has been a member of the nationally acclaimed Castle Hill RSL Youth Wind Orchestra for the past five years. In 2013, she joined the Sydney Youth Orchestra Philharmonic on trumpet. She plays soprano cornet with Warringah Brass Band and successfully auditioned for a soprano cornet chair in the 2013 National Australia Brass Youth Band, under the baton of Professor David King.

As a soloist, Sophie is the Australian National Junior Trumpet and Soprano Cornet Champion—a title that she has also held in both 2012 and 2013. She is also the 2013 NSW State Junior and Juvenile Trumpet and Sop­rano Cornet Champion.

Sophie won the 2013 NSW Band Association's Junior and Juvenile Champ­ion of Champions Award, performing on trum­pet, and she has been the Juvenile Champion of Champions on trumpet for 2010 – 2013, inclusive.

Sophie performed in the 2013 Australian Concerto Competition and was named the “Most Promising Brass/Woodwind Peformers for the competition. She won the Brass Instrument Solo (18 years and under) division of the 2013 Sydney Eis­teddfod. She was a semi-finalist in the 2013 102.5FM Young Virtuosi/Young Performers Awards, and her 45-minute program was broadcast on 2MBS-FM. She was a finalist in the 2013 NSW Secondary Schools Concerto Competition and was awarded the Kuringai Philharmonic Orchestra’s Players Award in the finals.

Sophie successfully auditioned on trumpet for the 2014 Australian Youth Orchestra’s National Music Camp and spent an exciting fortnight working with like-minded passionate musicians, performing Stravinsky’s Petroushka and Haydn’s Symphony No. 104 under the baton of Alexandre Bloch. Sophie performed with the Australian Youth Orchestra in the July 2014 season under the baton of Simone Young.

A versatile musical talent, Sophie has attained advanced standing on piano, violin and viola and is currently in her eleventh year with the Australian Girls Choir. She represents Abbotsleigh in netball, softball, basketball, and touch football and also plays club netball. She has completed her bronze and silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards and is hoping to attain the gold award.

When she was eleven years old, Sophie attended the 2010 ITG Conference in Sydney, Australia, and placed second in the ITG Youth Competition. She still talks of her wonderful ITG experience and hopes that she will one day have the opportunity to attend another ITG conference. Sophie is honoured and humbled to be the recipient of an International Trumpet Guild Young Artist Award.

As the January 2015 Young Artist Award recipient, Sophie will receive a one-year complimentary membership to ITG. Congratulations, Sophie!


October 2014 Winner: Brent Proseus

Brent Proseus is currently a senior in high school and has distinguished himself as an excellent trumpet player and musician in both classical and jazz genres. He won ITG Conference Scholarships in 2013 and 2014, and he won the third-place prize in the Senior Division of the ITG Youth Competition in 2014.

Brent’s first trumpet teacher was his father, Eric and since the seventh grade Brent has continued his studies with Gregg Good. As an eighth grader, Brent was principal trumpet in the Michigan Junior High All-State Band. In his sophomore year, he was principal trumpet in the Michigan All-state Orchestra and in his junior year, he was lead trumpet in the Michigan All-State Jazz Band. He won a featured soloist award at the Michigan Youth Arts All-State Competition and will solo with that orchestra at the gala concert. Currently, Brent plays in his high school concert and jazz bands with the West Michigan Homeschool Fine Arts. He has also contributed to the Grand Rapids community by playing in the Grand Rapids Youth Symphony since the eighth grade, holding the co-principal or principal position.

In the Michigan State Solo and Ensemble Festival, Brent has achieved the highest ratings and scores throughout his junior high and high school years. As a sophomore, he received a perfect 100% score, playing the first movement of Henri Tomasi’s Trum­pet Concerto. As a junior, he performed Jolivet’s Con­certino at Michigan State Solo and Ensemble Festival. Besides classical trumpet honors, Brent has also won many awards in jazz, including the Hastings Jazz Festival soloist award and the Western Michigan University Jazz Festival lead trumpet and soloist awards. Brent also placed third in the high school division of the Grand Valley State University International Solo Competition, after his freshman year.

Outside of music, Brent loves academics, is active in his church and enjoys drawing. He plans to pursue trumpet performance as a career. As the June 2014 Young Artist Award recipient, Brent will receive a one-year complimentary membership to ITG. Congratulations, Brent!

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