Kamarer Youth Soloist Competition

The John Kamarer Youth Soloist Competition

Before his untimely death, John Kamarer was a long time member of the Peoria Municipal Band playing alto saxophone and serving as the band manager. John was also the band director at Central Junior High in District 86 for many years. His love of music and his desire to inspire young musicians lives on through this annual competition.

The 2019 John Kamarer Youth Soloist Competition was held on Saturday, June 22nd at Dingeldine Music Center on the Bradley University campus. Congratulations to the 2019 winner, Michael John Paul Meyer, a recent graduate of Peoria Notre Dame High School, where he was involved in a variety of ensembles, including Peoria Notre Dame’s Concert Choir, Jazz and Chamber Ensemble (titled Scattered!), Concert Band, Marching Band, and Pep Band. Additionally, Michael was involved in several musical theatre productions, acting most notably as Reverend Shaw in Footloose. Outside of Notre Dame, Michael was a member of the Central Illinois Youth Symphony and is a current member of the Sacred Heart Church Choir.

Michael will be the fourth member of his family to perform with the Municipal band, as his three older sisters, Rebecca Opperman, Katie Speiden, and Stephanie Bartman have all performed as featured vocalists. Michael has taken flute lessons for 8 years, first under the tutelage of Valorie Mills and currently under the direction of Angela Loring. He is an Illinois State Scholar, a Sterling Merit Scholar, an Eagle Scout, and the recipient of the President’s Award for Educational Excellence, the National School Choir Award, and department awards for both English and Latin. Michael plans to attend Bradley University in the fall and study Business Management.

Past Winners

2018 – Amy Zhou, clarinet, Dunlap High School
2017 – Nathaniel Sanchez, oboe, Metamora High School
2016 – No Winner
2015 – Mallika Patel, flute, Metamora High School
2014 – No Winner
2013 – David Fenner, horn, Metamora High School
2012 – Mitch Lutz, clarinet, Morton High School
2011 – Colby Spengler, clarinet, Morton High School
2010 – Eileen Prescott, flute, Richwoods High School
2009 – William Butterfield III, trumpet, Richwoods High School
2008 – Dana Sloter, clarinet, Richwoods High School
2007 – Mark Donahue, clarinet, Morton High School
2006 – Emily Coon, flute, Morton High School
2005 – Brianna Gipp, oboe, Peoria Christian High School
2004 – Micah Lancaster, horn, Elvista Baptist Academey
2003 – Joshua Lancaster, trumpet, Elvista Baptist Academy
2002 – Kevin Moletti, trumpet, Dunlap High School
2001 – Samantha Inman, flute, Peoria Christian High School
2000 – Jeremy Clark, percussion, Manual High School
1999 – Sarah Robinson, trombone, Manual High School

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