Next American Traditions Competition Winner To Land Philharmonic Contract

Jorell Williams
Jorell Williams

The American Traditions Competition (ATC), along with the Savannah Philharmonic, has just upped the ante significantly by sweetening this year’s first-place prize package. In addition to the $12,000 Courtney Knight Gaines Gold Medal Award, the winner of the 2016 vocal arts competition will also receive a contract to sing with the Savannah Philharmonic during its next season.

As part of a mutually beneficial agreement between the two musical powerhouses, the ATC and the Philharmonic will work together to ensure the winner enjoys the advantages of much coveted artist contract. Both partners will work to promote the singer’s performances with the Philharmonic.

Both institutions are held in high regard by music enthusiasts throughout the Coastal Empire, having each built sound reputations for vocal excellence, professionalism and artistic merit.

Peter Shannon, the Savannah Philharmonic’s Artistic Director and Conductor commented “Every season the Savannah Philharmonic reaches out to new educational, medical and cultural institutions and partners with these in a wide range of collaborative efforts. Some of these partnerships have existed for quite a while, and one of our favorite organizations is The American Traditions Competition. With wonderful people like Danny Cohen and their fantastic Artistic Consultant Vale Rideout; it’s not only a great organization, but also rewarding and fun for all of us in the Philharmonic. We have had some of our best moments with them, and look forward to making many more in the future!”

The Philharmonic Chorus made its debut in October 2008, followed by the Philharmonic Orchestra in January 2009. The talented members and artists quickly put the both organizations on the map, and have enjoyed singing and playing for packed houses ever since.

The American Traditions Competition was established as a world-renowned arts institution in Savannah to provide a forum for showcasing tomorrow’s vocal talents and superstars and to celebrate the diverse repertoire of standard, classic

American music. Evolving from Savannah Onstage, which was established in 1992 and was the forerunner of the Savannah Music Festival, the ATC was created as a vocal competition for classic American music. In 2011, the ATC became an independent nonprofit.

“The progression of both institutions has been inspirational to watch over the years, and it’s thrilling to know this region wholeheartedly supports creative musical endeavors. This collaboration with the Savannah Philharmonic which will help ensure the future success of our next ATC winner is wonderful way to encourage crossover support from both fan bases and keep the momentum going,” said ATC Co-President Danny Cohen.

The 2016 ATC season begins Sunday, Feb. 21. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit The Philharmonic’s 2015-16 season runs through Saturday, April 30. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit

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