Wednesday, 04 December 2013 11:33

Music students earn Gold Medals from Royal Conservatory of Music

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Barbara Levorson stands with Dr. Scott Brubacher, Royal Conservatory of Music's Academic Program Manager of Examinations with her newly earned medal at ceremony in Regina Nov. 30. Barbara Levorson stands with Dr. Scott Brubacher, Royal Conservatory of Music's Academic Program Manager of Examinations with her newly earned medal at ceremony in Regina Nov. 30. Photo contributed

Last Saturday, more than 60 Saskatchewan students of the Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM) were honoured in Regina as recipients of the 2013 Gold Medal in each of their respective disciplines. 


The gold medal is awarded to the student who receives the highest mark in their region for their discipline and grade. Students in piano, voice, guitar, harp, violin, violincello, clarinet, flute, french horn, trumpet and saxophone were in attendance at the Riddell Centre at the University of Regina, ranging from beginning students taking Preparatory exams up to the highest levels, Grade 10 and pedagogy.
Four students from Swift Current and area were among the gold medalists. Barbara Levorson, a local piano teacher, was the recipient of the Elementary Piano Pedagogy Gold Medal.
“It is such an unexpected honour,” says Levorson. “Of course, everyone wants to do well on their exams, but you’re not necessarily thinking about the medals at that time.”
Achieving the top mark is not a small undertaking.
“The most difficult part of pursuing my studies is to find the appropriate balance of time. As a single parent, I balance teaching and studying with the demands of my children, family and running the household. In addition, I am on the executive for the Music Festival, and publicity officer for the Registered Music Teachers of Swift Current. Both organizations help to develop professional connections within the community, but also support my children's activities too.”
Levorson is also the RCM Exam Centre representative for the Swift Current area, and is the primary point of contact for all local exam candidates. RCM theory exams are offered three times a year in Swift Current, and practical exams run in June.
“The Royal Conservatory is an internationally accredited institution, and offers exams in all areas of music study. It gives students a wonderful sense of accomplishment to complete these exams,” notes Levorson. “And, the Gold Medal ceremonies acknowledge exceptional achievement, which is very gratifying.”
RCM alumni include Oscar Peterson, Glenn Gould, Paul Shaffer (from Late Night with David Letterman), Diana Krall, Randy Bachman, David Foster, Sarah McLachlan, Shania Twain, just to name a few.
The weekend ceremony was also an opportunity to acknowledge the contribution of the students’ teachers, and they received a certificate as well.
“The role a music teacher has in a child's life is significant. Often students are with the same teacher for many years, and that teacher becomes a mentor and friend.” said Levorson.
Rebecca Chilton has been Levorson’s teacher for more than three years.
“Rebecca has been a fantastic mentor for me, and I absolutely credit her for helping me achieve my goals.
Other local Gold Medalists were Aspen Thompson (Preparatory Violin, teacher Celia Hammerton); Kenton Evenson (Grade 6 Piano, teacher Janice Friggstad); and Laura Stevenson (Preparatory Voice, teacher Eleanor Schrag).

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