As a development of our popular Arts4All Florida Young Soloists program, designed to identify and offer performance opportunities to talented young musicians throughout the state, we are pleased to announce our new Arts4All Florida Young Performers Program. This expanded program will increase our reach to recognize extraordinary performers, ages 14-24 in not only music, but also dance and theatre performance, that have a disability. Two emerging artists from each category will be selected by a panel of judges that are professionals in their specific field of performance.
All applicants will receive adjudication scores and personal written critiques that can be used to improve and refine their performance skills as they continue to develop. Winners of each category will be given the opportunity to perform at a professional venue that will be determined each year.
Applications for the 2019-2020 Arts4All Florida Young Performers Program are being accepted online. Application deadline is Monday, January 13, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. EST.
Below are the 2018-2019 Florida Young Soloist winners!
Sarah Hardwig had her first solo at her kindergarten graduation. Her music teacher identified her with perfect pitch and told her parents she had a future in music. Sarah attends Naples High School as a sophomore and sings with her school and church choirs. She has been a member of the Naples Philharmonic Youth Choir for seven years and has been taking acoustic guitar lessons with a former Nashville songwriter for four. She has performed the national anthem well over 100 times including the Miami Dolphins and the Baltimore Orioles games. Sarah annually travels to Nashville for the Country Music Association Festival and through dedicated networking has met top songwriters and music artists in that arena. She is a member of BMI (Broadcast Music, Inc.) for publishing as well as the Nashville Songwriter Association International. Sarah participates in the Island Hopper Songwriter Festival in Fort Myers and has recently begun performing her original songs. Sarah, who is blind, is known throughout southwest Florida for her talent, and her positive message remains inspirational to many.
Joseph Etienne was born with Level IV autism and by the age of six he was markedly behind his peers verbally and academically. Joseph’s family noticed that music had a soothing effect on him; calming him as he listened attentively. After a live concert, later that same evening, he would hum or sing the music exactly as it was played. As a result, his family gave him a saxophone when he was eleven years old and he began his music career. In four short years Joseph has blossomed into a notable musician. Joseph strives to be a great musician and is dedicated to his craft. Joseph regularly participates in school and church performances and local events such as graduations, scholarship award ceremonies, and wedding receptions. He currently takes music classes at Autry Music Institute and plans to pursue a degree in music with the hopes of teaching and instilling the same passion he has for excellence in music in others. Today, Joseph is not only an accomplished musician, but is performing at college-level academics in school. Music has indeed transformed his life.