St. Mary's Acad. (Downtown)
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From left. Top row - Dolores Fritzsche, Larissa Banitt. Bottom row - Iris Cohn, Grace Hermes, Sydney Wagner, Madison Wray
From left. Top row - Dolores Fritzsche, Larissa Banitt. Bottom row - Iris Cohn, Grace Hermes, Sydney Wagner, Madison Wray
Six St. Mary's Academy students win first place in Oregon Music Educators Association District Championships (Photo) - 02/27/15
Portland, Ore. - Six St. Mary's Academy students took first place in the District 15 Oregon Music Educators Association (OMEA) Solo and Ensemble competition on February 21 at Aloha High School. These six students were among 24 other talented singers and instrumentalists competing from St. Mary's. The private, Catholic all-girls high school was represented by vocal solo entries in the soprano, mezzo-soprano and alto categories as well as a women's vocal ensemble. Instrumental solos by St. Mary's students included oboe, flute, violin and viola as well as woodwind and string ensembles.

"We are very proud of all of our students' performances, the musical skills they demonstrated and their bravery in performing solo or in small groups in front of an adjudicator," said Kathy Briggs, St. Mary's Academy's director of choral music.

St. Mary's senior Madison Wray was named the district champion in the mezzo-soprano category. Freshman Dolores Fritzsche was named the district champion in the oboe category. Sophomores Sydney Wagner, Grace Hermes, Iris Cohn and senior Larissa Banitt were named district champions in the women's ensemble category. This was the first year that ensembles were given the opportunity to advance to the state competition. In the past, ensembles have performed at the district competition for comments only.

"It's really cool to be one of the first district champions ever in the vocal ensemble division. It was a lot of fun working with my fellow ensemble members to put together our performance piece and I know we will be working hard to make it even better for state," said sophomore Iris Cohn.

As district champions these young women will advance to perform and compete in the Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) State Solo and Ensemble Championships in May.

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St. Mary's Academy is a Catholic high school for young women located in the heart of downtown Portland that provides a challenging college-preparatory education with a focus on developing the whole person. Founded in 1859 by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, St. Mary's Academy is Oregon's oldest continuously operating secondary school and offers a supportive learning environment to a diverse student body from more than 35 cities in urban, suburban and rural Oregon and Southwest Washington. For more information about St. Mary's Academy, please visit www.stmaryspdx.org.
St. Mary's Academy senior Mary Root was awarded a Gold Key for her artwork and a Silver Key for her portfolio.
St. Mary's Academy senior Mary Root was awarded a Gold Key for her artwork and a Silver Key for her portfolio.
St. Mary's Academy students win 97 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards (Photo) - 02/06/15
Fifty St. Mary's Academy students have been recognized as regional Scholastic Art and Writing Award winners. Nineteen students received 24 regional Scholastic Writing Awards and 31 students received a record number of 73 regional Scholastic Art Awards. The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards have recognized the vision, ingenuity and talent of youth across the country and provided opportunities for creative teens to be celebrated since its founding in 1923.

"These awards celebrate the hearts of our students and the strength of their stories and creativity. They also affirm the rigor of our diverse writing and arts programs. The Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary committed our school to the arts as an important component of students' development and that mission is clearly thriving," said St. Mary's Academy Principal Kelli Clark.

Forty-five students entered more than 200 individual art pieces and four senior portfolios to the Scholastic Art Awards. Of these submissions a record-breaking 73 pieces received awards -16 Gold Keys, 25 Silver Keys, 31 Honorable Mentions and one Silver Key portfolio. The best works submitted to local programs are awarded Gold Keys. Gold Keys are automatically considered for national-level recognition

"The Scholastic Art Awards are a wonderful avenue for teen artists to be recognized outside the classroom. It often is the catalyst to help them reach for higher education in the arts and ultimately contribute their creativity to the world," said St. Mary's art teacher Kathy Mitchell '64.

St. Mary's participated in the Scholastic Writing Award's West Region at Large which includes California, Colorado, Hawaii, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. Of the St. Mary's students recognized for their writing, seven students were awarded Gold Keys, seven students were awarded Silver Keys and nine students received Honorable Mention.

"This is truly a tribute to the writing community we have established at St. Mary's Academy and the creative nourishment our teachers provide," said English teacher, Sara Salvi '71.

In addition, St. Mary's Academy's student publication, Escribe Maria, won a First Place Award from the American Scholastic Press Association's annual magazine competition. Entries are evaluated on the criteria of content coverage, organization, design, presentation and creativity. Escribe Maria, which features both creative writing and art, was one of two such publications in Oregon to receive this award.

Scholastic Writing Award Winners:
Larissa Banitt: Gold Key
Maya Bennett: Gold Key, Honorable Mention
Annah Burt: Gold Key, Silver Key
Ursula Clausing-Hufford: Gold Key
Zoe Felix: Silver Key, Honorable Mention
Devon Fenesy: Gold Key
Alicia Hannigan: Honorable Mention
Grace Hermes: Silver Key
Umi Kumar: Honorable Mention
Samantha Leahy: Honorable Mention
Marley Lopez: Honorable Mention
Clare McLeod: Honorable Mention
Kate Samuels: Gold Key
Somers Smith: Silver Key, Honorable Mention
Kaitee Steiert: Silver Key
Ashley Stiles: Silver Key
Miriam Thielman: Gold Key
Bethan Tyler: Two Honorable Mentions
Katie Woodhouse: Silver Key

Scholastic Art Award Winners:
Sonja Bales: Gold Key, Two Silver Keys, Three Honorable Mentions
Maya Banitt: Silver Key, Honorable Mention
Lumi Barron: Three Gold Keys, Three Silver Keys, Two Honorable Mentions
Maya Bennett: Silver Key
Kenley Borgerson: Gold Key
Tanis Campbell: Silver Key
Claire Coleman: Two Gold Keys
Nico Conahan: Two Silver Keys
Karlene Curtin: Two Silver Keys
Jean Elliott: Silver Key, Honorable Mention
Miranda Field-Martin: Three Honorable Mentions
Margot Flynn: Gold Key
Rose Gibian: Gold Key, Honorable Mention
Malia Hee: Silver Key
Christina Jackson: Gold Key, Four Honorable Mentions
Clare Lagomarsino: Gold Key, Silver Key
Annie Lee: Two Honorable Mentions
Clare McLeod: Honorable Mention
Zabelle Messick: Honorable Mention
Bernadette Phan: Honorable Mention
Mary Root: Gold Key, Silver portfolio
Kendra Siebert: Gold Key, Three Silver Keys, Two Honorable Mentions
Sydney Stark: Honorable Mention
Annie Tamashiro: Three Silver Keys
Mia Truman: Silver Key, Two Honorable Mentions
McKenzie Vanko: Gold Key, Honorable Mention
Dylan Wells: Silver Key
Ana Wilder: Honorable Mention
Devyn Wilson: Gold Key, Silver Key
Phoebe Woofter: Gold Key, Silver Key, Two Honorable Mentions
Catherine Wright: Silver Key, Honorable Mention

# # #

St. Mary's Academy is a Catholic high school for young women located in the heart of downtown Portland that provides a challenging college-preparatory education with a focus on developing the whole person. Founded in 1859 by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, St. Mary's Academy is Oregon's oldest continuously operating secondary school and offers a supportive learning environment to a diverse student body from more than 35 cities in urban, suburban and rural Oregon and Southwest Washington. For more information about St. Mary's Academy, please visit www.stmaryspdx.org.