SUPPORT OUR JOURNALISM: Please consider donating to keep our website running and free for all - thank you!


Queen Sonja attends final of the Queen Sonja International Music Competition

On Friday of last week, Her Majesty Queen Sonja congratulated Russian baritone Sergey Kaydalov who emerged victorious from the final of the Queen Sonja International Music Competition 2019. The competition’s final was held in the opera in Oslo, and it was Her Majesty the Queen who presented the prize to the winner.

Six talented soloists were on stage during the finale. Kaydalov won with his interpretation of Giuseppe Verdi and Pietro Mascagni and was able to receive the prize of 50,000 euros and a print signed and made by Her Majesty Queen Sonja. The entire grand finale was streamed directly over the music prize’s Facebook page, in addition, to live broadcast on NRK radio.

Photo: Sven Gj. Gjeruldsen, Det kongelige hoff

A record number of 304 singers from 50 different nations wanted to participate in this year’s competition. After several preliminary rounds, 33 participants went to the semi-finals. Six talented singers reached the final in the opera.

None of the Norwegian participants reached the final this year, but the mezzo-soprano Astrid Nordstad from Trondheim reached the semi-finals and Ingrid Bjoners Stipend was announced as the competition’s best Norwegian participant.

Photo: Sven Gj. Gjeruldsen, Det kongelige hoff

On Tuesday last week, Queen Sonja also participated in one of the semi-finals held at the Oscarshall Palace outside Oslo. Four of the competition’s semi-finalists performed in front of a crowded hall. The audience heard performances from operas such as Don Pasquale and La fille du regiment. In advance of the concert, the Queen met the four semi-finalists who have participated in this year’s music competition.

The Queen Sonja International Music Competition is held every two years and took place for the fifteenth time in 2019. The participants were mainly newly graduated singers at the start of a career in opera and classical music. The goal of the competition is to help young talents for a future career. It is also a bridge-builder between Norwegian and international music.

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written five books on historical subjects and more than 700 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.