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New York soprano wins voice competition

Published 4:48 pm, Thursday, December 13, 2012
  • Prize winners in the 2012 Heida Hermanns Voice Competition held Dec. 1 and 2 included, seated from left, Kathryn Leemhuis, first price; and Katrina Galka, second prize. Standing from left are Abigail Mitchell, third place; and honorable mentions Paloma Friedhoff Bello, Julie-Anne Hamula and Jennifer Russo. Photo: Contributed Photo / Westport News contributed
    Prize winners in the 2012 Heida Hermanns Voice Competition held Dec. 1 and 2 included, seated from left, Kathryn Leemhuis, first price; and Katrina Galka, second prize. Standing from left are Abigail Mitchell, third place; and honorable mentions Paloma Friedhoff Bello, Julie-Anne Hamula and Jennifer Russo. Photo: Contributed Photo

 

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A New York City vocalist captured first place in the 2012 Heida Hermanns International Voice Competition at Westport Town Hall this month.

Mezzo-soprano Kathryn Leemhuis won the $5,000 first prize in the two-day competition. Earlier this year, Leemhuis was a national semifinalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.

The competition, Dec. 2 and 3, was sponsored by the Connecticut Alliance for Music with support of the Westport Arts Center.

The contest annually attracts top vocalists ages 19 to 35 from around the world.

Katrina Galka of Allston, Mass., won the $2,500 second prize while Abigail Mitchell of Mount Pleasant, Mich., won the $1,500 third prize.

Prizes of $500 for honorable mention were awarded to Paloma Friedhoff Bello of Bloomington, Ind.; Julie-Anne Hamula of Fairlawn, N.J.; and Jennifer Russo of Old Brookville, N.Y.

The competition is named in honor of the late Heida Hermanns, a 40-year Westport resident, a concert pianist and promoter of music. She founded the competition in 1973, and her name was attached to it later.