Cardiff Singer of the World: Jamie Barton wins top prize

Jamie Barton was one of five finalists on Sunday night
Image caption Jamie Barton was one of five finalists on Sunday night

A mezzo-soprano from the United States has been crowned the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World.

Jamie Barton beat four other finalists at St David's Hall in the city to win the trophy along with a £15,000 prize.

She said after Sunday night's win: "It's a complete privilege and honour."

On Friday, she also won the contest's world song prize, which is given to the best performer of art song, folk song or lieder, with piano accompaniment.

The main prize, by comparison, sees singers perform their own choice of opera and concert works with a symphony orchestra.

Barton, who is from Georgia, competed against Italian soprano Teresa Romano, Croatian bass baritone Marko Mimica, Argentinian mezzo soprano Daniela Mack, and Ukranian soprano Olena Tokar.

After being named winner, she was awarded the trophy by competition patron and judge, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.

"I can't believe I've won both the main prize and the song prize - it's a complete privilege and honour," she said.

"The competition has been an incredible experience and I'll hold very fond memories of my time in Cardiff."

She chose pieces by Cilea, Humperdinck, Sibelius and Berlioz for the final.

English tenor Ben Johnson won the £2,000 Dame Joan Sutherland audience award.

BBC Cardiff Singer of the World, now in its 30th year, is organised by BBC Cymru Wales in association with Welsh National Opera and supported by the Cardiff council.

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