Local student musician earns gold medal

Joshua Siderits and his teacher Rodney Stucky
By Kristin Rover
Sun staff

Joshua Siderits, of Pierce Township, has been playing the guitar since he was 3 years old and while he is only 10 years old now, his years of practice have already earned him a National Gold Medal from the Royal Conservatory of Music, a music education institution in Canada.

A National Gold Medal, according to the Royal Conservatory of Music, is awarded each academic year to students who achieve the highest mark in the county on their Music Development Program assessment and who have also completed the theory co-requisites for their level and discipline.

Joshua’s mother, Amy, said Joshua has been taking lessons from Rodney Stucky with the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music for around five years.

Siderits said through the CCM program, Joshua was encouraged to participate in the Music Development Program, which includes the performance assessment.

“They have levels of completion to recognize your level of expertise,” Siderits said. “What they do is offer exams in May, August and January. When all the grades are compiled, they had out awards of recognition.”

Siderits said it takes a complete year for the results to come in because there are assessments throughout the year.

She said Joshua received the National Gold Medal this year for 2013.

Joshua said finding out that he won the National Gold Medal was exciting.

“I felt happy of course,” Siderits said. “But I really was happy and it showed me how hard I worked that year and how hard I should work every year.”

Siderits said the most challenging part about the assessment process was staying calm.

“I knew I had to stay calm to get it done and be excellent,” Siderits said.

Siderits said he enjoys playing guitar and hopes to continue to play well.

“My favorite thing about it is I love the sound of the music,” Siderits said.

Joshua said he enjoys being able to play different speeds and make different sounds when he plays the guitar.

Amy Siderits said in addition to his studies, Joshua also enjoys playing guitar at church and for different organizations including veterans groups.

She said playing guitar has been beneficial for him in many ways.

“He spends a lot of time practicing,” Siderits said. “It gives him confidence, the ability to do something that is hard and be a little braver. It’s a good way for him to mature.”

Joshua said he is planning to work as hard this year as he did last year playing guitar.

“I hopefully will be playing guitar for a really long time,” Siderits said.