GREENVILLE, S.C. (March 3, 2016) – Jonathan Simmons, junior cello performance major at Bob Jones University, was awarded second prize at the annual Tennessee Cello Workshop’s Concerto Competition hosted by Dr. Wesley Baldwin at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tennessee, Feb. 26 – Feb. 28.
Nearly 200 cellists from over the country attended, but only 17 were selected for the final competition. Simmons, a resident of Simpsonville, competed against three other students in the collegiate and young professional category from the University of Tennessee, Virginia Tech, and Tennessee Technical University. As part of the final round, Simmons performed the first movement of Haydn’s “Cello Concerto in D Major” and Tchaikovsky’s “Andante Cantabile” with the University of Tennessee Chamber Orchestra.
“I am really proud of his second place finish in the competition,” says Dr. Yuriy Leonovich, Simmons teacher. “Haydn’s D-major Cello Concerto is, in my opinion, the most difficult cello concerto in our repertoire, because of the need for pure intonation and refined sound in all 4 octaves of the cello. It was also a great opportunity for him to play with an orchestra again.”
Simmons was awarded a $600 scholarship for this accomplishment.