The 2020 Salomon Prize was awarded onstage to Jane Mitchell, Principal Flute and Creative Director of Aurora Orchestra.
The Prize was presented onstage to Jane at Saffron Hall in Essex on 9 September 2020, in one of Aurora Orchestra's first live performances since lockdown began.
The awarding panel, which comprises leading figures working in classical music, said:
‘Jane Mitchell is a distinct creative force and catalyst at the heart of Aurora Orchestra’s programming, presentation and performance. She continually pushes the boundaries of the orchestra’s work, developing a fresh artistic blueprint which has transformed the expectations of audiences and players, all the while sustaining the highest musical quality. Particularly through her curation of Aurora’s strand for young people, Far Far Away, as well as their Orchestral Theatre series – including last summer’s immersive and thrillingly theatrical accounts of Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique – Jane has achieved remarkable feats and created wildly innovative and imaginative ways of experiencing classical music. The respect and support she has from her colleagues is evident in their nomination, which said “Much of Jane’s work happens unheralded behind the scenes. Though Jane is never someone to seek out the limelight, her commitment, drive and creativity have made Aurora the orchestra it is today.”’
In considering entries for the prize from across the UK, the panel also made special commendation of Katherine Wren, viola player with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Alongside her active involvement in all aspects of orchestral life, Katherine devised and delivered Nordic Viola, a project designed both to create and share music with people in remote reaches of the North Atlantic – a fulfilling new experience for players that has forged lasting links with these communities. The panel said ‘the positive energy and passionate curiosity Katherine brings to the orchestra is inspirational and engaging to all who know and work with her; as one colleague puts it, “She inspires just by being herself.”’
The 2020 Salomon Prize was kindly supported by musicalchairs, the world’s leading online recruitment resource for classical music professionals and students.