Local student headed to Carnegie Hall

A&E. Sparta's Maika Batchelor will perform at Carnegie Hall in March, after placing first in the Elite International Music Competition. Batchelor has been learning under the tutelage of Sparta's Joan Farrington, who's been teaching piano in Sparta for 43 years.

Sparta /
12 Jan 2020 | 10:32

Two Pope John students may have a brilliant career ahead. Maika Batchelor, 15, who is a sophomore at Pope John XXIII Regional High School and she won first place in the Elite International Music Competition. As a result, she will perform at Carnegie Hall in March 2020.

Among judge comments: "Overall she played with calm and musical expression."

Batchelor also won third place in the Crescendo International Music Competition. As a result she will perform in Rockport Music Hall in April, 2020. Judge comments included, "dynamics are nicely shaped."

The piece of music performed was the same in both competitions - Chopin’s Etude in E, Opus 10 #3, which is often called “Tristesse” meaning sadness.

Batchelor’s other interests are performing viola with the Sussex County Youth Orchestra. She is also a lifeguard for the Pope John swim team and plays field hockey. Maika’s piano teacher is Joan Farrington, who expressed admiration for Batchelor's memorization skills and her masterful performance of the the Etude. Farrington studied with Olga von Till, an associate of the New York Philharmonic and has been a piano teacher in Sparta for 43 years.