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Billings pianists inducted into National Brotherhood of Student Musicians | Company

The piano students of Therese Bertrand, director of Billings’ Music Potpourri, recently took part in the National Guild auditions.

The American College of Musicians/National Guild of Piano Teachers is the largest nonprofit organization of piano teachers and students in the world. The primary function is to establish specific, high-level goals and awards – in non-competitive auditions – for students of all skill levels, from the earliest beginner to the gifted prodigy. All students participated in National Guild auditions in memorized classifications:

A piece interpreting an engagement: Alexandra Pavlovich

Two or three pieces performed locally: Olivia Barker, Savannah Pavlovich, Ralston Yurko

Four District Pieces: Leighton Burkett, Lily Mercier

10 National Performance Coins: Liz Bradshaw, William Bradshaw, Elizabeth Prindle, Lorelei Rahlf

International interpretation of 15 pieces: Soren Rahlf

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All of the students’ performances qualified them for membership in the National Brotherhood of Student Musicians (Student Division of the American College of Musicians).

The students were judged by Ruth Plesner of Hamilton Montana. Ruth Plesner grew up in a musical family in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she took piano lessons. Plesner, a nationally certified music teacher by the National Association of Music Teachers, has taught piano and auditioned for the National Guild for the past 23 years. She continued her musical training by studying private piano and post-baccalaureate music lessons at the University of Montana and Valley City State University in North Dakota. Through the Montana State Music Teachers Association, Ruth served as Chair of Certification and is currently Chair of the Education Committee. She was the leader of the IMTF (Independent Music Teachers’ Forum) for several years and is an active member of the Missoula Music Teachers Association.