OAF News

Mezzo-Soprano Judith Forst Wins $15,000 Award

Toronto, December 1, 2003 - Vancouver mezzo-soprano Judith Forst is the first winner of the $15,000 Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award for Classical Singing.

Established by Norman Walford, the former Executive Director of the Ontario Arts Council (OAC), and his partner Paul de Hueck, former Production Manager for arts programming at CBC television, the awards recognize career achievement in three artistic disciplines:  keyboard artistry, photography, and classical singing.  These awards are made possible through a fund set up in 1995 at the Ontario Arts Council Foundation (OACF).

The Ontario Arts Council manages the selection process.  The members of this year's jury are: Rosemarie Landry, Head of the Voice Department, L'Université de Montréal; William Littler, arts critic; and Timothy Vernon, conductor.

In choosing Ms. Forst as this year's award recipient, the jury recognized not only her stellar stage career but also her commitment to new composers, fellow performers, directors, and conductors, as well as her mentoring of young professionals and students.  Hailed as ìone of the greatest singing actresses on the contemporary operatic stageî by Time Magazine, Judith Forst has sung with major opera companies throughout North America and Europe, including 17 seasons with the New York Metropolitan Opera. 

Previous winners of the Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award are pianist Robert Silverman in 1998 for keyboard artistry, and photographer Jeff Wall in 2001 for art photography.

Established in 1991 as a public charitable foundation, the OACF manages funds given by individuals to support the arts, and administers the Ontario Government's $50,000,000 Arts Endowment Fund Program.

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For further information, please contact:
Janet Stubbs
Ontario Arts Council Foundation
416-969-7413 / jstubbs@arts.on.ca


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