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(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)August 6, 2008

(MAHWAH) – Members of three of Ramapo College’s singing groups–CantaNOVA, Skylark and Take Twelve–brought home top honors this summer from the International Festival of Academic Choirs in Prague, the Czech Republic.

The Ramapo College contingent was the only American groups invited to the festival.  The competition included 17 choirs from South Africa, China, Russia, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic.

This was the first time any Ramapo choirs have entered an international competition  “I have an enthusiastic core of singers that wanted the opportunities a European tour and competition would bring,” said Dr. Lisa Lutter, assistant professor of vocal performance and director of the choirs.  The trip was funded by a grant from the Ramapo College Foundation and the Office of the Provost.

Ramapo’s three groups won medals in each competition category they entered.  CantaNOVA won a bronze medal and Skylark a silver in the A Cappella category; CantaNOVA and Skylark each won a silver medal in the Folklore category; CantaNOVA won a silver medal in the World Music category; Skylark won a silver medal in the Jazz category and Take Twelve won a gold medal in the American Songbook category.

Students participating in the competition included:

Jess Abrams, Wyckoff, NJ
Matthew Armenti, Sewaren, NJ
Caitlin Carey, Ramsey, NJ
Gina Cirillo, Leonia, NJ
Ashley Cohen, Emerson, NJ
David Dabney, Fair Lawn, NJ
Gabriella DeCandia, Ridgewood, NJ
Annie Elizabeth Davis, Ramsey, NJ
Angela Dorstek, Fair Haven, NJ
Felicia Donatiello, Old Bridge, NJ
Gregory Elfers, Teaneck, NJ
Kathryn Galvin, Saddle Brook, NJ
Aimee Greenspan, Haskel, NJ
Alex Jones, Wayne, NJ
Roberta Koo, Kearny, NJ
Anne Liberman, Rockaway, NJ

Tom Mazzarella, Park Ridge, NJ
Eric Mendelsohn, Ringwood, NJ
Erin Messina, Jackson, NJ
Jessica Mott, Glen Rock, NJ
Jenna Myers, Middlesex, NJ
Brielle Ocot, Clifton, NJ
Marjorie Polunas, Wall, NJ
Adam Posluszny, Manasquan, NJ
Keri Rand, Sussex, NJ
Nicole Scaro, Ridgewood, NJ
Amanda Sweatlock, Washintgon Township, NJ
Sarah Warren, Belle Mead, NJ
Brittney Watson, Flemington, NJ
Andreas Winawer-Wetzel, Princeton, NJ
Melissa Woods, Toms River, NJ
Matt Young, Paterson, NJ

Karl Cepeda, Lori D. Mendez and Jimmy Santos, all of Guam, traveled with the group and also performed.

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Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice, has been named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by CollegesofDistinction.com, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on Niche.com, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a post-master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice.

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