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Latvian Vocalist Arta Jekabsone Wins 2016 Shure Montreux Jazz Voice Competition

This year 164 entrants took part in the annual competition promoting young vocalists, with 10 semi-finalists performing in Montreux before an international jury

By PSW Staff August 5, 2016

Latvian vocalist Arta Jekabsone (right), winner of the 2016 Shure Montreux Jazz Voice competition.

The annual Shure Montreux Jazz Voice competition promotes and nurtures young vocalists around the world, with Latvian vocalist Arta Jekabsone named this year’s winner at the 2016 finals in July at the Petit Theìâtre at Montreux Palace during the Montreux Jazz Festival.

A former violin student and graduate of the Riga Choir cathedral school in the Latvian capital, Jekabsone is currently studying on a scholarship at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York.

She says that she tried to make her winning performance at the competition as personal as possible, as she explained in an interview: “When I was thinking about the concept of what to sing, for me the first condition was: be yourself. I chose the songs where I felt a connection.”

This year, 164 entrants took part, with 10 semi-finalists performing in Montreux before an international jury of singers, composers, and journalists, and presided over by Beninese singer/songwriter Angélique Kidjo. Three contestants were chosen for the finals: Fabio Giacalone of Italy, Erik Leuthäuser of Germany, and Jekabsone.

All three of the 2016 finalists will take home Shure products of their choice with a value of 2,000 Euros each, along with other prizes.

“Shure has been a proud sponsor of the Montreux Jazz Voice competition since 2003,” says Nils Proesser, marketing director for Shure Europe. “Every year, the finalists’ interpretations and performances are a delight to behold. This year’s finalists were no exception.” 



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