Current Season Winners

Jason Browne, Trumpet

Jessica Lee, Cellist

Jason Browne, our instrumentalist winner from League City, Texas will play the Allegro movement from Trumpet Concerto in Eb by Johann Neruda.

Jennifer Magill, mezzo-soprano

Mezzo-soprano Jennifer Magill, an SMU student from League City, Texas will sing Je veux vivre, an aria from the opera Romeo and Juliette by Charles Gounod.

Past Winners

Jessica Lee, Violoncello

Jessica Lee, Cellist

Jessica Lee is the daughter of two wonderful teachers and she has three sisters. She started her musical journey on violin at a young age and quickly switched to cello at 8 years old after seeing her older sister play cello. Jessica’s early childhood years were in San Antonio and then her family moved to Kerrville where she attended Tivy High School, ran cross country and track, and participated in All-Region and All-State orchestras. Jessica Lee received her Bachelor of Arts in music and political science from Bard College at Simon’s Rock in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. She also studied abroad in Peru for two summers where she learned Spanish and volunteered with nonprofits and orphanages. Jessica’s work with nonprofits and community service inspired her to become a teacher and in 2010, she returned to Texas to earn her Texas teaching certificate.

Jessica Lee was a public school orchestra teacher for 6 years and adjunct faculty of Schreiner University in Kerrville for two years. Jessica lives in San Antonio where she is continuing her cello studies with San Antonio Symphony cellists Ryan Murphy and Holgen Gjoni and she will be auditioning for graduate programs in music performance this fall. Jessica Lee is currently principal cellist of Symphony of the Hills based in Kerrville at the Cailloux Theater, and she has been a member of this orchestra for over ten years. She enjoys playing with Symphony of the Hills because it is a local symphony comprised of professional musicians, passionate music educators, and dedicated Kerrville residents, bringing great works of music to the families and communities of the Texas Hill Country.

Christina Reeves-Shull, Soprano

Growing up in a musical household, my mother insisted that all her children know how to play the piano and at least one other musical instrument. And, true to form, my older brother and sister not only did just that but added voice as well. Likewise, I was a member of school choirs all through primary and secondary school and learned to play the piano. However, rather than continue to study music as my life’s work like my siblings, I chose to pursue Astrophysics (Dad was an engineer, after all). So, in addition to all the Physics and Math courses I took in my first two years of college at Oklahoma City University and the University of Oklahoma, I also took voice lessons and performed in University Choirs. Unfortunately, the Astrophysics coursework began to take more time and I eventually stopped singing except for occasional Church Choir performances.

I discovered that, although I may had given up on most of my music, music had not given up on me. Although the Physics Coordinator at Cedar Valley College (CVC) for the past 12 years, I began, about four years ago, missing music in my life – radio just wasn’t cutting it! Around the same time, Dr. Kathryn Brown started the CVC Community Chorus. I worked up the courage to audition, was accepted as a member, and am now in my fourth year as a member of this chorus. Apparently, though, being in chorus wasn’t the end of music’s hold on me – this past summer I auditioned for the Community Concerto and Aria Competition (CCAC) and was chosen as the 2017 Aria Grand Prize winner. My mother, now deceased, would be proud – “I will sing to the Lord, for He has been good to me.” Psalms 13:6

Continue to the Guidelines