All male winners at the Kathleen Ferrier prize

All male winners at the Kathleen Ferrier prize


norman lebrecht

April 30, 2017

First Prize

Julien Van Mellaerts baritone

Second Prize

James Way tenor

Song Prize

Patrick Terry countertenor

Accompanist’s Prize

>Gamal Khamis piano


  • Alexander Davidson says:

    When musicians are competing at this level and in these small numbers I doubt that four out of four prize-winners being male is statistically significant.

    • Bill Worley says:

      At the Final on Friday the Chair of the Jury said that more men than women entered, Of the 11 (out of the original 66 that were heard) that got through to the Semi Final there were 2 sopranos, 1 mezzo, 1 counter tenor, 2 tenors and 5 baritones. 6 got through to the final – 1 soprano, 1 counter tenor, 2 tenors and 2 baritones.

  • Una says:

    People win competitions and get nowhere half of the time, but the money is handy from this particular competition as it was set up as specifically for further study, not building an extension onto your house, which has happened with some competition winners in Britain! Further study was always the one main thing of the criteria for this particular competition, not the best singer who was ready to take the world by storm. People think it is for the best singer, but as far as I know, unless the rules have changed, it’s not. It was set up to give money specifically for those who showed promise, who would benefit from the extra lift in life, and not for finished singers or with the best voices or techniques. In my day you didn’t win it if you were so good but maybe the rules have changed over the last twenty years. My own teacher won it, which enabled him to study in German for two years – but even that was frowned upon as you were then expected to study in this country! Another female friend of mine won it about 15 years ago, and she was the eldest – three days later at 27, she would have not been able to have entered. Many of you will be more aware of the criteria than I would be as I don’t follow such things. It will be interesting in years to come to see where these men go in world of singing where there is so little decently paid work around – the market is full of singers and greater than the demand.

  • James says:

    Well, I hope it’s not a case of “Everybody loves a winner” but there have already been two major engagement enquiries for the Winner so it will, hopefully, proved both some financial stability in the early stages of a career as well as some raising of profile.

    I can also attest that the 2014 Loveday Song Prize Winner and at least one of last year’s First Prize Winners are both doing very well …