11th Young American Singers Competition, with the sponsorship of Bach Choir, back – Times News Online
Posted on November 06, 2021 at 12:05 am
After a delay of more than 18 months, the final of the 11th Biennial Competition for Young American Singers, sponsored by the American Bach Society and the Bach Choir of Bethlehem, will be held this fall in Bethlehem.
The finalists will appear before a panel of judges and an audience in Bethlehem, Pa. On Sunday, November 14 at 12:30 p.m., Luckenbach Mill, 459 Old York Road, Colonial Industrial Quarter, Bethlehem.
The finals of the competition are open to the public free of charge.
From a group of around 50 applicants, nine finalists were selected to compete for the top prize
Each singer will present a secco recitative and two arias by JS Bach.
The first prize winner chosen by the judges will receive a career development grant of $ 3,000 and an opportunity to perform solo with the Bach Choir of Bethlehem, in an upcoming season.
In addition to the first prize, up to three additional cash prizes of $ 500 may be awarded to other finalists, at the discretion of the judges.
The Bach Choir COVID-19 protocol requires members of the public to present proof of vaccination and an ID card. Face masks must be worn indoors.
Commenting on the long-awaited competition, artistic director and conductor Greg Funfgeld said: “Our competition for young American singers has identified incredible talents, including Dashon Burton, Meg Bragle, Sascha Cooke and several others, all of whom are leading a major international career.
“Hearing these incredibly talented young artists and doing our part to foster their career development and artistic and musical growth has been deeply gratifying and satisfying. This is one more aspect of our educational commitment and I am proud of all that we have achieved, ”said Funfgeld.
Leela Breithaupt, who began her tenure as CEO of the Bach Choir in July, looks forward to meeting and hearing from the finalists in November.
“The Young American Singers competition is an essential way to discover and encourage young singers who have a particular interest in Bach’s music. We are delighted to welcome the competition again and invite these talented musicians to Bethlehem, ”said Breithaupt.
Judges for the final will include:
• Kendra Colton, soprano
• Rosa Lamoreaux, soprano and conductor of the Bach Choir
• David Newman, bass baritone
• Stephen Crist, Bach Fellow and Faculty Member, Emory University
• Greg Funfgeld, artistic director and conductor of the Bach Choir Bethlehem
The American Bach Society was founded in 1972 by a group of American academics in Princeton, NJ, who formed a chapter of the Neue Bachgesellschaft (New Bach Society), an organization founded in Germany in 1900 to promote the study and the interpretation of Bach’s music.
The founding members of the American chapter included Gerhard Herz, Alfred Mann, Robert Marshall, Arthur Mendel, William Scheide and Christoph Wolff.
Mann, as secretary, administered the affairs of the chapter from the offices of America’s oldest Bach organization, The Bach Choir of Bethlehem (founded 1898), where he was director from 1970 to 1980.
The New Bach Society, American chapter, held its first meeting in 1976 at the Moravian Seminary in Bethlehem, and continued to hold meetings every three years until 1988.
In 1988, under the leadership of George Buelow, the section incorporated into the American Bach Society, an independent non-profit organization.
In 2000, in collaboration with the Bach Choir of Bethlehem, the Society created a biennial Bach Singing Competition for young American singers.