Tuesday, 2 June 2015
Genesis Sixteen celebrates 5 years with 100th student and highest ever numbers of applicants from state schools
The Sixteen have announced the 100th successful applicant for the ‘Genesis Sixteen’ choral training programme in a year with the highest ever proportion of young singers from state school backgrounds.
Genesis Sixteen is the UK’s only fully funded programme of its kind. Those accepted onto the scheme, by competitive audition, benefit from coaching from Harry Christophers, associate conductor Eamonn Dougan and members of The Sixteen.
This year’s cohort includes students from Bristol, York, Durham, Manchester, KCL, Edinburgh, St Andrews, Royal Holloway and Cambridge Universities as well as conservatoires including Royal Academy of Music, Royal Northern College of Music, Trinity Laban and Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. 73% come from state schools and 27% from public schools.
Harry Christophers said:
“When we first set up this scheme, with the generous support of the Genesis Foundation, it was one of our ambitions to open it up to all talented young choral singers from a range of backgrounds and experiences. We want to play our part in contributing to a more socially and culturally diverse professional music scene, so the statistics on this year’s applicants are very encouraging. We are incredibly proud of the achievements of all our Genesis Sixteen singers, past, present and future.”
John Studzinski said:
“I’m delighted that this year’s intake of young singers to Genesis Sixteen shows a majority coming from the state education sector. One of the founding core-beliefs of the Genesis Foundation is that access to great training and mentoring shouldn’t be confined to those from privileged backgrounds. Genesis Sixteen has established itself as an invaluable scheme whose graduates are now performing across the country, forming their own ensembles and signing recording deals. Such continued success shows how Genesis Sixteen identified and answered a real gap in training for young singers. I’m thrilled to welcome the 100th successful applicant!”
The first course for Genesis Sixteen 5 will be 24-30 August 2015 at Magdalen College in Oxford. There is a film about the most recent Genesis Sixteen 4 course, including a masterclass with Sarah Connolly, here.
Genesis Sixteen 4 will have a number of performances this summer including:
Cheltenham Composers’ Academy Residency
Genesis Sixteen and Eamonn Dougan will work with six composers, as part of Cheltenham Festival, on new works culminating in public premieres of the pieces.
BBC Ten Pieces event at Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace
The Sixteen are championing the BBC Ten Pieces initiative with partners Handel House Museum and the Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace. A project based on Handel’s Zadok the Priest will involve 300 Year 5 pupils from nine schools across London, culminating in a special event at the Chapel Royal with a choir comprising nine members of Genesis Sixteen and nine members of The Sixteen, with choristers of the Chapel Royal, conducted by Eamonn Dougan and Robbie Jacobs (Genesis Sixteen conducting scholar).
Sounds Sublime Festival
Genesis Sixteen 4 will give the lunchtime concert, conducted by Harry Christophers and Eamonn Dougan, at the second annual Sounds Sublime Festival in central London. Spaces at both St Martin in the Fields and The National Gallery will host snapshot concerts, pop-up performances, recitals, family events and singing workshops.
Full programme to be announced shortly.
Final concert of Genesis Sixteen 4
A final celebration takes place in the Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace
Genesis Sixteen is The Sixteen’s free young artists’ scheme which aims to nurture the next generation of talented ensemble singers. During the course of a year, a series of week-long and weekend courses are led by key figures from The Sixteen, including founder and conductor Harry Christophers and associate conductor Eamonn Dougan.
Participants receive group tuition, individual mentoring and masterclasses run by some of the industry’s top vocal experts. Thanks to a close partnership with the Genesis Foundation participants not only receive free tuition but also a bursary to cover all additional costs. This is the UK’s first ever fully funded programme of its kind and alumni from the first three years have already had much success since graduating. Many are now performing, recording and touring with professional groups, including The Sixteen. A number of them have set up their own choirs and are showing true entrepreneurialism in developing their brand and reputation on the music circuit.
After 35 years of worldwide performance and recording, The Sixteen is recognised as one of the world’s greatest ensembles. Comprising both choir and period-instrument orchestra, The Sixteen’s total commitment to the music it performs is its greatest distinction. A special reputation for performing early English polyphony, masterpieces of the Renaissance, bringing fresh insights into Baroque and early Classical music and a diversity of 20th and 21st-century music, is drawn from the passions of its conductor and founder Harry Christophers CBE.
The Genesis Foundation is a UK-based charitable foundation established by John Studzinski in 2001. Through its partner programmes, the Foundation enables prestigious, progressive organisations in the fields of theatre, music and visual arts to nurture the careers of outstanding young artists, developing their talents and giving them access to influential mentors and valuable networks. The Genesis Foundation runs dedicated programmes with the Royal Court, The Sixteen, Welsh National Opera and the Young Vic, and supports graduate and post-graduate training programmes at LAMDA and the Royal College of Art.