Patch Whiz Kid/Team/Club of the Week: Eighth grade student Allegra Whiting
Whiz Kid's School/Church/Community Center: Grover Cleveland Middle School, Caldwell
Whiz Kid's Accomplishment: The two-time winner of the National Young Musicians Showcase Competition, member of North Jersey School Music Association's 2011 Junior High School Region-1 honors music ensembles and 2009 first place winner of the New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra’s Young Artist Baroque Concerto Competition, the talented middle school student recently auditioned for the pre-college programs at Juilliard and the Manhattan School of Music.
Whiz Kid's Key to Awesomeness: When you are the daughter of a violinist, taking up a string instrument comes with a bit of added pressure. But, eighth grader Allegra Whiting has shown that a little pressure is not necessarily a bad thing.
Already an accomplished cellist, Whiting began studying music with Mamie Kaller at the age of five. In 2009, she was selected to play in a master class for the British cellist Steven Isserlis, and participated in a workshop and performance of the Bach Goldberg Variations with American cellist Matt Haimovitz.
A two-time winner of the National Young Musicians Showcase Competition, Whiting has performed twice at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, and was the winner of the String Division of the Florence Boughton Competition for Young Artists, sponsored by the MacDowell Club of Mountain Lakes. Whiting was named a winner of the Frank and Lydia Bergen Scholarship Concerto Auditions, has played with the New Jersey Youth Symphony for four years and was accepted into the 2010 Regions 1 Orchestra and NJ All State Orchestra.
At school, Whiting plays flute in the school band, cello in the orchestra sings for the chorus, and is a member of the school’s Con Brio chamber music ensemble.
In addition to her musical pursuits, Whiting is a Girl Scout Silver Award candidate, an award that represents a girl's accomplishments in scouting as well as her community. The first four requirements of the Girl Scout Silver Award help girls build skills, explore careers, gain leadership skills, and make a commitment to self-improvement. To earn the award, Whiting, along with some talented cellist friends, formed A Cello Rando, organizing concerts at nursing homes, libraries, hospitals and more.
Next year, this Whiz Kid, who has also played softball and lacrosse, is looking forward to joining the high school tennis team and hopes to join the Venture Sports scout group to tackle backpacking, whitewater rafting, and more.
As the young artist waits to hear the results of her recent auditions, she is already planning for the future. What is left for this amazing cellist to do? “I want to play with Yo-Yo Ma!”