NDSU alumna mezzo-soprano Clara (Presser) Osowski, BMUS ’08, was awarded the second prize award and 7,500 Euro in the 2017 Das Lied International Song Competition, held March 1-4 in Heidelberg, Germany. She was accompanied by Tyler Wottrich, assistant professor of piano at NDSU’s Challey School of Music.
Osowski was the only American and the only woman to take a top vocal prize at the competition, and she is the first American to be a prize winner since the competition began in 2009. The top three winners also have the opportunity to perform concerts in London, Madrid and again in Heidelberg at the “Heidelberger Frühling” music festival in April.
She is an award-winning soloist and chamber musician who performs throughout the United States and Europe. Earlier in 2017, she won the Saengerbund Awards German Vocal Competition in Houston. She was a finalist in the 2015 Das Lied competition. She sings with the Rose Ensemble and Seraphic Fire, internationally touring vocal ensembles.
Osowski is co-founder and associate artistic director of the annual Source Song Festival in Minneapolis. She is a native of Carrington, North Dakota.
Wottrich developed the graduate collaborative piano program at NDSU’s Challey School of Music and teaches applied piano as well as music theory and analysis courses. His career spans a broad spectrum of musical genres, including solo piano, chamber music, ballet, opera and gospel. He is an alumnus of Ensemble ACJW, a program of Carnegie Hall, the Juilliard School, the Weill Music Institute and the New York City Department of Education. He performs frequently in such venues as Carnegie's Zankel and Weill Halls and the Juilliard School. Wottrich received the 2011 Emerson Quartet's Ackerman Prize for chamber music, and is the founder and artistic director of the annual NDSU Chamber Music Festival.
Wottrich and Osowski are scheduled to perform in Bach’s “St. John Passion” April 30 at 2 p.m., at First Lutheran Church, Fargo, presented by the Challey School of Music.
The concert features the NDSU Concert Choir, guest soloists and the Baroque Festival Orchestra under the direction of Jo Ann Miller. A recital of the duo’s Das Lied performances is planned for late April at NDSU’s Beckwith Recital Hall, with details to be announced. In addition, Wottrich will perform a solo faculty recital on Thursday, March 9, at 7:30 p.m. in Beckwith Recital Hall.
More than 100 singers applied to the Das Lied competition and 26 vocalists, along with accompanists, were accepted by juried audition to perform at the 2017 event. Finalist performances from the competition are available online.
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