Inaugural International Opera Awards Supports Aspiring Talent.
At The Opera Awards this year a grand total of £40, 000 was raised for The Opera Awards Foundation. That was made up of 10% of the total revenue, silent auction takings, raffle and donations.
Jonas Kaufmann (Above) was presented with not one, but two awards, at the inaugural ceremony of the International Opera Awards. It had been widely anticipated that he would walk away with the Male Singer Award, but he was also the overwhelming favourite of the “Readers’ Award” which was voted on by over 6000 readers of Opera magazine.
Attended by 700 people at London’s Park Lane Hilton Hotel, these inaugural awards celebrated the diversity of opera as an art form, offering 23 different categories of from Best Conductor, Male Singer, Female Singer and Director, to Lighting, Costume and Set Design, to Philanthropist, Chorus and Lifetime Achievement.
Opera is one of the most dramatic and debated of all the performing arts, often creating immense controversy. So it was surprising that unlike film, drama, literature, music and ballet, there had, until now, been no international awards dedicated solely to opera. It took the business acumen of Harry Hyman to spot this gap in the market and a chance meeting with John Allison, Editor of Opera Magazine, to make it happen.
The aim of Harry Hyman, the opera loving business man who founded the Awards, was to focus the spotlight on opera to a much wider audience, so extending its appeal. He comments: “Not only do we wish to reward success, but part of the funds generated from these Awards will be channeled into at least 10 bursaries to help aspiring talent.”
John Allison, Editor of Opera Magazine, who is the Chair of the distinguished jury, adds: “Very few opera companies are immune to the current financial crunch, and in such a climate it’s tempting to play it safe. That, in turn, can spell artistic poverty. But the Awards are celebrating artistic richness—achieved by the risk-takers of our profession—and I’m delighted that the event highlights so many great performances.”
The world of opera will now be recognized and celebrated through this annual event.
Applications for bursaries will be opening in June 2014, more information can be found at www.operaawards.org