Two Mustangs have opportunity to play with a pro

Summerlin Schlemmer – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Two LRHS students, senior Kyle Khuc and freshman Samantha Zappala, have received a major keyboard opportunity.

LRHS senior Kyle Khuc looks forward to auditioning for Jim Brickman

These Mustangs will be performing at the Brickman/Pritchard Piano Festival on Oct. 1, in Sarasota at Pritchards Pianos store.

The winner of the festival will be featured as a special guest with Jim Brickman  during Brickman’s concert on Nov. 29 at The Van Wezel Performing Arts hall.

Brickman is a songwriter and pianist of pop and adult contemporary music.

At the festival, Brickman will provide helpful comments to further develop the students’ musicianship and increase their confidence.

Students will be judged based on their technique, rhythm, interpretation, and other performance factors.

Mustangs freshman Samantha Zappala is excited about her opportunity

Zappala said, “My piano teacher outside of school got me into this contest. I am kind of nervous but overall really excited for this opportunity.”

Zappala is in Keyboard 4 Honors and has been playing piano for seven years now.

Khuc said, “Mrs. Lester (LRHS keyboard teacher Rebekah Lester) told me about this opportunity and I thought it was a really good idea. Since Brickman is a fairly well known pianist, I am more nervous about playing one of his pieces.”

Khuc has been playing the piano since sixth grade and is in Keyboard 3. He is even a composer himself and will share a piece of his music to Brickman.

Lester expressed her excitement for the students.

“I am proud that our students chose to compete in the piano festival,” she said. “This competition was very short notice, but the students are ready.” She also included that it is just an honor to play in front of Brickman himself.

Around 15 students from around the state of Florida will join the Mustangs in the competition.