Finalists in Naxos Recording Competition Announced

12 Jul 2011

(SEATTLE, WA)—Early Music America, the national service organization for the field of early music, is pleased to announce five finalists in the Naxos Recording Competition it is co-sponsoring with the Naxos label. The purpose of this competition is to promote the career development of new and emerging early music ensembles, and the prize is a debut commercial CD recording, which will be produced and marketed by Naxos. The finalists were selected by an independent panel of three judges from a pool of 45 second-round applications and over 100 preliminary applications received in February 2011. The finalists’ materials will now be reviewed by Klaus Heymann and his colleagues at Naxos, and a winner selected by the end of the summer. Read more about the Naxos Recording Competition.

The finalists (in alphabetical order) are:

  • Agave Baroque. Aaron Westman and David Wilson, violins; Shirley Hunt and Josh Lee, violas da gamba; JungHae Kim, harpsichord; Daniel Zuluaga, theorbo; Kevin Cooper, guitar. This dynamic young ensemble (formed in 2007) is based in the San Francisco Bay area and proposes to record a program of works from Heinrich Biber’s 1680 collection Mensa Sonora.
  • Armonia Celeste. Sarah Griffiths and Rebecca Beasley, sopranos; Dianna Grabowski, mezzo-soprano; Lyle Nordstrom, theorbo; Paula Fagerberg, harp. This ensemble formed in 2008 after a festival performance in Bolivia, and has performed primarily in Texas and Oklahoma. Their proposed program is “Udite amanti--Lovers Beware!” which features 17th-century music from the Barberini court in Rome by Rossi, Carissimi, and others.
  • Recordare. Vincent Lauzer and Alexa Raine-Wright, recorders; Camille Paquette-Roy, cello; Mark Edwards, keyboards. This young ensemble formed in 2010 at McGill University in Montreal. They propose to record a program of works by Giuseppe Sammartini (1695-1750).
  • Sebastian Chamber Players. Daniel Lee, Johanna Novom, and Alexander Woods, violins; Ezra Seltzer, cello; and Avi Stein, harpsichord. This ensemble, founded in 2001, features players trained at Juilliard and Yale and is based in Connecticut. Their program consists of works for 3 violins and continuo by Schmelzer, Purcell, Buonamente, and others.
  • Wayward Sisters. Anne Timberlake, recorder; Beth Wenstrom, violin; Anna Steinhoff, cello; and John Lenti, theorbo. This ensemble, which debuted in 2009, proposes a program titled "The Naughty List: Music by Braggarts, Hotheads, Curmudgeons, and Snobs,” with music by Castello, Locke, Merula, and others.

About Early Music America Early Music America serves and strengthens the early music community in North America and raises public awareness of early music. EMA was founded in 1985 and provides its 3,000 members with publications, advocacy, and technical support. EMA publishes the quarterly magazine Early Music America. “Early music” includes western music from the Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, and Classical periods, performed on period instruments in historically-informed styles. For more information, contact Early Music America at 206-720-6270 or 888-SACKBUT, or visit our web site at www.earlymusic.org.

Contact: Patrick Nugent (206) 720-6270 or 888-SACKBUT info@earlymusic.org; www.earlymusic.org