Musical competition attracts students from across the country

29th Annual Young Artist Competition

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The Delta Symphony Orchestra held its 29th Young Artist Competition to showcase students with musical talent.

Twenty students from across the United States came to Arkansas State University March 16 to compete for prize money and the opportunity to perform with the Delta Symphony.

Conductor of the Delta Symphony Orchestra Neale Bartee said the competition is a great opportunity for students.

“This is a great thing for young artists,” Bartee said “It gives them an opportunity to practice their skill and to perform at a very high level. For a lot of them, it’s a kickoff in the beginning of their career.”

One contestant in the competition, Evan Watkins, said his competitors were talented.

“Today the competition is extremely high, especially with there being such a large number of pianists, there’s not always this many in this competition,” Watkins, who plays the piano, said.

A saxophonist, Jonah Cabral, said the key to competition is to focus on practicing the right way.

“You can practice something wrong and create all of these bad habits but if you practice it correctly, it’ll always be correct,” Cabral said.

The goal of the competition is to bring the cultural aspect into the area.

“We seek to provide a cultural opportunity in Northeast Arkansas that no one else can provide,” Bartee said.

The next concert is scheduled for May 5 at Arkansas State University.

For more information, go to or call 761-8254.

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