IF YOU GO
What: "From the Top" concert.
When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday.
Where: Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St.
Admission: $20-$40 plus fees; additional $25 for after-show reception with artists.
Local musicians John Burton and Thomas West are among a handful of talented teenagers who will be featured Thursday evening when "From the Top" tapes in the Tivoli Theatre.
"From the Top" is National Public Radio's showcase for rising talents ages 8-18, hosted by Christopher O'Riley. The popular NPR program, which airs on Sunday afternoons, features performances and stories of young classical musicians across the country.
The Chattanooga taping is being hosted by Southern Adventist University's WSMC radio station in honor of its 50th anniversary. The public is invited to attend the taping to hear these young musicians.
Thomas West is a 16-year-old, bass vocalist who attends McCallie School. He is the son of Tom and Jennifer West of Lookout Mountain.
John Burton is a 17-year-old trumpeter who attends Walker Valley High School. He is the son of Mike and Fredda Burton of Cleveland, Tenn.
John said he will perform Fantasie in E-Flat for Trumpet and Piano by Joseph Barat at the taping. It was selected for him by the NPR staff after hearing his audition tape, he said.
The Walker Valley junior said the piece starts with a fanfare, then goes into a lyrical melody that is reprised in the middle.
"The composer plays with the melody in many different styles," he said.
John said he learned to play trumpet in his middle-school band program. He chose the horn because his uncle and brother also played trumpet. In six years, his talent and technical prowess have propelled him to first chair in his high school band, first chair in the Chattanooga Symphony Youth Orchestra and co-principal trumpet in this year's All-State Orchestra.
Last year, he was among 29 semifinalists across the country selected for the National Trumpet Competition in Fairfax, Va. Next month, he will be in the International Trumpet Guild Competition in Columbus, Ga.
Also playing for Thursday's taping will be Jerry Feng, a 16-year-old pianist from Knoxville; Alina Ming Kobialka, a 15-year-old violinist from San Francisco; and the Camerton String Quartet from the preparatory program of Community Music School of Webster University in St. Louis.
The program taped Thursday night will air on WSMC Classical 90.5 on Sunday, June 17, at 2 p.m., and Tuesday, June 19, at 10 a.m., according to Lucas Patterson, Southern Adventist University's media relations spokesman.
Susan Palmer Pierce is a reporter and columnist in the Life department. She began her journalism career as a summer employee 1972 for the News Free Press, typing bridal announcements and photo captions. She became a full-time employee in 1980, working her way up to feature writer, then special sections editor, then Lifestyle editor in 1995 until the merge of the NFP and Times in 1999. She was honored with the 2007 Chattanooga Woman of ...