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The Eva Marton Singing Competition - Budapest
In the run-up to the RWVI Congress in Budapest in June 2017, will present a series of news items on the thriving cultural scene in this famous musical city. Firstly, a report on the recent Eva Marton Singing Competition.
After an intense struggle between the ten finalists, the Belarussian Alexander Roslavets won the €15,000 Grand Prix and the €3000 Audience Prize of the II International Éva Marton Singing Competition organised on 19-25 September 2016 at the Liszt Academy. The 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, soprano Lilla Horti, while the €6000 3rd prize was taken by the Polish soprano Lucyna Jarzabek. The prizes were presented after the 24 September final in the Grand Hall of the Liszt Academy.
The results speak for themselves: mature artists ready for the world’s greatest opera stages considered it important to submit applications to the II International Éva Marton Singing Competition. And there can be no better proof of the fact that the competition, created and carried out with the greatest attention to every single detail – from the composition of the international jury right up to the tiniest laurel motif on the awards – is truly global and that it did in truth garner attention from all over the world, than the fact that live online streaming (via 10 cameras) of both the semi-finals and the finals was followed from Japan to the United States, from Norway to Brazil, in more than 30 countries around the world” said Imre Szabó Stein, communications director of the Liszt Academy and competition project manager, speaking after the final.

The competitors passed through to the final – prize winners Polina Shamaeva (Russia), Ksenia Khovanova (Russia), Kim Eunhee (South Korea), Azat Malik (Kazakhstan), Sylwia Olszynska (Poland), and Theodora Raftis (Cyprus) – agreed that the Éva Marton Singing Competition was an unmissable opportunity and door onto the international opera scene, emphasizing that they had never seen such professional organization and a venue as the Liszt Academy. “The patina and lustre are the very essence of the Liszt Academy’s first ever self-organized major competition. There is no doubt whatsoever that the International Éva Marton Singing Competition arranged with considerable success for the second time has a leading position in the world, and despite its modest budget it can be ranked alongside such prestigious events as the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels, the St. Petersburg Obraztsova International Competition, and the Operalia hallmarked by Plácido Domingo. I presume it is important to add, having been working now for a year creating the Bartók World Competition and Festival, with no hesitation we can utilize our specific knowledge and know-how gained throughout the Éva Marton Singing Competition to create something worthy of the universal greatness of Bartók. I dare to say that the creation of a grand competition may well be called a piece of art” said Imre Szabó Stein.

Before the announcement of the winners, Miguel Lerín, one of the most influential managers on the European opera scene, on behalf of the jury said that they were looking for the sort of artists who seem to be 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 her since they brought new things with them.

The closing event of the competition, a gala concert on 25th September was hosted in the Hungarian State Opera. Diplomas and special prizes were presented to the finalists who were invited all to perform an aria accompanied by the Hungarian State Opera Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Balázs Kocsár. The finalists won invitations from leading concert venues in Hungary, symphony orchestras and festivals, as well as the special commendations of jury members, the Liszt Academy and Éva Marton.

Éva Marton is the Chief Patron of the Hungarian Richard Wagner Society and Patron of the Congress to be held in Budapest, 07-10 June.