Alexander Roslavets wins the II Éva Marton International Singing Competition

25 September 2016

The Belarusian Alexander Roslavets won the €15,000 Grand Prix and the Audience Prize of the Éva Marton International Singing Competition in the final on Saturday; the only Hungarian competitor, Lilla Horti, won second prize.

The winners of the Grand Prix, 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes as well as the Audience Prize were announced late on Saturday evening at the Liszt Academy at the final that was also broadcast live on the competition website. Winner of the €12,000 1st prize was the Mongolian Ankhbayar Enkhbold, the second place went to the only Hungarian making it into the final, Lilla Horti, while the €6000 3rd prize was taken by Polish artist Lucyna Jarzabek. The Audience Prize was presented to the Belarusian winner of the Grand Prix. Diplomas and special prizes are being presented at the gala concert in the Hungarian State Opera on Sunday.

The following also made it into the final round: Polina Shamaeva (Russia), Ksenia Khovanova (Russia), Kim Eunhee (South Korea), Azat Malik (Kazakhstan), Sylwia Olszynska (Poland), and Theodora Raftis (Cyprus). During the final, each singer appeared on stage twice and the jury reached its decision after the second intermission. Before the announcement of the winners, Miguel Lerín, one of the most influential managers on the European opera scene and a member of the jury, said that during the competition organized for the second time they were looking for the sort of artists who were capable of realizing what Éva Marton achieved, whose career is founded on an incredible level of hard work and much learning. In her closing speech Éva Marton thanked first and foremost the Liszt Academy and all those who had helped in the arrangement of the competition, and then before the presentation of prizes she added that they had heard marvellous voices and seen amazing personalities at this magnificent competition, and there were some who simply amazed since they brought new things with them. She said that all the young people making it into the final were rounded artists who could look forward to great things. She also said that the natural order of life is to hand over our place to young people and the future, but till then to build the present and future, bringing glory for us, for Hungary, and everybody for their own homeland.

More than 100 artists from 25 countries on five continents submitted entries to the II Éva Marton International Singing Competition announced in January 2016. In the end, the selection jury led by Éva Marton admitted 77 competitors through to the live rounds, of whom 48 young singers representing 18 nations had to make the long trip to Budapest, where they gave recitals of a freely chosen Liszt song and an opera excerpt in the preliminaries on 20 and 21 September. Twenty-seven made it through to the semi-finals on 22 September, where they had to give performances of two other parts from operas. The 10 competitors getting into the final recited two further arias accompanied by the Hungarian State Opera Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Balázs Kocsár.

The competition has total prize money of more than €45,000. The jury is headed by Éva Marton and includes Hungarian and international celebrities from the world of opera such as Miguel Lerín, one of the most influential managers in European opera, Vittorio Terranova, artistic director of the F. Tagliavini opera competition, Christina Scheppelmann, artistic director of the Teatro Liceu in Barcelona, Prof. Sung Bin Kim, dean of the Faculty of Music of Daeshin University, South Korea, Anatoli Goussev, professor of the La Scuola Musicale in Foro Buonaparte di Milano, Honghai Ma, Professor of the Central Conservatory of Music, Beijing, Andrea Meláth, head of the Department of Vocal and Opera Studies, Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, and Szilveszter Ókovács, director of the Hungarian State Opera. Chair of the jury is Éva Marton and guest of honour is Richard Bonynge, conductor, who offered a €5000 special prize in memory of his wife, Dame Joan Sutherland, who died in 2010.

Every finalist takes to the stage once again at the gala concert (25 September) concluding the competition, and then a few days later they can be seen on television: at the request of Imre Szabó Stein, communications director of the Liszt Academy, Hungarian broadcaster MTVA is making a 55-minute film of the competition, which will be aired on the new cultural channel of state television on 1 October, World Music Day.