Jan Lisiecki (photo: Holger Hage)

Alumni and Honorary Fellows Win 20 Prizes at 2018 JUNO Awards

Alumni and Honorary Fellows of The Royal Conservatory once again dominated the JUNO Awards, winning prizes in more than 45% of all JUNO categories. The awards were given out on March 25 and 26, 2018 at ceremonies in Vancouver.

Twenty artists, groups, ensembles, and orchestras with a Conservatory connection took home JUNO trophies. Among the recipients were internationally acclaimed iconoclasts Arcade Fire (Album of the Year) and jazz icon Diana Krall (Vocal Jazz Album of the Year and Jack Richardson Producer of the Year).

Glenn Gould School alumnus Jan Lisiecki also won a JUNO Award – his first – for his recording of Chopin works with Germany’s NDR Elbphilarhmonie Orchester. He used his acceptance speech to praise the outsized impact of Canadian musicians and the privilege he feels to be a Canadian.  

The presence of Honorary Fellow Gord Downie loomed large throughout the JUNO ceremonies. The legendary artist and activist won three posthumous awards: Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, and Adult Alternative Album of the Year. Sarah Harmer, Kevin Hearn, and City and Colour honoured his legacy with a moving musical tribute.

Eighty alumni and Honorary Fellows of The Royal Conservatory were nominated for 2018 JUNO Awards. The nominations cover a vast array of musical styles, including classical, country, gospel, heavy metal, Indigenous, jazz, pop, rap, rock, roots, and world music.

Many other alumni and Honorary Fellows received special JUNO awards recognizing their contributions to the Canadian music industry as well as their global cultural impact. Arcade Fire accepted the International Achievement Award, while former Sony Music executive Denise Donlon received the Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award. 

The members of the Barenaked Ladies – all of whom are alumni or Honorary Fellows of The Royal Conservatory – were inducted into the Canadian Hall of Fame during the televised JUNO ceremony on Mach 25. Speaking on behalf of the band, member Ed Robertson sent special thanks to their music teachers, stating: “this band would not exist without public music education.” 

Alumni and Honorary Fellows Nominated for 2018 JUNO Awards
(winners in italics)

Alvvays (Kerri McLellan, alumna)
Alternative Album of the Year
Group of the Year

Andrew Downing’s Otterville 
Jazz Album of the Year: Group

ARC Ensemble
Classical Album of the Year: Solo or Chamber

Arcade Fire (Richard Reed Parry, alumnus)
Album of the Year
Alternative Album of the Year
Group of the Year
Single of the Year

Archspire (Jared Smith, alumnus)
Metal/Hard Music Album of the Year

Arion Orchestre Baroque (multiple alumni)
Classical Album of the Year: Large Ensemble

Arkells (Mike De Angelis, Nick Dika and Dan Griffin, alumni)
JUNO Fan Choice Award
Single of the Year

Autorickshaw (Suba Sankaran, alumna)
World Music Album of the Year

Isabel Bayrakdarian (with Coro Vox Aeterna)
Classical Album of the Year: Vocal or Choral

The Beaches (Leandra Earl, alumna)
Breakthrough Group of the Year

Big Wreck (Paula Neta, alumnus)
Rock Album of the Year

Bobs & Lolo (Robyn Hardy and Lorraine Pond, alumnae)
Children’s Album of the Year

David Braid (with Mike Murley, Anders Morgensen, and Johnny Aman)
Jazz Album of the Year: Group

Broken Social Scene (Evan Cranley and Emily Haines, alumni)
Group of the Year

Carn Davidson 9 (Andrew Downing, alumnus)
Jazz Album of the Year: Group

Cassie and Maggie (Cassie Steele, alumna)
Traditional Roots Album of the Year

Brad Cheeseman
Jazz Album of the Year: Solo

Bruce Cockburn
Contemporary Roots Album of the Year

The Color (Jordan Janzen, alumnus)
Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year

Dabin (Dabin Lee, alumnus)
Electronic Album of the Year

Do Make Say Think (Ohad Benchetrit, alumnus)
Instrumental Album of the Year

Gord Downie (Honorary Fellow)
Adult Alternative Album of the Year
Artist of the Year
Songwriter of the Year
(with Kevin Drew)

Matt Dusk
Vocal Jazz Album of the Year

DVBBS (Christopher van der Hoef, alumnus)
Dance Recording of the Year

Ernesto Cervini’s Turboprop
Jazz Album of the Year: Group

Jordan Evans & Matthew Burnett (for Daniel Caesar)
Jack Richardson Producer of the Year 

The Franklin Electric (Jon Matte, alumnus)
Breakthrough Group of the Year

Barbara Hannigan (with Ludgwig Orchestra)
Classical Album of the Year: Vocal or Choral

Tim Hicks
Country Album of the Year

Vincent Ho
Classical Composition of the Year

Shawn Hook
JUNO Fan Choice Award

Ian Ilavsky (nominated for work with Do Make Say Think and Esmerine)
Album Artwork of the Year

David Jalbert
Classical Album of the Year: Solo or Chamber

James Barker Band (Taylor Abram, alumnus)
Breakthrough Group of the Year
Country Album of the Year

Christine Jensen 
Jazz Album of the Year: Group (with Ingrid Jensen)

The Jerry Cans (Gina Burgess, alumna)
Breakthrough Group of the Year
Contemporary Roots Album of the Year

Ben Kaplan
Recording Engineer of the Year

Kobo Town (Drew Gonsalves, alumnus)
World Music Album of the Year

Diana Krall
Jack Richardson Producer of the Year
Vocal Jazz Album of the Year

Ron Lapata and Todd Clark
Songwriters of the Year (with Scott Helman)

Geneviève Lapointe 
Album Artwork of the Year (for The Lost Fingers)

Laurell (with Nick Fioricci)
Dance Recording of the Year

Jan Lisiecki (with NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester)
Classical Album of the Year: Large Ensemble

Love & the Outcome (Jodi King and Chris Rademaker, alumni)
Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year

Maestro Fresh Wes
Rap Recording of the Year

Jocelyn Morlock
Classical Composition of the Year

Jess Moskaluke
Country Album of the Year

John Neufeld
Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year

Nickelback (Ryan Peake, alumnus)
Rock Album of the Year

Peregrine Falls (Gordon Grdina, alumnus)
Instrumental Album of the Year

Buffy Sainte-Marie (Honorary Fellow)
Contemporary Roots Album of the Year
Indigenous Music Album of the Year

Philippe Sly 
Classical Album of the Year: Vocal or Choral (with John Charles Britton)

Splash ‘N Boots (Taes Leavitt, alumna)
Children’s Album of the Year

Steve Strongman
Blues Album of the Year

The Tenors (Victor Micallef, alumnus)
Adult Contemporary Album of the Year

Timber Timbre (Taylor Kirk, alumnus)
Adult Alternative Album of the Year

Shania Twain
Album of the Year
Artist of the Year

Leif Vollebekk
Adult Alternative Album of the Year

Walk Off the Earth (Joel Cassady, alumnus)
JUNO Fan Choice Award

Weaves (Spencer Cole and Bram Gielen, alumni)
Alternative Album of the Year

Whitehorse (Melissa McClelland, alumna)
Adult Alternative Album of the Year

Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (multiple alumni)
Classical Album of the Year: Large Ensemble

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The Royal Conservatory’s Glenn Gould School is supported by funding from the Department of Canadian Heritage through the Canada Arts Training Fund, and from the Ontario Arts Council.

Resounding! The Campaign for The Royal Conservatory, has been launched to celebrate the 20th anniversary of The Glenn Gould School as well as the upcoming 10th anniversary of Koerner Hall. To learn more or donate, visit rcmusic.com/resounding.