SØNK © Maarit Kytöharju

The Grand Prix in the Contest for Vocal Ensembles at the Tampere Vocal Music Festival, represented by the Näsinneula Trophy, was awarded to the eight-member group SØNK from Århus, Denmark. The group competed in the amplified category and won 1st prize, EUR 2500. The other prizewinners in this category were Of Cabbages and Kings from Germany (2nd prize, EUR 2000) and Kuvaja from Finland (3rd prize, EUR 1000). The jury also decided to award a special prize to a young and promising ensemble, InTones from Finland (EUR 1000).

In the acoustic category, 1st prize was awarded to Ensemble Nobiles from Leipzig, Germany (EUR 2500) and 2nd prize to Aba Taano from Uganda (EUR 1500). Nine ensembles in all performed at the Concluding Concert, where the prizes were given.

The chairman of the jury, Jussi Chydenius, noted that the Contest was of a very high standard. He was also pleased to find that the Finnish ensembles participating were of a better quality than in recent years. In his remarks at the Concluding Concert, he emphasised the communal nature of the Contest:

“This is not really a competition. We are here mainly to help you and support you if we can. We are very impressed with you and are privileged to be able to interact with people who are equally serious and passionate about this fine art form that we call vocal music.”

The other members of the jury in the Contest for Vocal Ensembles were Sara Brimer Davey (US), Karoliina Kantelinen (FI), Michael McGlynn (IR) and Paul Phoenix (UK). There were 12 ensembles in all in the final round of the Contest, which took place on Wednesday. The Contest for Vocal Ensembles is supported by the Kalle Kaihari Cultural Foundation.

Prizes in brief: Acoustic category: 1. Ensemble Nobiles EUR 2500, 2. Aba Taano EUR 1500. Amplified category: 1. SØNK EUR 2500, 2. Of Cabbages and Kings EUR 1500, 3. Kuvaja EUR 1000, special prize inTones (1000 €). Grand Prix : SØNK