The Northern Ireland International Organ Competition announced winners of its 2019 competition, held August 19 at St. Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral, Armagh. Ivan-Bogdan Reincke, 21, from Hungary, won first prize. Reincke is a student at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest. The prize includes a £1,500 award and seven public recitals in venues such as St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, New York; Westminster Abbey, London; King’s College, Cambridge; and St. Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast.
Second prize in the senior section, sponsored by Wells-Kennedy Organ Partnership, Lisburn, was awarded to James Anderson-Besant, 20, from Oxfordshire, junior organ scholar at St. John’s College, Cambridge. The prize includes public recitals in Stockholm and Cambridge.
Third prize, including recitals in Paris and Glasgow, went to Joshua Hughes, 20, a student at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. Killian Homburg (Germany) and Jonathan Lee (Australia) were highly commended.
The Dame Gillian Weir Medal, awarded for a performance of one work that the chair of the jury considers to be the most outstanding in the senior category of the competition and sponsored by Allen Organs NI, was awarded to Julia Raasch, 21, a student of the Franz Liszt University of Music in Weimar, Germany. The Bach Prize went to Killian Homburg, 18, of the University of Music and Theatre, Leipzig, Germany.
This year’s competition attracted competitors from six European countries and, for the first time, from the United States and Australia as well as England and Scotland. The jury was chaired by Martin Baker, joined by Katherine Dienes-Williams and David Hill.
The intermediate category of NIIOC 2019, sponsored by John Miley, Organ Club of Great Britain, took place on August 20, also in St Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral, and was won by Julian Becker, 14, from Germany. Second place went to Kamilla Levai, 21, from Hungary, and third place to Chiara Perneker, 17, from Germany.
The junior category, sponsored by Alasdair MacLaughlin, took place in St. Malachy’s Roman Catholic Church, Armagh. This division was won by Adam Suk, 14, from Pardubice, Czech Republic. Gergö Kiss, 12, from Györ, Hungary, was highly commended. For information: www.niioc.com.