17th January: BBC Music Magazine Awards, Rebecca Saunders wins Ernst von Siemens prize, Plácido Domingo awarded International Opera Awards fellowship

Thursday 17th January 2019

BBC Music Magazine reveals nominees for 2019 Awards

The nominations for the 2019 BBC Music Magazine Awards have now been revealed, with 21 of the best classical recordings from over the past year chosen by an expert jury.

The discs were selected from the 200 recordings awarded five stars by our critics in the last 12 months. Voting is now open to the public, so you can choose your favourite recordings from seven categories: Orchestral, Instrumental, Chamber, Choral, Vocal, Opera and Concerto.

A huge number of Debussy recordings were released in 2018 in celebration of the composer’s centenary, and the best of these are reflected in this year’s Awards shortlist. In the Instrumental category, Alexander Melnikov is nominated with his recordings of Book 2 of Debussy’s Préludes and the much-loved La Mer, in which Melnikov is joined by Olga Pashchenko. Melnikov appears again playing Debussy in the Chamber category, alongside other leading musicians including Isabelle Faust and Jean-Guihen Queyras in a selection of late works by the French composer.

[via BBC Music Magazine]

Ernst von Siemens Musikpreis 2019 an Rebecca Saunders

Der internationale Ernst von Siemens Musikpreis geht 2019 an die britische Komponistin Rebecca Saunders. Die Auszeichnung für ein Leben im Dienste der Musik ist mit 250.000 Euro dotiert.

Die 1967 in London geborene Komponistin Rebecca Saunders beschrieb ihre Arbeit einmal als einen Versuch, Klänge aus einer Oberfläche scheinbarer Stille zu lösen und zu formen. Wie gut ihr das gelingt, davon legen über 60 bemerkenswerte Werke nahezu aller Gattungen, die eindrucksvolle internationale Liste an Musikern und Klangkörpern, mit denen sie zusammenarbeitet, sowie die bedeutenden Preise und Auszeichnungen beredtes Zeugnis ab.

Insgesamt vergibt die Stiftung 2019 rund 3,5 Millionen Euro an Preis- und Fördergeldern. Gefördert werden 2019 weltweit rund 120 Projekte im zeitgenössischen Musikbereich.

[via NMZ]

British composer Rebecca Saunders has been awarded the 2019 international Ernst von Siemens prize. The award is given for lifelong service to music and is accompanied by a prize of 250,000 euros. 

The Board of Trustees described Saunders’ work as leaving a ‘visible and meaningful mark on contemporary music history through its astonishingly nuanced attention to timbre, and her distinctive and intensely striking sonic language’. Saunders is the first female composer to win the prize.

[via Rhinegold]

Plácido Domingo awarded honorary fellowship of the International Opera Awards

Tenor Plácido Domingo will receive the first ever honorary fellowship of the Opera Awards Foundation. He will be presented with the fellowship during a fundraising evening held at the Royal Society of Arts, London.

The evening will comprise of an illustrated talk, The Domingo Phenomenon, from his biographer Helena Matheopoulous, who will then invite Domingo on stage for a Q&A session.

Domingo said: ‘Luke in the New Testament says: “To whom much is given, much is expected.” This is a sentiment that is very important to me as I believe all artists have a duty to mentor and support young talent.

‘As the founder of the Operalia Competition and named Young Artist programmes at Washington National Opera, Los Angeles Opera and in Valencia, I have always made the promotion of young singers one of the most important things I do.

‘I’m delighted that the Opera Awards Foundation has made such a huge contribution to the lives of hundreds of young singers and people wanting careers in this profession. It is a pleasure to support them and I am honoured to accept the fellowship.’

[via Rhinegold]