Vancouver Chamber Choir Artistic Director and Conductor Jon Washburn been named the recipient of the Michael Korn Founders Award for Development of the Professional Choral Art. The North American award, presented by Chorus America, honours an individual with a lifetime of significant contributions to choral music.
Washburn is recognized internationally for his mastery of choral technique and interpretation and travels widely as a guest conductor, lecturer, clinician and master teacher. He is also an active composer, arranger and editor and has had many compositions published, performed and recorded around the world.
Founded by Washburn in 1971, the Vancouver Chamber Choir is now one of Canada's national treasures; a professional vocal ensemble noted for its diverse repertoire and performing excellence.
"It's one that means a lot to me, because it's from my peers and it represents the cause that I've been so avid about for 45 years," said Washburn in a press release. "My friend Michael Korn and I shared the passion for professional choirs and worked together in the early days of Chorus America. He was a larger-than-life icon. It's a special honour to receive the award with his name on it."
Chorus America established this Honorary Citation in 1978. Michael Korn was one of the founders of the organization and its first president. He founded The Philadelphia Singers in 1972 and was also the associate conductor and chorus master of the Opera Company of Philadelphia. He received the award in 1986 and, following his death at age 44, it was renamed in his honour.
The award will be presented to Washburn on June 12 during Chorus America's annual conference in Washington, DC.