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Profeti Della Quinta win the York Early Music International Young Artists Competition

Profeti Della Quinta, vocal ensemble from Israel and Switzerland, has won the prestigious biennial York Early Music International Young Artists Competition organised by the National Centre for Early Music, which culminated on Saturday 16 July as part of the 2011 York Early Music Festival.

The group triumphed over strong competition from a superb line up of 10 ensembles, featuring young musicians from 13 different countries: Le Petit Concert Baroque (France); Quadro Melante (Croatia, Malaysia, Australia and Iran); Sebastian Chamber Players (USA); Borromini String Quartet (UK); Den Haag Piano Quintet (Japan, The Netherlands); Habsburger Camerata (UK, USA, Canada); Encantar (Belgium); Les Ombres (France) and L'Istante (Switzerland).

All 10 ensembles gave their final recitals, which were recorded by BBC Radio 3, in front of the panel of judges comprising: Elizabeth Kenny lutenist; Vivien Ellis, singer; Neal Peres Da Costa, harpsichordist; Philip Hobbs, Linn Records; Christophe Mangé, Director of Printemps des Arts de Nantes and Xavier Vandamme, Director of the Utrecht Early Music Festival. Their decision was unanimous.

Profeti Della Quinta's Doron Schleifer, David Feldman countertenors; Dino Lűthy, Dan Dunkelblum tenors and Elam Rotem bass impressed the judges with a programme entitled 'Hashirim Asher Lish'Lomo: Songs of love and praise' featuring Hebrew settings of psalms and prayers by Rossi and madrigals by De Rore.

The group will receive £1,000 alongside a series of opportunities to work with the National Centre for Early Music and a prestigious recording contract with the award-winning Linn Records.

Highlights of the York Early Music International Young Artists Competition and music from the winner's recital will be broadcast on BBC Radio 3's Early Music Show on Sunday 25 September 2011 at 1.00pm.

At the end of the competition, Philip Hobbs, Linn Records Chief Classical Producer, and Chairman of the Judges, said: "We have been privileged to enjoy a truly astonishing day of music-making from these young artists and were thrilled to bits with the diversity and invention of their programmes which offered the audience an extraordinary sweep of music from the 13th through to the 19th century.

"Choosing a winner was inordinately hard from this superb field but in the end we came to a unanimous decision. Profeti Della Quinta's stunning authentic performance practice and quality of execution was truly magnificent. It is always exciting to witness young musicians at the start of what will doubtless become illustrious careers and we wish all these young artists the successes they richly deserve."

The Competition was presented by Elizabeth Wallfisch, the internationally renowned Australian Baroque violinist, who added: "It has been a very interesting process which has seen an extremely high calibre of playing throughout. All the competitors have commented on the style and set up of this unique competition which provides these young artists with the opportunity to explore the space, atmosphere and audience under the same performance conditions prior to the actual competition itself. The National Centre for Early Music's partnership with BBC Radio 3 is a further fabulous opportunity for the young artists to learn about their performance and be heard on a national platform."

Delma Tomlin, Director of the National Centre for Early Music said: "We were delighted by the unprecedented number and standard of applicants for this year's Competition and have been very impressed by the high standards of musicianship and presentation which the ten finalists have displayed across the three day competition.

"All the competitors have enthused about the overall experience of the Competition, which they feel has provided them with valuable and highly professional advice across all the performing disciplines in the nurturing and encouraging environment which our audiences at the NCEM are renowned for creating. We wish them all the success they very much deserve in their future careers."

The next York Early Music International Young Artists Competition will take place in 2013 as part of the York Early Music Festival. Outline information will be available in the autumn on the National Centre for Early Music website at:

The Competition is supported by the National Centre for Early Music, BBC Radio 3 and Arts Council England, Yorkshire.


Press Contact:  Shona Galletly
T: 07813 796 733

Notes to Editors:

1. Profeti Della Quinta - Winners of the 2011 York Early Music International Young Artists Competition Doron Schleifer, David Feldman countertenors 
Dino L├╝thy, Dan Dunkelblum tenors 
Elam Rotem bass Profeti Della Quinta was founded in 2002 in the Galilee region of Israel and is currently based in Switzerland, where all its members undertook further study at the Schola Cantorum in Basel. The core of five male singers is also supplemented with instrumentalists and additional singers as required. Focusing on repertoire from the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, the group has been active in researching and performing hitherto neglected repertoire, such as Emilio de' Cavalieri's Lamentations (1600) and Salomone Rossi's Hashirim asher li'Shlomo (1622-3), the first publication of polyphony in Hebrew, which they recorded on PAN Classics to critical acclaim. The ensemble has performed in various festivals and venues in Europe and Israel, and future projects include concerts with Lautten Compagnye in Germany, as well as with the Jerusalem Baroque Orchestra in Israel.

2. The York Early Music International Young Artists Competition was created by the Early Music Network in 1985. Previous winners are:  1985 Paul Goodwin (oboe) and Nicholas Parle (harpsichord); 1987 The Locke Consort; 1989 Joint winners:  I Fagiolini and Musikfreunde (renamed Florilegium); 1991 The Palladian Ensemble; 1993 Mhairi Lawson (soprano) and Olga Tverskaya (fortepiano); 1995 The Amarillis Consort; 1997 Voce Poetica; 1999 The Private Music; 2001 Apollo and Pan; 2003 Savadi; 2005 ensemble Fidicinium; 2007 Le Jardin Secret and 2009 Ensemble Meridiana.

3. York Early Music Festival is supported by the Arts Council England, Yorkshire, Media partner BBC Radio 3, the National Centre for Early Music, Tourism partners Welcome to Yorkshire, the City of York Council and members of the York Hoteliers Association.