The 18th Annual Altamura/Caruso International Voice Competition was recently held in Scorca Hall at the National Opera Center in New York City. Thirteen exceptional young artists gave the competition jury an enormously difficult task of choosing the winners. The illustrious panel of judges included the Metropolitan Opera’s Roger Malouf, who acted as President of the Jury; Lewis Ehlers of Lombardo Artists Management; Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera David J. Jackson; Italian journalist Gilda Bello and competition founder Carmela Altamura.
Soprano Nicolette Mavroleon was awarded first prize in the competition. Second place went to soprano Teresa Castillo and third place produced a tie among the judges and was awarded equally to tenor Woo Young Yoon and soprano Marsha Thompson. The remaining nine finalists all provided excellent renditions and received monetary consolation prizes of $500 each. “This is the highest caliber of contestants that the competition has ever had,” said founder Carmela Altamura.
Total prizes for the competition amounted to $30,000. In addition, the top winners will have the privilege of singing in Imola, Italy, at Sforza Castle, which houses the prestigious Accademia Pianistica University. Monsignor Hilary Franco, Advocate for the Vatican at the United Nations, offered the invocation. After expressing accolades to each of the winners, he invited the artists to perform for the Holy Father at the Vatican.
The winners, accompanied by Carmela Altamura, will be leave for Italy on March 14, 2020. Mrs. Altamura announced that the 18th International Altamura/Caruso Competition will be followed by grants awarded for advanced operatic studies to singers by founders, Carmela and Leonard J. Altamura.