Chamber Ensemble of the Year Award

The Zelkova String Quartet has been awarded the 2012 Christopher Rowland RNCM Chamber Ensemble of the Year Award.

Zelkova, comprising violinists Caroline Pether and Simran Sing, violist Rhiannon James and cellist Rachel Shakespeare, recently won the Hirsch Prize for Beethoven chamber music and performed the second movement, Adagio affettuoso ed appassionato, of Beethoven’s String Quartet Op 18 No 1 in F major.

They now have the opportunity to perform at the 2013 RNCM Chamber Music Festival and at St John's, Smith Square, London.

On winning the competition, Caroline said: ‘We were delighted to win the award as we have worked very hard over the last couple of years and it was especially fitting that we won playing Beethoven’s Op 18 No 1 as that is the piece we have worked most intensively on.

'We were also very pleased to receive the Audience Prize as we understand the importance of winning over the audience and communicating the music successfully.’

The competition, which featured seven RNCM chamber ensembles, all previous prize-winners at the College, took place at the RNCM Concert Hall and was adjudicated by Lynne Dawson, Head of Vocals Studies, and violinist Richard Ireland.

Dr Christopher Rowland was the founder and artistic director of the internationally acclaimed RNCM Chamber Music Festival and Director of Chamber Music at the RNCM from 1984–2007. Chris loved and cared for every student at the RNCM, believing in each person’s individuality and potential, and he dedicated his life to teaching and nurturing RNCM students. He was the brainchild behind some of the UK’s most established chamber music ensembles and single-handedly put chamber music at the RNCM on the international map.

Profits from tickets sold for tonight’s RNCM Chamber Ensemble of the Year Award will go into the Christopher Rowland International Masterclass Fund, established by Chris, for the ongoing benefit of all RNCM students, ensuring the continued tradition of inspirational teaching at the College.

To make a gift to this Fund, please call 0161 907 5338 or email [email protected]

11 June 2012