The winners of this year’s BBC Music Magazine Awards have been revealed, at a ceremony in Kings Place, London. Leif Ove Andsnes won the Recording of the Year and Concerto Awards for his Beethoven Piano Concertos Nos 2 & 4 – find out more here.
A recording of Bruckner’s Ninth Symphony from the final concert given by the late Claudio Abbado topped the Orchestral category, with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra’s ‘luminous clarity’ making this a revelatory performance of the composer’s unfinished masterpiece.
In the Choral category, Sir Andrew Davis struck gold with Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius, with soloists Sarah Connolly, Stuart Skelton and David Soar joining the BBC Symphony Chorus and Orchestra. And Sarah Connolly, with pianist Joseph Middleton, offered one of three performances at the Awards ceremony, hosted by editor Oliver Condy and BBC Radio 4 Today programme’s James Naughtie. Leif Ove Andsnes and harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani, who was named Newcomer of the Year for his CPE Bach, also both performed at the ceremony.
Pianist Benjamin Grosvenor won the Instrumental category for his glittering Dances album. Only 22, he has already been nominated previously for a BBC Music Magazine Award. And violinist Isabelle Faust won her second Award for her disc of Beethoven Piano Trios, with cellist Jean-Guihen Queyras and pianist Alexander Melnikov.
Another recital disc, Stella di Napoli, from mezzo Joyce DiDonato, stole the limelight in the Vocal category, while fellow opera star Gerald Finley was at the heart of the Glyndebourne production of Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg that won the Opera category.
Jury Awards went to Mahan Esfahani (Newcomer), Korean composer Unsuk Chin (Premiere) for her disc of three concertos, and Becoming Traviata (DVD), a behind-the-scenes documentary following Natalie Dessay’s transformation into Violetta, Verdi’s tragic heroine.
Winners in full
RECORDING OF THE YEAR/CONCERTO
Leif Ove Andsnes (piano, direction); Mahler Chamber Orchestra
Beethoven: Piano Concertos Nos 2 & 4 (Sony Classical)
Lucerne Festival Orchestra/Claudio Abbado
Bruckner: Symphony No. 9 (Deutsche Grammophon)
Benjamin Grosvenor (piano)
Dances: Albéniz, JS Bach, Chopin, Granados, Scriabin etc (Decca)
Isabelle Faust (violin), Jean-Guihen Queyras (cello) & Alexander Melnikov (piano)
Beethoven: Piano Trios Op. 70 No. 2 & Op. 97 Archduke (Harmonia Mundi)
Joyce DiDonato (mezzo), Orchestra & Choir of Lyon Opera/Riccardo Minasi
Stella di Napoli: bel canto arias (Erato)
Sarah Connolly, Stuart Skelton, David Soar, BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus/Sir Andrew Davis Elgar: Dream of Gerontius; Sea Pictures (Chandos)
Gerald Finley, Marco Jentzsch, Anna Gabler, Johannes Martin Kränzle Glyndebourne Chorus, London Philharmonic/ Vladimir Jurowski
Wagner: Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Glyndebourne)
Mahan Esfahani (harpsichord)
CPE Bach: Württemberg Sonatas (Hyperion)
Unsuk Chin: Three Concertos
Sunwook Kim, Alban Gerhardt, Wu Wei, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra/Myung- Whun Chung (Deutsche Grammophon)
Natalie Dessay, Jean-François Sivadier, Louis Langrée etc Dir: Philippe Béziat (Axiom Films)