NJCU Classical Vocal Major Headed to Nationals! 


David Mosca 

Elizabeth Smith, a Classical Vocal Performance major at NJCU, recently won the 30th Annual Vocal Arts Competition for Emerging Artists and is now headed to the National Convention which takes place every two years. Recently, the event has been held in Fort Worth, Texas and will be again this July. The age range for the Nationals is eighteen to thirty and the style of the competition is operatic/classical style.

The Vocal Arts Competition for Emerging Artists was first introduced at the Leontyne Price Vocal Arts Competition in 1983 by the National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women’s Club. The name was changed upon joining the National Opera Association to offer additional benefits to the contestants.

“The competition is designed to recognize promising black vocalists by providing a performance venue and scholarships,” said Smith in regards to the Vocal Arts Competition for Emerging Artists. “I will now be representing the East Coast region at the National convention in July.”

Smith also had a recital entitled “A Night of Music” on May 29th at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Jersey City. The recital was created to raise funds for the Chautauqua Music Festival which will be held in Chautauqua, NY this summer.

“There was a pretty awesome turnout,” said Smith. “It was the first vocal recital I have ever put on so it was definitely a learning experience.”

Smith is part of a voice program for the festival which is run by Marlena Malas, a renowned voice technician and recitalist, who is on the faculty of prestigious music conservatories and programs such as The Juilliard School and Curtis School of Music.

Prior to this win, Smith also won NJ NATS 2016 for 2nd place in the sophomore division, and first place in the Eastern Regional NATS competition in 2016 as well. Smith was also selected to attend the National NATS competition in Chicago last July, where she placed as a semi-finalist. Smith also placed as a semi-finalist in the international Classical Singer Competition in 2016.