2017 Scholarship Winners
Kali Hardwick studies vocal performance at the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music, where she will be honored as the Outstanding Graduate of the College of the Arts when she graduates this May. Kali has performed in numerous productions and has won numerous awards including the New Century Singers Scholarship and the Fine Arts Affiliates Scholarship at CSU Long Beach. She is currently preparing for the role of Ensoleillad in Massenet’s Cherubin and as a soloist for Mendelssohn’s Elijah. She was a featured soloist in Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass. When the Bob Cole Conservatory Chamber Choir competed in Wales and won the title “Choir of the World”, Kali fell in love with Britain. She is very excited to begin her graduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London this fall.
Niko Murakami, soprano, is a sophomore vocal performance major at Bob Cole Conservatory of Music at California State University Long Beach and is studying classical voice with Shigemi Matsumoto. This is her second year with the BCCM Opera Institute. This past fall, Niko starred in Opera Scenes performing Peep-Bo and Yum Yum from Gilbert and Sullivan’s Mikado. She also performed as Susanna from Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro. She is currently a member of the Conservatory’s University Choir under the direction of Joshua Palkki. Prior to attending the Conservatory, Niko sang with the South Bay Children’s Choir of El Camino College for eight years under the direction of its artistic director and conductor, Diane Simons.
Elizabeth Queen, who lives locally, is a graduate of the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music (BCCM). She is a coloratura soprano and her previous roles are many. She has sung in the BCCM scenes program under the direction of David Anglin, performing scenes from operas such as Cosi di Tutte, Der Freichutz, Alcina and L’eliser d’amore. In spring 2016, she premiered an original composition as the soprano soloist in Vasken Ohanian’s Recollections of the Forgotten. She has recently participated in Opera Works Emerging Artist Program, working with Eli Villanueva, and the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival. This summer, Elizabeth will be reprising the role of Konigin der Nacht at the Berlin Opera Academy in Berlin, Germany. She currently studies with Gail Gordon.
2017 Honorable Mention
Avery Roberts, tenor, was ten years old when he was invited to join the children’s chorus for Esa Pekka Salonen’s performance of Mahler’s 8th Symphony at the Hollywood Bowl, in Salonen’s final season as Music Director of the L.A. Phil. As a boy soprano, he sang “Carmen” with the LA Opera and recorded Nico Muhly’s “A Good Understanding” with the LA Master Chorale. In 2010, Avery wowed Disney Hall audiences with his poise and power in George Crumb’s “Ancient Voices of Children”. While in high school, Avery was awarded a chance to compose for the Pasadena Master Chorale in their inaugural “Voices of the Future” program. He performed the world premiere solo in Kirchner’s “Ca’ the Yowes to the Knowes” while being mentored by Cal State Long Beach’s Steven Kronauer. Now in his freshmen year at Chapman University, Avery is drawn to vocal music old and new. He continues to compose and arrange but has devoted himself to further discovering his voice with Patrick Goeser (past president, LA Chapter of National Association of Teachers of Singing) whose students perform regularly in the world’s leading opera houses. Avery is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music with an emphasis on vocal performance.
Emma Ujifusa, soprano, is currently a freshman and Music Education major at Pepperdine University. She has been singing in choirs since she was in the second grade at her church and throughout her schooling. Emma participated in SCVA honor choir and the All State Honor Choir during her junior year in high school. Her love of singing is as strong as her desire to educate. After college, she hopes to pursue a career as an educator at the high school level and hopefully, one day, at a collegiate level.