Wednesday, December 25, 2013

New York Times Blog: 'Sphinx Awards Highlight Promise Among Young Musicians'

Damien Sneed

Carla Dirlikov

Pedrito Martinez
(Copyright Martin Cohen/

The New York Times Blog
December 24, 2013

Sphinx Awards Highlight Promise Among Young Musicians

The Sphinx Organization, a national training program devoted to getting black and Hispanic students involved in classical music performance, announced the winners of its 2014 artist scholarships on Tuesday. The awards, for musicians in the early stages of their careers who demonstrate, as Sphinx puts it, “artistic excellence, outstanding work ethic, a spirit of determination and great potential for leadership,” include a $50,000 career-development scholarship and the organization’s Medal of Excellence.
The winners are Damien Sneed, a pianist, organist, composer and producer from Augusta, Ga., who made his conducting debut in 2008, leading the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and a 150-voice choir in the premiere of Wynton Marsalis’s “Abyssinian Mass”; Carla Dirlikov, a mezzo-soprano of Bulgarian and Mexican descent, who in addition to her opera and concert engagements, teaches orphaned and impoverished students in Mexico; and Pedro Pablo Martinez, a Cuban percussionist who leads the Pedrito Martinez Group.

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