July 22, 2014  

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Southern Miss Violinist Places Fourth at Prestigious Sphinx Competition

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Rainel Joubert

Rainel Joubert, a violin student at The University of Southern Mississippi, took fourth place honors at the prestigious Sphinx Competition held last month in Detroit, Mich.

The Sphinx Competition brings together the nation’s top black and Latino string musicians in high school and college. Contestants submit DVD applications with only 12 semifinalists in each division chosen for actual competition. Joubert advanced all the way to the finals round where he performed with the Sphinx Symphony Orchestra.

“I was really excited to make the finals because there is such a high quality of competition,” said Joubert, who is majoring in music performance. “You always want to do better and think you could have done more, but I did what I could.”

Asked if he planned to make another run at the Sphinx crown next year Joubert said, “I’m not just planning to, it’s a fact. I will be there, and I intend to win it.”

The Cuban-born Joubert, 25, began his musical studies at age 7. Since that time his chamber music recital appearances have taken him to Spain, Venezuela, Cuba and the United States. In addition to his musical pursuits, Joubert is also honing his English at the Southern Miss English Language Institute.

Shannon Thomas, visiting assistant professor of music at Southern Miss, notes that Joubert’s success brings impressive attention to the university and highlights the competitive drive necessary to excel on the big stage.

“Rainel continuously proves his dedication to excellence through a strong work ethic, attention to detail and unfaltering focus,” said Thomas. “He is a thoughtful musician who is open and quick to trying new ideas, combining his astute perceptiveness with innate ability. In addition to his outstanding musical abilities, Rainel is a kind and warm-hearted human being … a true delight to teach.”

To learn more about the Sphinx Competition visit: http://sphinxmusic.org. For more information about the Southern Miss School of Music call 601.266.5543 or visit: http://www.usm.edu/music/contact-us-departments