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Soprano Simone Osborne wins Jeunesses Musicales first Maureen Forrester Award

By John Terauds on November 30, 2012

(Connor Beaton photo)

Former Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio member, soprano Simone Orborne, is the first winner of Jeunesses Musicales Canada’s new Maureen Forrester Award.

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds, Editor-Emeritus of Ludwig van Toronto, is currently a Divinity student at the University of Toronto and a church music director. He joined the Toronto Star in 1988, was the classical music critic from 2005 to 2012, and continues as a freelance critic for the paper. He is the co-author of Roy Thomson Hall: A Portrait, a book written with Toronto Star Colleague, William Littler.
John Terauds

Torontonians might remember Osborne most vividly from an endearing turn as Lauretta in the Canadian Opera Company’s double-bill production of Giacomo Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi last spring.

The main component of the award is two seasons’ worth of recitals across Canada — more than 40 in total. The 25-year-old singer will perform with pianist Anne Larlee.

The Forrester award also includes a commission for a new vocal work set on Canadian verse from the Toronto-based Canadian Art Song Project. This goes to Toronto composer Brian Current, who heads the New Music Ensemble at the Royal Conservtory of Music’s Glenn Gould Professional School.

Jeunesses Musicales tours are the only source of professional-quality art music in many small towns across the country. The artists who participate in these tours also get to perform in larger centres.

Maureen Forrester enthusiastically performed several cross-country tours, championed Canadian composers and was president of Jeunesses Musicales Canada in the early 1970s.

“It is in the spirit of this remarkable artist that Jeunesses Musicales Canada created this prize, a triennial tour, which will highlight an exceptional Canadian vocal artist ready to embark upon an international career, as well as promote the talent of a collaborative pianist, composer, and poet,” stated the organization in its press release.

Here is Osborne in full flight with accompanist Leslie Dala for the students at Vancouver’s Saint James Music Academy last year:

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds, Editor-Emeritus of Ludwig van Toronto, is currently a Divinity student at the University of Toronto and a church music director. He joined the Toronto Star in 1988, was the classical music critic from 2005 to 2012, and continues as a freelance critic for the paper. He is the co-author of Roy Thomson Hall: A Portrait, a book written with Toronto Star Colleague, William Littler.
John Terauds
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