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State's Top Musicians Compete at OMTA at OCU
More than 2,000 competitors convened on Oklahoma City University for the largest-ever gathering of the Oklahoma Music Teachers Association’s State Achievement Auditions. Musicians from kindergarten through 12th grade representing communities from Guymon to Idabel, Pryor to Lawton qualified to compete at the state level by earning top rankings in their home districts. Performances were held in the Bass Music Center May 16-17 from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday. “It’s an event that we and the students will feel so honored in which to participate,” said Auda Marie Thomas, past president of OMTA currently in her 35th consecutive year as audition chair. “To be in one building, back on the OCU campus, is a return to where we started.” Oklahoma City University was home to Professor Clarence Burg, elected first president of OMTA in 1929. This year, 63 Oklahoma seniors will receive the Clarence Burg Award for competing at the state level for all four years of high school. “He believed that music should be part of every child’s life and that every child should have the chance to excel in music,” she said of her former teacher. “He would be very proud today.” Thomas said 2,083 students and 216 teachers registered for the event. Piano is the most popular of the OMTA disciplines, which also include voice, woodwind, strings, and harp. The Oklahoma Music Teachers Association is an affiliate of the Music Teachers National Association. Its purpose is to further the art of music and to promote the growth and professional development of its members by providing programs that encourage and support teaching, performance, composition and research. On May 29-31, the Bass School hosted the 79th annual state conference for teacher members of the OMTA. For more information, visit