George And Nora London Foundation Competition For Opera Singers Holds Final Round On February 17

The finals will be livestreamed free of charge on the foundation's website and YouTube channel.

By: Jan. 12, 2023
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George And Nora London Foundation Competition For Opera Singers Holds Final Round On February 17

The George and Nora London Foundation Competition for American and Canadian opera singers will hold its 51st event in 2023 with an in-person audience - for the first time since 2020 - for its final round at New York's Morgan Library and Museum on Friday, February 17, at 4:00 pm.

The finals will also be livestreamed free of charge on the foundation's website and YouTube channel. One of the opera world's oldest and most prestigious competitions, the event will confer its George London Award of $12,000 (increased this year from $10,000) upon five singers, and Encouragement Awards of $2,000 upon the remaining finalists.

After three days of semi-final rounds, a dozen finalists, some of the best young opera singers from the U.S. and Canada, will perform in the final round with pianist Michael Fennelly before a panel of judges and audience at The Morgan Library & Museum's Gilder Lehrman Hall. Each finalist performs one selection, and the winners are announced to the audience immediately after the judges' deliberations.

This year's panel of judges includes soprano Harolyn Blackwell, mezzo-soprano Susanne Mentzer, mezzo-soprano Susan Quittmeyer, bass James Morris, and former Metropolitan Opera administrator Lenore Rosenberg.

This is the first year that the foundation, devoted to the support of young opera singers and originally named for the legendary Canadian-American bass-baritone George London, has held the competition under its new name. The organization became the George and Nora London Foundation for Singers in September 2022 to honor Nora London, the longtime president of the foundation, who passed away earlier in the year. Nora London was married to George London from 1954 to 1985, the year of his death, and had since been President of the George London Foundation for Singers, which her husband established in 1971.

The 2022-23 season of the George and Nora London Foundation at The Morgan concludes with a recital by 2018 George London Award winner Benjamin Taylor, baritone, with pianist Katelan Terrell on Sunday, April 16, 2023, at 4:00 pm.

Since 1971, the competition for the George London Awards has given more than 300 honors, and a total of more than $2 million, to an outstanding roster of artists many of whom have gone on to international stardom - the list of past winners includes Christine Brewer, Joyce DiDonato, Renée Fleming, Christine Goerke, Catherine Malfitano, James Morris, Susanna Phillips, Matthew Polenzani, Sondra Radvanovsky, Neil Shicoff, Richard Stilwell, Dawn Upshaw, and Willard White, to name just a few. As The New York Times noted, "this prestigious competition ... can rightfully claim to act as a springboard for major careers in opera."

In the production of Terence Blanchard's opera Fire Shut Up in My Bones that opened the Metropolitan Opera's 2021-22 season, six George London Award winners were featured in the cast: Will Liverman, Latonia Moore, Ryan Speedo Green, Norman Garrett, Donovan Singletary, and Errin Duane Brooks.

The 2021 George London Award winners were mezzo-soprano Megan Moore, tenor Eric Ferring, and baritones Blake Denson, Erik Grendahl, and Timothy Murray. See the full list of George London Award winners:

George London was one of the most renowned opera stars of the 20th century, who blazed a trail for American singers in the international opera world. Following his acclaimed singing career, London held positions as Artistic Director of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Director of the National Opera Institute, as well as the head of the Washington Opera, and he devoted a great part of the time and energy of his later years to the nurturing of rising young artists. Initially created under the auspices of the National Opera Institute, the George London Awards program has been administered since 1990 directly by the foundation as a living legacy to George London's own exceptional talent and generosity.

In addition to the annual competition, the George and Nora London Foundation also presents a recital series to give grantees exposure and experience, and, in many cases, a New York recital debut. The foundation also awards scholarships to promising high school students attending the pre-college program of The Juilliard School, a program now in its 12th year.

Friday, February 17, 2023, at 4:00 pm

The Morgan Library & Museum


Final Round and Awards Announcement

Tickets: $55

Link to buy tickets


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