High school student, Lauren Senden, North Mankato, who is a senior, has won first prize in the prestigious Schmidt Vocal Competition, a singing competition for sophomore, junior, and senior high school singers that presents cash awards to more than 150 people annually. The competition took place at the University of Minnesota on April 27. Lauren Senden was awarded $2,500 for her performance of “L’été” by Cécile Chaminade.

“Congratulations to Lauren Senden and the many other talented singers who participated in this year’s Schmidt Vocal Competition,” said Ben Smolder, Director of the Schmidt Vocal Competition. “These students work hard to practice and prepare for the competition. We’re committed to helping them pursue their passion. The Schmidt Vocal Competition offers students the opportunity to perform in front of live audiences, receive invaluable instruction from world-renowned artists and professionals, and connect with mentors and experienced singers to explore a career in classical singing.”


“I was honored to participate in the Schmidt Vocal Competition this weekend,” said first prize winner, Lauren Senden. “I learned a great deal from the feedback I received and by watching other talented artists perform. The master class reminded me that we, as performing artists, must always be aware of what we wish to communicate with our audience before we make our music. I focused on grounding my performance in the message I wanted to share and let the music help me tell this story. I love the pieces I sang this year and was incredibly honored to receive this award. The prize money will be assisting me with paying my college tuition. Thank you to the Schmidt Foundation for all you have done to help me grow as a performer and for your continued support of young singers.”



About Schmidt Vocal Competition

The Schmidt Vocal Competition has impacted the lives of thousands of young students over the past two decades, offering awards, scholarship and educational experiences for more than 150 students annually. The Schmidt Vocal Competition is held annually in 16 locations throughout the U.S. in partnership with regional colleges and universities and is open to sophomore, junior and senior high school singers. Competitors perform in front of a live audience in two rounds and participate in educational master classes with some of today’s most renowned professionals between the preliminary and final rounds.

Schmidt Competition participants have gone on to gain entrance into the world’s finest music schools and include winners of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, the George London Competition, the National Association of Teachers of Singing Artist Competition, Classical Singer, and the National Opera Association Award. The Schmidt Vocal Competition is funded by the William E. Schmidt Foundation, which encourages aspiring young singers to pursue their passion in vocal arts and provides support and inspiration to future generations of singers.


About Lauren Senden

Lauren Senden is a senior at Mankato East High School and studies voice with Dr. Stephanie Thorpe. This fall, Lauren will be attending Baldwin Wallace University to pursue a Bachelor of Music in Musical Theatre. She is grateful to her family for their constant love, support, and prayers.