MAY 18 2019 – NEW YORK CITY, NY – Today, the Fritz & Lavinia Jensen Foundation awarded Olivia Vote First Place in the 20th annual Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition in New York City. For the final day of the competition, Ms. Vote, a mezzo-soprano, performed “Air de lettre” from Jules Massenet’s Werther, “Je vais mourir” from Les Troyens by Hector Berlioz, and “Wie du Warst” from Richard Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier. Ms. Vote received $15,000 as first place winner.
“I am so thrilled to be the winner of the Jensen Competition,” said Ms. Vote. “I plan to use the winnings to take more coachings and language study for some important role debuts coming up: I’ll be singing my first Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos with Cincinnati Opera this summer and also preparing Charlotte in Werther to cover Joyce Didonato at The Metropolitan Opera next season. I would also love to get back to Europe and audition for some theaters this fall, and this money will make that possible.”
“My experience with the Jensen Competition was so uplifting. The judges greeted you with a smile, genuinely watched while you sang, and gave helpful, constructive feedback. Thanks to this competition, I have made connections with new companies and conductors I would not have otherwise made. It's an honor to have won this year, and I thank the Jensen Foundation for giving singers the opportunity to thrive and move ahead in our careers.” Ms. Vote received her Masters degree in Music from the Yale School of Music and her Bachelor of Music degree from the North Carolina School of the Arts. Visit Ms. Vote’s website here.
Other 2019 Jensen award winners were mezzo-soprano Corrie Stallings (Second Place Award Winner - $10,000), soprano Teresa Castillo (Third Place Award Winner - $7,500), and soprano Sylvia D’Eramo (Munday Encouragement Award Winner - $3,000).
Additional finalists who performed in the 2019 Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition were:
Sydney Anderson | Soprano
Mario Diaz-Moresco | Baritone
Leah Heater | Mezzo-Soprano
Helen Huang | Soprano
Jessica Johnson Brock | Mezzo-Soprano
Laura Leon | Soprano
Amy Owens | Soprano
Tyler Putnam | Bass
Timothy Renner | Baritone
Kenneth Stavert | Baritone
These singers distinguished themselves from a field of 112 auditioners and 254 applicants. Judges for the 2019 Jensen Finals were Harolyn Blackwell, Vincent de Kort, and Bill Powers (Read their bios here.) Judges for the Preliminary Rounds, held Monday-Thursday, were Kirsten Chambers, soprano; Ben Leaptrott (Brenau University); and Oliver Worthington (Butler University). The 2019 Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition was held May 13-18 in the Engelman Recital Hall at Baruch Performing Arts Center in New York City.
About the Fritz & Lavinia Jensen Foundation
The Fritz and Lavinia Jensen Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit foundation, established by Lavinia Jensen in honor of her late husband, Fritz Jensen. Their lifelong love for the arts has benefited many musicians and musical organizations. The Foundation continues their philanthropic passion for the musical arts by supporting young artists pursuing a career in opera. The centerpiece of The Jensen Foundation’s work is the annual Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition. Since the Competition’s inception in 2000, 153 singers have received more than $700,000 in support.