The Queen Sonja International Music Competition 2015 took place in Oslo from 12-21 August. 36 singers from 21 nations, including Iran, Israel, New Zealand and China, competed for the honour of a place in the final and considerable cash prizes.
Norwegian soprano Lise Davidsen (28) received the accolade of first place. She was also awarded the prize for the best interpretation of Norwegian music and the Ingrid Bjoners stipend. The second and third prizes went to French soprano Elsa Dreisig and Ukrainian baritone Yuriy Yurchuk. Two finalist prizes went to baritones Leon Kosavic from Croatia and Alexey Lavrov from Russia.
The final concert was broadcast live from the main stage of the Norwegian Opera House by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation. The finalists were accompanied by the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by John Helmer Fiore. Her Majesty Queen Sonja awarded the prizes.
An incredible journey
Head of the jury Sophie de Lint was extremely impressed by the finalists’ performance.
- One should not forget the incredible journey this has been for these five special young talents to reach the final round and the solid nerves they need to sing such a concert on the great stage of the Oslo Opera, all of this broadcast by Norwegian television! Congratulations to all of the finalists for offering an evening of unforgettable musical moments! I am sure these singers will find their way on the international scene very soon. It will be exciting to follow their path, said de Lint.
A varied programme
In addition to the final and semi-final at the Norwegian Opera & Ballet, and the preliminary rounds at the Norwegian Academy of Music, the Competition’s programme included the opening ceremony at Oslo’s town hall, a Gala concert with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and an open-air concert with the Royal Norwegian Navy Band in the grounds of the Akershus fortress. The semifinalists had the opportunity to take part in masterclasses on stagecraft and vocal technique with the award winning opera director Francisco Negrin and jury member and internationally renowned soprano Angelika Kirchschlager.