The competition will be judged by a distinguished international jury
Bart Demuyt (BE) is Director of the Alamire Foundation and of AMUZ (Antwerp). Initially he pursued careers both as a musicologist and professional singer with renowned ensembles such as Collegium Vocale Gent, Capilla Flamenca, La Chapelle Royale de Paris and La Petite Bande. He successively became a member of the artistic team of Musica, Impulscentrum voor Muziek, General Director of the Flanders Festival Musica Antiqua Brugge and Artistic Director of Concertgebouw Brugge.
He is the Chair of the Arts Flanders Advice Committee, the Director and former Chair of REMA (European Early Music Network), the founder of the Huis van de Polyfonie and the Library of Voices, and curator of the international travelling exhibition, ‘Petrus Alamire, Polyphony in the Picture’ and the festival ‘Voices of Passion’ in Leuven. Since 2023 he is member of the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and Art.
Philip Hobbs (UK) is Chief Producer for Linn Records Ltd. He has worked as a recording engineer and producer for more than 30 years. He has recorded many of the world’s leading artists and ensembles, from Jon Lord and Sir Paul McCartney to Richard Rodney Bennet and Kenny Barron, but a great deal of his work has been in the area of historically informed performance, and he has enjoyed long collaborations with many renowned ensembles including The Dunedin Consort, The Tallis Scholars and Phantasm.
His recent projects include Handel’s La Resurrezione with The English Concert under Harry Bicket, Bach Cantatas BWV 32,82 & 106 with John Butt and The Dunedin Consort and Das Wohltemperierte Klavier book II with Trevor Pinnock. In 2020 he was appointed Visiting Professor of Recording at the Royal Academy of Music.
Elizabeth Kenny (UK) is one of Europe’s leading lute players. Her playing has been described as “incandescent” (Music and Vision), “radical” (The Independent on Sunday) and “indecently beautiful” (Toronto Post). As well as an extensive discography of duo and chamber collaborations, she has played with many of the world’s best period instrument groups, including extended spells with Les Arts Florissants and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Kenny has an interest in seventeenth century music which she pursues with her group Theatre of the Ayre.
Notable recording projects include John Blow’s Venus and Adonis (Wigmore Live, 2011). The Masque of Moments (Linn, 2017) and C17 Playlist, with tenor Ed Lyon (Delphian). Elizabeth also appears alongside Ian Bostridge on Warner Classic’s Shakespeare Songs, which won a 2017 Grammy Award for ‘Best Classical Solo Vocal Album’. She been Professor of Lute at the Royal Academy of Music since 1999, and Dean of Students since 2020. These days her main focus is on solo and song recitals.
Lionel Meunier (FR/BE) is an internationally renowned conductor and bass, and the founder and artistic director of the Gramophone award-winning Belgian vocal ensemble Vox Luminis. He is widely regarded as one of the most dynamic and highly acclaimed artistic leaders in the fields of historical performance and choral music active today.
Alongside his leadership of Vox Luminis’ performing and recording activities, as a guest conductor Lionel has worked with Netherlands Bach Society, Danish National Vocal Ensemble, Netherlands Chamber Choir, Salzburg Bach Choir, and the Boston Early Music Festival Collegium and has led projects with Vox Luminis in collaboration with Orchestra B’Rock, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Freiburg Baroque Orchestra and Consort, and L’Achéron, among many others. His 23/24 season includes performances all over Europe and North America with Vox Luminis and residencies at Conservatorium Amsterdam and CNSMD Paris with performances of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio and St. John Passion.
Emily Worthington (UK) is a period clarinettist and Lecturer in Historical Performance Practices at the University of York. She trained at the University of York, Royal College of Music (London) and Abbaye aux Dames de Saintes (France). She is much in demand as a guest principal with orchestras including the Academy of Ancient Music (UK), Orchestra of the 18th Century (NL) and Anima Eterna Brugge (BE). Emily also co-founded Boxwood & Brass, a historical ‘Harmonie’ specializing in Classical and Romantic wind repertoire (‘dazzlingly persuasive’ - BBC Music Magazine).
Emily’s research interests include British and German performance practices and cultures 1770-1930, and her current AHRC-funded project focusses on the mid-19th century clarinetist Carl Baermann. Her writing has appeared in Music & Letters and books published by Oxford University Press and Routledge, as well as numerous magazines, CD booklets and concert programmes.
Steven Devine (Master of Ceremonies for the competition) combines a career as a conductor and director of orchestral, choral and opera repertoire with that of a solo harpsichordist and fortepianist. He is Conductor and Artistic Advisor of The English Haydn Festival; Music Director of New Chamber Opera, Oxford and Director of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment’s “Bach the Universe & Everything” series.
On the concert and opera platform he has directed and played with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Trondheim Barokk, the Norwegian Wind Ensemble, the Victoria Baroque Players, British Columbia, and Arion Baroque Ensemble, Montreal, among others. He has recorded over thirty discs with other artists and ensembles and made many solo recordings, including a critically acclaimed recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations (Chandos Records).