Bahamas Music Academy (BMA) student Alexis Godet claimed the Nassau Music Society’s 52nd Season Violin Competition to win an Otto Violin, while Shadelle Major was the Audience Choice Award winner. Major took home a 12-month subscription to SmartPractice, plus violin gear.
Godet’s winning performance was Vivaldi, Concerto in A Minor, 1st Movement. Major performed Brahms, Sonatensatz.
Both young ladies were said to have impressed the judges and the audience with their passionate performances and their commitment to music and the violin.
Godet, an 11th grade student at St. Augustine’s College, learnt of the competition from her BMA teacher and said initially she was nervous about entering, not thinking she had enough time to prepare the pieces she needed.
“My professor, Sydney Campbell, is a professional violinist and conductor, so thankfully he knew how to prepare me for the competition. Practice was arduous, and many times I got frustrated, especially with the fast fingering in ‘En Mi Menor, Mi Menor Conga’. Through the encouragement of my parents and professor, I was able to push through and practice harder than I ever had in my life.”
For the first round of the competition, Godet said she did not have a pianist, which she said made her nervous as to whether it would affect her chance at being selected as a finalist.
“Luckily, it did not, and I was able to move on to the second and final round. However, I hit a roadblock after the first round – my wrist, which has a long history of pain and numbness due to me playing the violin, started acting up again. Due to this, I did not practice at all over the Christmas break. When classes resumed again, I was terribly rusty and I had to put in more work than I had in the first round into practice.”
Godet said she listened to “Concerto in A Minor” by Antonio Vivaldi until she was sick of it and could sing it by memory.
“I practiced passages in the piece until my hands could remember each note … until I could practically feel my strings under my fingers, even when I was not playing. My fingers blistered badly and even now I have imprints and grooves on my fingertips. Fortunately, my hard work paid off!”
Godet said she was overjoyed when she found out she had won.
“I always doubted my abilities, so winning was the validation I needed. Not only did I prove to myself that I could do it, but I proved to my family, friends, and even people who didn’t know me that violin is something I’m extremely passionate about and dedicated to. I am thankful for the opportunity to show my skills and push myself beyond what I thought I could do. I believe it really takes a competition to bring out the best in someone, and that applies to anything. Even if you don’t believe in yourself, keep on trying and you will surpass what you thought were your limits.”