The first awards of the City Music Foundation, which aims to help performers at the beginning of their careers, have been announced.
Six soloists and two groups have been selected: cellist Mikhail Nemtsov, recorder player Miriam Nerval, saxophonist Alastair Penman, violinist Mari Poll, harpist Claire Iselin, pianist Cordelia Williams, folk band Bridie Jackson & The Arbour, and alternative-folk group Tir Eolas.
Each will receive a grant of between £7,000 and £15,000 which they may use for venue hire, publicity, commercial recording, mentoring, or for assistance with introductions to music agents.
For each City Music Foundation artist a programme will be arranged that consists of a series of concerts, mentorship from experienced performers and industry experts, and marketing and PR support. The foundation will work with several City-based institutions, including the Barbican, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London Symphony Orchestra, City of London Festival and the Worshipful Company of Musicians.
The foundation will support individuals or small groups in classical, jazz, folk and world music genres and aims to have a grant programme of a minimum of £100,000 per year from 2014.
It was founded by Roger Gifford, Lord Mayor of the City of London, with his wife Clare. It is the primary beneficiary of the 2013 Lord Mayor’s Appeal.
The 2013 judging panel was made up of Ian Ritchie, former director of the City of London Festival, trumpeter Alison Balsom, Nash Ensemble pianist Ian Brown, violinist Levon Chilingirian, jazz producer John Cumming, jazz singer Jacqui Dankworth, ABRSM chief executive Leslie East, Potton Hall studio proprietor Jeremy Hayes, Serious director David Jones, Intermusica managing director Stephen Lumsden, jazz saxophonist Andy Panayi, former Master of the Worshipful Company of Musicians Andrew Parmley, soprano Joan Rodgers CBE, and jazz pianist and composer Charlie Wood.
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