Solo Competition

The James W. Simmons Solo Competition
The Rev. Dr. Genevieve Murphy Scholarship
for Young Musicians

The competition is named for the 6th director of the Charlottesville Municipal Band, Mr. James W. Simmons, who began playing in the band in 1946 and was appointed its Music Director in 1980. During his 26-year tenure, the band increased in both membership and musicianship, playing many concerts in Charlottesville and in surrounding communities and across the state, attracting overflow audiences everywhere it played. He retired on December 31, 2006, and conducted his final program on April 24, 2007.

The scholarship is named in honor of its benefactor and Municipal Band of Charlottesville supporter, the Reverend Dr. Genevieve Murphy, whose generous legacy donation underwrites this annual tradition that showcases the finest young musicians and encourages them to pursue higher education in the arts.


One winner will be announced on our website within seven days of the auditions. The winner will receive a $1,000.00 scholarship to fund higher education costs, which will be payable to the financial aid department of his or her college upon successful completion of the first semester. The winner will also perform as featured soloist with the Charlottesville Municipal Band at its Spring Concert.

Past Winners

Rose Bittle2019 Winner:
Rose Bittle

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Jason Dech 2018 Winner photo
2018 Winner:
Jason Dech

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Charlotte MacDonald 2017 Winner photo
2017 Winner:
Charlotte MacDonald

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Maggie Archer 2016
2016 Winner:
Maggie Archer

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Chris Hays 2015
2015 Winner:
Chris Hays

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Geneva Knight 2014
2014 Winner:
Geneva Knight

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2012 Winner:
Marie Fernandez

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Samantha Marshall
2011 Winner:
Samantha Marshall

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Anthony Poehailos
2010 Winner:
Anthony Poehailos

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The Municipal Band of Charlottesville, Inc. © 2020

1119 Fifth Street SW - Suite B
Charlottesville, Virginia 22902-6480