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Immanuel Wilkins and Itamar Borochov Are “Rising Stars”

The American saxophonist and Israeli trumpeter take top prizes in LetterOne's fourth annual award presentation

Immanuel Wilkins Omega
Immanuel Wilkins (photo: Rog Walker)

Trumpeter Itamar Borochov and saxophonist Immanuel Wilkins have won the fourth annual LetterOne “Rising Stars” Jazz Awards. The winners were announced in a February 6 livestream ceremony, hosted by Jamie Cullum and broadcast on Newark’s WBGO-FM radio.

Borochov was the winner of the European award, while Wilkins won the North American award.

Sponsored by philanthropist and Leopolis Jazz Festival founder Mikhail Fridman and produced by Air Artist Agency, the LetterOne “Rising Stars” Jazz Award is a juried prize that comprises an all-expenses-paid tour of popular jazz festivals in Europe and North America, including a dedicated promotion and marketing team, at an approximate cash value of US$85,000.

Borochov and Wilkins were among 725 contestants who submitted to the 2021 award. The jury panel included drummer and jury head Terri Lyne Carrington; producer Brian Bacchus; journalist and festival director Alex Dutilh; journalist and author Michelle Mercer; U.K. Guardian senior arts editor Imogen Tilden; and award sponsor Mikhail Fridman.

The global livestream ceremony can be viewed at the WBGO website. Visit the LetterOne “Rising Stars” Jazz Award website for more information.