Kulturkompasset | critics of culture events

Belvedere Competition 2015


Hans Gabor Belvedere Competition 2015

By Henning Høholt, Foto: © Paul van Wijngaarden

AMSTERDAM/NETHERLANDS: 4. July 2015. The results of this year’s Belvedere Finals at the Dutch National Opera & Ballet on Saturday night: 1st  Prize: LEVY SEKGAPANE, Tenor, South Africa. 2nd Prize: LISE DAVIDSEN, Soprano, Norway. 3rd Prize: KI HUN PARK, Tenor, South Korea. In adition LISE DAVIDSEN also won the Prize of the International Media-Jury and the Prize of the Audience.

Belvedere 2015 winners.  From left to right: Lise Davidsen (2nd Prize + Audience Prize as well as Prize of the Int’l Media Jury), Levy Sekgapane (1st Prize), Ki Hun Park (3rd Prize) Foto: © Paul van Wijngaarden

Belvedere 2015 winners. From left to right: Lise Davidsen (2nd Prize + Audience Prize as well as Prize of the Int’l Media Jury), Levy Sekgapane (1st Prize), Ki Hun Park (3rd Prize) Foto: © Paul van Wijngaarden

15 singers from 10 countries could qualify for the Finals.

Including four from South Africa as well as for the first time in the history of the Competition  a singer from Kenya.

The level of singers in general has been very high this year. The press responsable for the competition Dr. Elisabeth Thun-Hohenstein tells to Kulturkompasset.

1st  Prize: LEVY SEKGAPANE, Tenor, South Africa. Donated in memoriam KS Teresa Stich-Randall.

2nd Prize: LISE DAVIDSEN, Soprano, Norway. Donated by Jan Meulendijks and Bart Schuil

3rd Prize: KI HUN PARK, Tenor, South Korea. Donated by Valentin and Anni Leitgeb Foundation.

Prize of the International Media-Jury: LISE DAVIDSEN, Soprano, Norway. Donated by RBT Reisen- und Business Tours GmbH München – Jörg A. Bachmann.

Prize of the Audience: LISE DAVIDSEN, Soprano, Norway. Donated by De Unie van de Soroptimistclubs in Nederland.

Norwegian prizewinners through the years. In 1985 Carsten Stabell, bass, in 1987 Trond Halstein Moe, baryton. While Marita Sølberg took the 3rd prize in 2004.

Through many years the “Father” of the new operahouse in Oslo, former operachief Bjørn Simensen was member of the prominent jury.

LISE DAVIDSEN

Lise Davidsen på innvielsen av Kirsten Flagstad Salen i Hamar Kulturhus i 2014. Foto Henning-Høholt

Lise Davidsen på innvielsen av Kirsten Flagstad Salen i Hamar Kulturhus i 2014. Foto Henning-Høholt

Lise Davidsen is 13th-19th July participating in the Placido Domingo singing competition – OPERALIA at the Royal Opera House in London, and she will also participate in the Queen Sonja singing competition in Oslo in August,

Please enjoy our review from Paul Hindemiths Sancta Susanna with Lise Davidsen this spring in Oslo at: http://www.kulturkompasset.com/2015/02/23/var-sesongens-opera-hoydepunkt/

Please also enjoy our review from the inaguration of the Kirsten Flagstad hall at Hamar new Culture house in 2014, where Lise Davidsen sung “Dich teure Halle” fra Richard Wagners opera Tannhäuser. 

 

From The Belvedere Competition 2015:

A livestream can be found under the following links, the first shows the performances of all 15 candidates and the second shows the prize awarding ceremony.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3PUVIa8SwM&feature=youtu.be

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDy_VmorloQ

The links can also be found on our Radio 4 You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/radio4nl

 2016 Final in Cape Town

The Final Rounds 2016 will take place in Cape Town, South Africa – for the first time in the Competition’s history outside of Europe.

ABOUT THE COMPETITION

Hans GaborDrawing of starting numbersVienna – Amsterdam

How the Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition became the biggest singers’ stock exchange in the world

From the very beginning of his artistic career, Hans Gabor, the founder and long-term manager of the Wiener Kammeroper, was engaged in discovering and promoting young talented singers. Quite some singers who later became international opera stars, made their first steps in opera life under his artistic leadership.

These efforts were channeled into the successful concept of a very special singing competition: instead of academic vocal instructors, those who are in practice responsible for the engagement of singers, were to assess the talents and maturity of singers: opera and festival managers, music promoters and representatives of the media industry. Artists’ agencies were given observer status.

That was the background against which the 1st Belvedere Competition took place in Vienna in 1982. The idea of a trustworthy “singers’ stock exchange” without a strictly academic orientation quickly gained popularity. Applications started to come in from around the world. Very soon the number of participants had to be restricted in order not to overtax the jury. In 1992 the decision was made to organize preliminary rounds all over the world. The first qualifying rounds were held in 13 cities, and by now that number has risen more and more.

As early as in 1988, the competition – up until then reserved to the operatic repertory – was extended, also to encompass operetta. In 2000 the accompanists’ competition was added. Both will still continue, even if not every year.

Since 1995 the name of Hans Gabor was added to the original name “Belvedere Competition” – after all, his work is inseparably linked with the contest.

An ever increasing number of institutions have donated special prizes, be it in cash or in kind, or in the form of engagements. Apart from the main prizes, the much vied-for prize of the audience can be won; it is awarded by the audience of the public final concert until today.

Since 2013 the International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition is spreading its wings. The final rounds, held for the last 31 years in Vienna, take now place in the most renowned opera houses around the world on an alternating basis. In 2013 the city of Amsterdam hosted the first event outside of Austria since its founding, followed by Düsseldorf in 2014, Amsterdam again in 2015 and Cape Town in 2016. Plans for subsequent years will take the competition’s final rounds to European cities and overseas.

Isabella Gabor and Holger Bleck, General Managers since 1999, are thrilled about the upcoming perspectives: “Amsterdam is a fantastic city, we love the hospitality, the openness of the people and the commitment of our Dutch partners. We look forward to being again guests in the Netherlands with the 34th edition of the Final Rounds in 2015.”

The 2015 qualifying rounds are held in 63 cities world-wide. The finals take place in cooperation with the Dutch National Opera & Ballet, on 4 July 2015. The singers continue to be judged by a jury consisting of artistic and casting directors from the world’s most prestigious opera houses including the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London, Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Osterfestspiele Salzburg, Metropolitan Opera New York, to name a few.

The International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition is THE “springboard” for a career in opera: Past participants and prize winners include Angelika Kirchschlager, Angela Gheorghiu, Ildikó Raimondi, Elisabete Matos, Elina Garanča, Lado Ataneli, Peter Edelmann, Trond Halstein Moe, Carsten Stabell. Recent winners include Italian tenor Antonio Poli, who made his debut in 2011 at the Salzburg Festival alongside Anna Netrebko and Piotr Beczala. Soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen, the 1st prize winner of the International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition in 2011, made her highly-acclaimed Royal Opera House Covent Garden debut in 2012. And Pretty Yende, winner of all main prizes in 2009, makes an international career with engagements at the most renowned opera houses in the world.

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