Jonas Kaufmann crowned best male singer at Opera Awards

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The German tenor leads the winners at the inaugural ceremony

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Jonas KaufmannPhoto: Uli Webber

Tenor Jonas Kaufmann (above) took home two awards from the first-ever Opera Awards. He was crowned best Male Singer and also won the ‘Readers’ Award’, voted for by readers of Opera magazine.

The Opera Awards took place at London’s Park Lane Hilton Hotel on 22 April and were attended by 700 people from the industry and press and the ceremony included performances by students from the National Opera Studio.

Winners were announced in 23 categories including soprano Nina Stemme for best female singer, Sir Antonio Pappano for best conductor, soprano Sophie Bevan for best young singer and conductor Daniele Rustioni for best newcomer.

The Metropolitan Opera won the award for Accessibility, which was collected on their behalf by mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato. And Frankfurt Opera came top in the category for best Opera Company.

‘Very few opera companies are immune to the current financial crunch, and in such a climate it’s tempting to play it safe,’ said editor of Opera magazine, John Allison. ‘That, in turn, can spell artistic poverty. But the Awards are celebrating artistic richness – achieved by the risk-takes of our profession – and I’m delighted that the event highlights so many great performances.’

The Opera Awards were founded by businessman Harry Hyman and some of the money generated from the Awards will go towards funding ten bursaries for rising opera stars.