Moraes said this was the first time he had participated in this type of competition.
“I always had it in my mind that competitions are something really bad because music is something to be appreciated, not judged,” Moraes said.
For the qualifying round, the native of Brazil prepared three pieces and sent in a video performance.
During the semifinal round, Moraes performed three additional pieces. In the final round, he performed a 25-minute program composed of pieces from different periods and styles.
Placing third in the competition awarded Moraes more than just confirmation of his ability. He also won several guitar accessories and 10 sets of guitar strings. But most importantly, he was awarded the opportunity to pursue music study further with a scholarship.
“I made some good contacts, and I was offered a master’s scholarship at Texas Christian University,” Moraes said.
He gives a lot of credit to his teacher, Marshall guitar professor Júlio Alves, who originally taught Moraes when they both lived in Brazil.
Alves said his student has reason to be proud because the Alhambra-USA International Guitar Competition has become one of the more reputable competitions. Competitions such as this help young players get moving on a career as performers.
“I’m very proud. It’s quite an accomplishment,” Alves said. “Danilo was the only undergraduate player among the three finalists and the other two players have participated on several other guitar competitions. It’s nice to see him as part of this, in a competition featuring good players internationally.”
“This experience made me ‘click,’ ” Moraes said. “Participating in this competition made me grow and change my perspective.”