Today, on Tuesday, 26 singers performed on the first day of the stage II of the XX Ada Sari International Vocal Artistry Competition in Nowy Sącz. Accompanied by the piano, the artists performed three or four pieces, chosen by the jury from a programme given by the participants. Their performances aroused a lot of emotion, as the repertoire required was exceptionally versatile. The presentation in the stage II lasted about 15 minutes, which must have been enough to show off a wide range of musical styles in front of the jury.
Already after the first round of today's auditions, it became clear that the artists were talented. A couple moved the audience and the judges alike with their performance. "I am in amazement at how the Asians have an excellent command of foreign languages. Their diligence should be taken as an example," said Małgorzata Walewska, chairwoman of the jury and Artistic Director of the Competition. "It has always been a problem for foreigners to sing in Polish, and during this edition it turns out that it is not, which is extremely pleased". - explained Beata Klatka, juror of the Competition.

From the backstage conversations, it seems that the variety of repertoire presented in the stage II, was the most difficult for the participants. Every three minutes a different piece, from a different era, in a different style. "Yes, this variety can be a problem, as can singing day after day for some. Young artists also sometimes select their repertoire badly. Sometimes they present songs in a similar style. Or when choosing contemporary songs, especially Asians, they present songs that are closer to a pop style. You can see that some people have trouble with this point in the programme," explained Beata Klatka.

"This stage is not easy. And I suspect it is quite demanding for all of us," said Weronika Rabek, mezzo-soprano, after her performance in the stage II. Does singing in front of a jury stress you out or is it more uplifting? "During the stage I, the jurors were very encouraging. They were focused the whole time, some of them were smiling. I even felt approval. It was the same today, although not the whole time." - she emphasised.

Pianists play an important role in the Competition. They are the support for the vocalists. This year's accompanists for the Competition are: Mirella Malorny-Konopka (in this role for the first time), Manfred Schiebel and Alexander Teliga. "The role of accompanist is extremely important and, above all, responsible. The comfort of the participants in the Competition depends on us. We have a lot of work to do, a lot of preparation, but each young artist deserves attention. It is also about giving the participants encouragement, to show that they can rely on us," said Mirella Malorny-Konopka. "Usually, the singers have their own vision of the piece. Especially the Chinese come with a very precisely planned interpretation. But everyone is stressed by the fact that they have to announce their performance. This is for many worse than singing. I also had this situation. In two contemporary pieces I had to say a few words and that stressed me out the most." - explained the pianist, who accompanied nine people in the stage II.

Tomorrow, on Wednesday, the Song Competition will take place as part of the second stage, with ten participants. And in the evening, the jury will give its second verdict and the finalists of the Competition and the winner in the song category will also be announced. In addition, also tomorrow, we will find out who has been awarded the prize for the outstanding pianist-accompanist of the Competition.

The Ada Sari International Vocal Artistry Competition in Nowy Sącz has been held every two years since 1985. It is organised by the SOKÓŁ Malopolska Cultural Centre in Nowy Sącz, and this year's edition is co-organised by the Kraków Opera.

The competition auditions are streamed online at:

Agnieszka Malatyńska-Stankiewicz
Competition Press Office