Students received their certificates and awards at the Music Showcase spring recital last month. Top row: River Yebba and Bryson Moore. Bottom row: Saanvi Chinthamaneni and Tyler Smith.

Despite the pandemic with social distancing, Music Showcase hosted its 14th annual International Piano Guild in May 2021 virtually. More than 20 pianists from around the area participated in the annual closed juried event, including six from Music Showcase. They submitted their auditions online to a judge who scored their performances.

The International Piano Guild holds yearly auditions around the world with music professionals grading students on accuracy, continuity, phrasing, pedaling, dynamics, rhythm, tempo, tone, interpretation, style and technique. The audition, open for students of all levels, is a yearly event at Music Showcase. Students have to memorize and play scales and songs, sometimes as many as 10 each.

“The guild’s purpose is to encourage growth and enjoyment of the piano,” said Debprad Evans of Music Showcase and FAOPA. “Auditioning students receive the prestige of becoming members of the guild for a year and report cards. Students can also receive community service credit through the public school system and academic accreditation on college applications and resumes.”

Among the Music Showcase students, Bryson Moore of Brandon received the highest score in the state level. Out of 35 points, he received 33. The 14-year-old has been playing the piano for five years. He graduated from Winthrop Charter Academy and will now be going into high school. He enjoys online gaming with his friends, swimming and trail riding.

Also, being judged at the state level was Saanvi Chinthamaneni. The 11-year-old Valrico girl scored a 31 and has played piano for two and a half years. She is moving on from Lithia Springs Elementary School and enjoys singing, swimming, skating and baking.

Faith Hoyte, age 13, auditioned at the state level. She is from Thonotosassa and attends Freedom Project Academy and says music is fun. River Yebba, age 13, has played piano for five years. She was a state candidate and goes to Mulrennan Middle School and says music is peaceful.

Noah Hoyte, age 13, has played piano for five years. He was judged at the district level. Noah of Thonotosassa attends Freedom Project Academy and enjoys playing piano at his church. Tyler Smith, age 13, was also a district candidate and has played for five years. He is homeschooled and lives in Riverview. He likes the rhythm of music.

Guild teacher Jean Hackley says students get to perform at a higher level and it’s a great way for students to be recognized for their hard work and achievements and they can see how they can improve.

For more information, call Music Showcase at 685-5998 or email

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