The Cincinnati Arts Affiliation’s 2021 Overture Awards will announce the winners

The Cincinnati Arts Association has announced the winners of their Overture Awards competition. Due to the effects of the pandemic, all three rounds of the competition took place virtually and culminated in an online announcement and a celebration on Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. The competition awarded $ 2,000 for education and training to winners in six art disciplines and $ 750 to each of eighteen runner-ups.

The Overture Awards recognize, promote, and reward excellence in the arts among tri-state students in grades 9 through 12 and is the largest solo art competition in the region. Students are nominated by their schools and / or private studios to compete in one of six disciplines: creative writing, dance, instrumental music, theater, visual arts, and vocal music. There are three levels of competition: regional, semi-final and final.

The Overture Awards were launched in 1996 in their twenty-fifth year by the Cinergy Foundation (now Duke Energy) and Class 19 of Leadership Cincinnati (a program of the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber). The Overture Awards are funded and administered by the Cincinnati Arts Association, which operates and administers the Aronoff Center and Music Hall. The Overture Awards also draw on hundreds of community volunteers to help raise funds, evaluate and manage the competitions, and promote the program.

The overture prizes are donated by the Otto M. Budig Family Foundation.

Overture Awards for Sponsors: TriHealth; The Eleanora CU Alms Trust, Fifth Third Bank, Trustee; Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc .; Otto M. Budig Family Foundation; Cincinnati Summer Fair

Scholarship Sponsors: Arthur Murray – Cincinnati, Douglas Beal, Doreen Beatrice, Bonita Brockert, Brandon Etheridge, Maura Garuccio, Jozsef Parragh, Pebble Creek Group, Ballroom Phoenix Rising, Summerfair Cincinnati, Josh Tilford, Financial Fund Western & Southern, William O. Purdy Jr. Foundation

2021 Overture Awards winners:

CREATIVE WRITING: Savannah Gripshover, Grade 11, Conner Senior High School

HOMETOWN: Hebron, KY – Savannah Gripshover’s earliest memories involve creating her own stories and characters to write about. She is currently in the group of young writers at her school and is engaged in various projects, mainly poetry and novels. She hopes to pursue a career in the arts and spend her life appreciating them.

DANCE: Braylan Enscoe, 11th Grade, Laurel Springs School / Right on Broadway

HOME TOWN: Cincinnati, OH – Braylan trains and teaches on Just Off Broadway, where she is a member of the nationally recognized performance team. She has won numerous regional and national dance awards, performed Clara in The Nutcracker and starred in the short film Moving Henry, which premiered at the Dance Film Festival. Braylan’s plans for the future include attending college in California or New York while studying dance.

INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC: Andrew Yang, 12th grade, Seven Hills School / Won-Bim Yim

HOMETOWN: Cincinnati, OH – Violinist Andrew Yang is a senior at Seven Hills School. He was concertmaster of the Ohio All-State Orchestra and the Cincinnati Symphony Youth Philharmonic Orchestra. Andrew is also a two-time winner of the National YoungArts, a finalist of the MTNA National Competition and a participant in the 9th Louis Spohr International Competition for Young Violinists.

THEATER: Claire Northcut, 12th grade, William Mason High School / Music Center

HOMETOWN: Mason, OH – Claire Northcut is a senior at William Mason High School and is excited to be in the finals. She has been performing since she was six and plans to study musical theater in college. She wants to thank her friends and family for their never-ending love and support!

VISUAL ART: Sydney Luebbe, 12th grade, Lakota West High School

HOME TOWN: Liberty Township, OH – Sydney Luebbe was born and raised in Liberty Township, Ohio. She was introduced to the arts at a young age by her uncle who is an architect. She followed in his footsteps and developed a passion for science, math and the arts. Despite her challenging academic activities, she found solace in expression through art.

VOCAL MUSIC: Mary Wilkens, 12th grade, Ursuline Academy / Melody Wallace

HOMETOWN: Cincinnati, OH – Mary performed at a young age and participates in Ursuline and St. Xavier’s theater programs. When Mary is not on stage, she plays for Ursuline, sings in her church choir and sews costumes. Mary is a member of the National Honor Society and hopes to be a speech pathologist for vocalists.

The finalists of the Overture Awards 2021:


  • Alexandra Frohn, 12th grade, Seven Hills School
  • Savannah Gripshover, 11th grade, Conner Senior High School
  • Jenny Hu, 11th grade, Seven Hills School
  • Deeya Prakash, 11th grade, Sycamore High School


· Braylan Enscoe, 11th Grade, Laurel Springs School / Right on Broadway

· Gracie Harper, 12th grade, Anderson High School / The Studio for Dance

· Trista Mullenix, Grade 10, Creative and Performing Arts School / right on Broadway

· Emi Tao, 12th grade, William Mason High School / Bing Yang Chinese Performing Arts Center


Ashley Cai, 10th grade, William Mason High School / Benita Tse Leung

· Cole Kubesch, 12th grade, Sycamore High School

· Nicholas Wolfe, 12th grade, Saint Xavier High School / Leung Studios

· Andrew Yang, 12th grade, Seven Hills School / Won-Bim Yim


Benjamin Crane, Grade 11, Homeschool / Lincoln Chapman Studio

· Claire Northcut, 12th grade, William Mason High School / Music Center

· Bella Randle, 11th grade, Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy / Center for Musical Arts

· Madeline Ritter, 12th grade, School of Creative and Performing Arts / Cincinnati Conservatory MTI


· Sydney Luebbe, 12th grade, Lakota West High School / Stephanie Gauer

· Marialinda Roblero, 12th grade, Lakota West High School / Stephanie Gauer

· Nathan Tyler, 12th grade, Sycamore High School

· Tiya Yempati, 12th grade, William Mason High School


Claire Hardek, 11th grade, Indian Hill School / Dr. Kimberly Buczek, Cincinnati Academy of Performing Arts

· Ella Vaughn, 10th grade, Walnut Hills High School / Karl Resnik, Music Arts Center

· Mary Wilkens, 11th grade, Ursuline Academy / Melody Wallace

Maria Zierolf, 12th grade, Mount Notre Dame High School / Lincoln Chapman, Musical Arts Center

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