Thursday, 18 September 2014

Achievements honoured at Gramophone Awards

Sir Neville Marriner being presented with his Outstanding Achievement Award at the Gramophone Awards by Alfred Brendel
Sir Neville Marriner being presented with his Outstanding
Achievement Award by Alfred Brendel
Both Sir James Galway and Sir Neville Marriner were honoured with special awards at last night's (17 September 2014) Gramophone Awards at St John's Smith Square. Sir James Galway was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award whilst Sir Neville Marriner received on Outstanding Achievement Award. Others honoured included violinist Leonidas Kavakos who received the Artist of the Year Award, Label of the Year went to Delphian Records and the Nightingale String Quartet received the Young Artist of the Year Award.

Sir James Galway's award celebrated a 50 year career which has taken him from the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra to the Val Doonican Show, and lots of places in between; a serious orchestral musician as well as a popular star, not only topping the pop charts but also selling over 30 million discs worldwide. And one of the few flautists to do so.

Sr James Galway performing at last night's Gramophone Awards
Sr James Galway performing at last night's Gramophone Awards
Sir Neville Marriner, who celebrated his 90th birthday this year, received an award which reflected his amazing achievement both with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields and elsewhere. Perhaps the fact that he received an award for outstanding achievement rather than lifetime reflects the fact that he is still on the podium and recently said in an interview that he would be happy to die in harness. Marriner conducts a concert of music by Howard Blake with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields on 25 November 2014.

The Label of the Year went to the enterprising and lively Scottish label Delphian Records which was founded by Paul Baxter. The Young Artist of the Year Award went to the young, all female, Danish string quartet the Nightingale String Quartet. They are the first string quartet ever to win the Young Artist of the Year Award.

Leonidas Kavakos first won a Gramophone Award 23 years ago. The Artist of the Year Award is made by public vote, and honours a violinst whose recent recordings have included the Brahms Violin Concerto, Beethoven violin sonatas and the three Brahms sonatas, all on Decca.

Recording of the year went to Riccardo Chailly and the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig’s for their monumental cycle of Brahms’s four symphonies. The Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, the world’s oldest orchestra, cherishes its historical ties to Brahms. The composer himself conducted the orchestra for the Leipzig premieres of his first, second and third symphonies.

You can read all the original reviews from the Gramophone in a special download, and the magazine's awards issue is available from today.

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