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American Contralto Wins Norway's Queen Sonja Competition

By Sara Schabas on September 5, 2023

Jasmin White
Contralto Jasmin White wins first prize at the Queen Sonja Competition (Photo courtesy of the competition)

Contralto Jasmin White has won first place at the 2023 Queen Sonja Competition, including a  €50,000 prize.

The Judges

The 2023 Queen Sonja Competition was judged by directors and administrators from the Norwegian Opera, Washington National Opera, the Metropolitan Opera, Opernhaus Zürich, Theater an der Wien and the Dutch National Opera. Randi Stene, the jury director, shared that the panel was looking for an artist who was “the complete package,” expressing that the competition had been very close.

The Winner

Jasmin White (who uses they/them pronouns) wowed audiences with their performances of Erda’s aria from Wagner’s Das Rheingold, “Iris, Hence Away” from Handel’s Semele and Rossini’s “Di tanti palpiti” from Tancredi.

White made their Metropolitan Opera debut in Porgy and Bess in 2019 and is a current member of Vienna Volksoper’s opera studio. They are a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and have recently been signed by IMG Artists. White looks forward to debuts with Teatro dell’Opera di Roma and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and also recently took home second prize at Belgium’s Queen Elisabeth Competition.

Armenian baritone Aksel Daveyan won second place with €10,000, followed by German countertenor Nils Wanderer in third with €5,000. The remaining finalists included baritones Navasard Hakobyan and Vladyslav Tlushch, as well as mezzo-soprano Rebecka Wallroth.

Hear White’s captivating performance of Mahler’s “Urlicht” in Brussels here:

Sara Schabas
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