Peter Hulsen Song Award | Southbank Sinfonia

Peter Hulsen Orchestral Song Award

Established in 2008, the Peter Hulsen Orchestral Song Award is a biennial award for outstanding young singers embarking on the profession. While the Kathleen Ferrier Award is for recital with piano and Cardiff Singer of the World for operatic arias, the Peter Hulsen Orchestral Song Award distinctly offers emerging artists a much-valued opportunity to explore the treasures of the orchestral songbook and perform with Southbank Sinfonia, nominated for the 2017 Royal Philharmonic Society Ensemble Award.

The award is named after the late Peter Hulsen, a remarkable music lover and longstanding friend and supporter of Southbank Sinfonia. A native of Breslau, Peter came to England as a boy on one of the last Kindertransport trains out of Germany. In the face of such stark origins in life, he found great consolation in classical music and its enduring spirit manifest in outstanding young artists who may champion it for decades to come. In his lifetime, it was his wish to establish an award offering young voices the opportunity to perform with orchestra, and it has been Southbank Sinfonia’s honour to make this happen every alternate year.

The Award is adjudicated by Southbank Sinfonia Music Director & Principal Conductor Simon Over alongside distinguished specialists who in previous years have included Sir Thomas Allen, Sally Matthews, Della Jones, Susan Gritton and Paul Nilon.

In a live final, Lotte Betts-Dean was named winner of the 2017 Peter Hulsen Orchestral Song Award. As part of the award, Lotte will be an Associate Artist of Southbank Sinfonia for 2018/19.

Previous winners are soprano Soraya Mafi and bass-baritone Bozidar Smiljanic (2015), baritone Gavan Ring (2013), soprano Susanna Hurrell (2011) and baritone Gerard Collett (2009).

Commenting on the Award, soprano Susan Gritton says ‘Orchestral song demands both great artistry and great singing. Listening to these wonderful young singers specifically for orchestral song is a fantastic way to find our great artists of the future.’