Russian scoops top prize at St Albans International Organ Festival
FOR the first time since the foundation of the International Organ Festival in St Albans in 1963, the major prize has been won by a young musician from Russia. Konstantin Volosnov, 29, who studied in Moscow, not only beat 15 other contestants to the �6,00
FOR the first time since the foundation of the International Organ Festival in St Albans in 1963, the major prize has been won by a young musician from Russia.
Konstantin Volosnov, 29, who studied in Moscow, not only beat 15 other contestants to the �6,000 first prize in the Interpretation Competition but also won the �1,000 prize awarded in honour of the Festival's founder, Dr Peter Hurford for the best performance of a work by J S Bach and the �500 audience prize.
Winner of the �2,500 second prize was Czech organist Linda Sitkova, 26.
It was third time lucky for French organist Jean-Baptist Dupont, 29, who won the �6,000 prize in the Improvisation competition He had previously reached the finals in 2005 and 2007.
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The �800 Douglas May award for the best performance on the Festival Society's own organ at St Saviour's church by a competitor not receiving any other prize went to 29-year-old Hungarian Peter Kovats.
Speaking at the announcement of the prize winners in St Albans Abbey on Friday evening, festival artistic director, David Titterington, said the jury of internationally renowned organists was acutely aware that in presenting the first prizes it could make or break careers.
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The winning organists were presented with their prizes at the Prize-winners' Concert which ended the 25th Festival in St Albans Abbey on Saturday.
Festival chairman, Lesley King commented: "This has been a tremendous festival with some very fine competitors from around the world. To mark our 25th event we have seen some fine performances by world-renowned artists and I am sure it has been a worthy celebration of our jubilee.