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  • 2015 Chamber Music Day participants and coaches

    2015 Competition Participants and Coaches

  • Parker Quartet

    Participants work with the world-renowned Parker Quartet

Chamber Music Day and Competition

USC Chamber Music Day and Competition with the Parker Quartet is an exceptional opportunity for advanced high school string quartets.

2016 Chamber Music Day

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Apply by February 1, 2016

Take advantage of a unique opportunity to work with the world-renowned Parker Quartet, in residence at USC. The Quartet will mentor pre-formed student string quartets through intensive coachings and master classes throughout the day, leading to a performance and competition in the evening. Coaches will be members of the Parker Quartet – Daniel Chong, Ying Xue, Jessica Bodner and Kee-Hyun Kim and USC string faculty – William Terwilliger (violin), Daniel Sweaney (viola) and Robert Jesselson (cello).

"The coaches' words of experience, their critique, as well as words of encouragement not only helped our quartet to challenge ourselves and experiment with different musical concepts during the workshop/competition, but they also instilled within us a lasting goal of trying to understand the music on a deeper level.” – 2014 attendee

All events are free and open to the public to observe.

Competition Prizes

First Prize: $500
Second Prize: $300
Third Prize: $150


Repertoire for the day will include one substantial movement of a major work from the quartet literature. In order to work on the highest artistic level, advance preparation is expected of each quartet prior to the event.

Competition Judges

All members of the Parker Quartet and several USC faculty members serve as judges for the competition. There will also be an "audience favorite" prize, as voted by members of the audience.

The Coaches

Daniel Chong - violin I, Parker Quartet
Ying Xue - violin II, Parker Quartet
Jessica Bodner - viola, Parker Quartet
Kee-Hyun Kim - cello, Parker Quartet
Dr. William Terwilliger - violin, USC faculty
Neil Casey - violin and conducting, USC
Dr. Daniel Sweaney - viola, USC faculty (new in 2014)
Dr. Robert Jesselson - cello, USC faculty


Enrollment is limited to 8 string quartets. All quartets are eligible to compete in the competition, but are not required to.


$140 per quartet for all activities. Lunch is provided, and each group is given a CD of their performance.


Lodging is not provided, but there are a variety of hotels in close proximity to the School of Music (813 Assembly Street) in downtown Columbia.

Application procedure

1.    All groups must be pre-formed and should send a CD, DVD or MP3 file of one movement of a major work of the string quartet repertoire.
2.    Application fee of $25 (non-refundable)
3.    Application deadline: February 1, 2016.
4.    Send the application form and all materials to:

Dr. William Terwilliger
The University of South Carolina School of Music
813 Assembly St. 
Columbia, SC 29208

2015 Winners

First Prize ($500):
The Biscopink String Quartet - Spartanburg, S.C. (Coach: Susan Baier, Dorman High School)
Second Prize ($350):
The Jolly String Quartet - Mt. Juliet, Tennessee (Coach: Alan Rafferty, Cincinnati Conservatory of Music)
Third Prize ($150):
The Potter Quartet - Greenville, S.C. (Coach: John Ravnan, Greenville Fine Arts Center)
Honorable Mention:
The Havillten String Quartet - Columbia, S.C. (Coaches: Neil Casey and William Terwilliger, USC)
Audience Favorite Prize ($50):
The Havillten String Quartet

Read about the 2015 Chamber Music Day.