Ted Stevens Young Alaskan Artist Award

The 2021 Ted Stevens Young Alaskan Artist Award competition is open!

Since 1999, the Anchorage Festival of Music has sponsored an annual competition to recognize an Alaskan classical musician entering the professional field. The competition is open to any Alaskan who is at least a college freshman pursuing a degree or program in music at an accredited institution.

To mark the 20th anniversary of the award and in recognition of the late Senator’s longtime support of the program, the Anchorage Festival of Music proudly renamed the award as the Ted Stevens Young Alaskan Artist Award in 2018.

Winners are presented in a debut recital and receive a substantial monetary award. Past winners continue to enjoy national and international careers as performers and music educators.

Applications must be postmarked or electronically submitted by May 28, 2021.

History of the Ted Stevens Young Alaskan Artist Award

Since 2000, the Anchorage Festival of Music has held an annual competition to recognize an Alaskan classical musician entering the professional field. This competition is unique in Alaska in its presentation of the young artist in a debut recital with a substantial monetary award. Past winners continue to enjoy national and international careers as performers and music educators.

In 1998, Alaskan pianist and Anchorage Festival of Music board member Juliana Osinchuk received a letter from Senator Ted Stevens asking her to contact and advise a young oboist from Fairbanks who had recently performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. Like every young talented, upcoming artist, Jaren Philleo was looking for performance opportunities and scholarship monies to enable further studies. The result was a successful Anchorage recital in August 1999. After this, the award became known as the Young Alaskan Artist Award and was annually sponsored by one of Alaska’s oldest performing arts organization, the Anchorage Festival of Music.

In 2008, in honor of the 10th anniversary of the Young Alaskan Artist Award program, the Anchorage Festival of Music invited previous winners to celebrate with three concerts of solo and chamber music. Six previous winners came to Alaska to perform.

Senator Stevens remained a strong supporter of the Award throughout his lifetime, often attending the winner’s recital. Two former winners performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. at the memorial concert honoring Senator Stevens in 2010.

The 20th year of the competition was celebrated with a gala reunion concert in summer 2018. Eight previous winners performed. The award was officially renamed as the Ted Stevens Young Alaskan Artist Award to honor and recognize the contributions of the late Senator.

Roster of Winners

1999 Jaren Philleo Oboe Fairbanks
2000 Audrey Solomon Violin Anchorage
2001 Jennifer Bacon Soprano Willow
2002 Damian Primis Bassoon Eagle River
2003 Pamela Harris Horn Fairbanks
2003 Evan Drummond Guitar Anchorage
2004 Christine Keene Soprano Anchorage
2005 Molly Emerman Violin Anchorage
2005 John Plucker Horn Haines
2006 Kate Emerman Soprano Anchorage
2007 Megan Bledsoe Harp Anchorage
2008 Christopher Hopkins Cello Fairbanks
2009 Elena Bird Soprano Nikiski
2009 Sydnee Waggoner Soprano Anchorage
2010 Patrick Hopkins Cello Fairbanks
2012 Christine Harada-Li Violin Anchorage
2013 Jari Piper Cello Anchorage
2014 Ceylon Mitchell III Flute Anchorage
2015 Zachary Spontak Violin Fairbanks
2018 Justin Birchell Baritone Anchorage
2019 Remy Libbrecht Oboe Anchorage

Download the 2021 Ted Stevens Young Alaskan Artist Award application here.

Download Application

Click here for KSKA’s State of Art program featuring YAA Director Juliana Osinchuk!

Anchorage Festival of Music
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