2023 RPS Awards shortlists revealed
26 Jan 2023
We are delighted to announce the shortlists for the RPS Awards – billed by BBC Radio 3 as ‘the BAFTAs of classical music’ – and invite you to join us for the event on 1 March, with tickets from only £10.
The Royal Philharmonic Society Awards celebrate classical musicians nationwide, shining a light on brilliant individuals, groups and initiatives inspiring communities across the UK. Featuring star soloists, local heroes and amateur musicians, this year’s shortlists reflect the far-reaching and resounding impact that classical music has nationally.
This year we are presenting the Awards on the biggest stage yet – at London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall on Wednesday 1 March – with tickets from only £10 so music-lovers can come and be part of the experience. Cello sensation Sheku Kanneh-Mason will give a special guest performance. Please bring friends and colleagues and help us to spread the word. For more information and to book tickets, click here.
- Shortlisted initiatives highlight the social and emotional benefits of music, including Manchester Camerata’s powerful film Untold - Keith, the story of someone living with dementia who finds comfort and company through music; digital venture Opera-tic creatively empowering those living with Tourette Syndrome; and Joe Cutler’s Concerto Grosso written for disabled musicians to perform centre-stage with Gateshead’s Royal Northern Sinfonia.
- Nominees showcase outstanding music-making across the country, notably from the North East (Sheffield’s Ensemble 360, Leeds Piano Trail, Ryedale Festival, and Bradford Festival Choral Society), the North West (Manchester Collective and Manchester Camerata), Scotland (Aberdeenshire’s Sound Festival and Scottish Opera) and Wales (Côr CF1 and Tredegar Town Band).
- Among the star names nominated this year are the cellist Abel Selaocoe, violinist Elena Urioste, soprano Lise Davidsen, and composer Thomas Adès.
- The UK’s constellation of amateur groups is also celebrated with the Inspiration Award, the winner of which will be decided by a public vote from a shortlist comprising Bradford Festival Choral Society, Côr CF1, Torbay Symphony Orchestra, Tredegar Town Band, and community music director Ula Weber. You can discover more about the nominees and cast your vote here on the RPS website by 10am on Wednesday 1 February.
- 27% of the individual performers and composers nominated are people of colour, in addition to the transnational ensemble Tangram which celebrates Chinese cultures, nominated for the Young Artist Award.
- Much in the news lately, the English National Opera receives two nominations, for their Music Director Martyn Brabbins, and their acclaimed production of The Handmaid’s Tale.
The event, which will also feature performances from some of this year’s nominees, will be hosted by BBC Radio 3 presenters Hannah French and Petroc Trelawny with trophies presented by RPS Chairman John Gilhooly. It will be filmed to watch on the RPS website at a later date, and BBC Radio 3 will present a special broadcast featuring music of the winners and nominees at 7pm on Monday 6 March.
RPS Chief Executive James Murphy says: ‘With much recent reportage about funding cuts to the arts, what a story we have to share about classical musicians’ creativity, generosity and resilience. The RPS Awards shortlists represent thousands of musicians who devote their lives to uplifting, inspiring and uniting communities nationwide. We’re newly presenting the RPS Awards at the same time of year as the BAFTAs and BRITs, as classical musicians deserve as much recognition as pop acts and movie stars. Tickets have never been cheaper, from only £10, so we warmly invite music-lovers to come and be part of the festivities and help us make some noise.’
The RPS Awards can only happen thanks to a range of dedicated supporters. The RPS is especially grateful to this year’s Principal Supporters – BBC Radio 3, ABRSM, PRS for Music, Yamaha, and BBC Music Magazine – and those who support individual awards as detailed below.
supported by Boosey & Hawkes in memory of Tony Fell
Bára Gísladóttir Animals of your pasture
Ben Nobuto SERENITY 2.0
Thomas Adès Alchymia
supporter to be announced
supported by Wise Music Group in its 50th anniversary year
supported by OUP Music in its centenary year
Awards for Young Musicians
Opera-tic – Second Movement
The Endz – The Multi-Story Orchestra
supported by Warner Classics
Bradford Festival Choral Society
Torbay Symphony Orchestra
Tredegar Town Band
supported by Lark Music
Abel Selaocoe - cello
Adam Walker - flute
Elena Urioste - violin
supported by The Boltini Trust
Gavin Higgins Concerto Grosso for Brass Band and Orchestra
George Lewis Minds in Flux
Joe Cutler Concerto Grosso
Rebecca Saunders To an utterance
Opera and Music Theatre
supported by Jenny Hodgson
Bluebeard’s Castle – Theatre of Sound and Opera Ventures
Orfeo – Garsington Opera
The Handmaid’s Tale – English National Opera
Series and Events
supported by Decca
Leeds Piano Trail
Oxford Lieder Festival
supported by ISM, the Independent Society of Musicians
Anna Dennis soprano
Lise Davidsen soprano
Lucy Schaufer mezzo soprano
supported by Schott Music
Sound Within Sound – Kate Molleson
The Great Passion – James Runcie
Untold: Keith – Manchester Camerata
supported by Sir Simon and Victoria, Lady Robey OBE
Nardus Williams - soprano
Timothy Ridout - viola
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