During the evening of May 6, 2016 Andris Nelsons was awarded the 13th Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward in the lounge of the Dresden Music Festival, in an exclusive setting. The
Latvian conductor, honored in part for his contribution to making classical music more accessible, received the award following his concert with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in
the Frauenkirche Dresden. The concert was one of a great many artistic highlights that saw
the Dresden Music Festival and Glashütte Original celebrate "Time" together, this year's Festival theme.
Prior to the award ceremony the orchestra performed the moving Max Bruch composition “Kol Nidrei“, with Festival Director Jan Vogler as soloist on the cello, in the festive atmosphere of the Frauenkirche Dresden, under the direction of Andris Nelsons. This was followed by Gustav Mahler's 9th symphony. The international audience enjoyed an unforgettable evening – as did the prizewinner himself:
“I am so honored to receive this prestigious prize from Glashütte Original and the Dresden Music Festival. I strongly believe that music is a fundamental right for human beings, a food for our souls as I have often said, and its value cannot be held highly enough. Classical music must be accessible for communities and people of all ages, and it is incredibly important that we keep encouraging audiences - both our beloved supporters and newcomers - to experience music making as much as possible. I am so honored to receive such a prize, also together with the Boston Symphony, in recognition of our special focus of enhancing accessibility to classical music – something we hope very much to build on, and I must say we all individually must keep striving to do more. To this effect, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and I are so excited to be back in Europe and share our deep passion and commitment directly with the wonderful audience in Dresden!” The internationally renowned conductor, born in 1978 in Riga, has been Music Director of theBoston Symphony Orchestra since 2014 and will become new Gewandhauskapellmeister of theGewandhausorchester Leipzig from the 2017/18 season. The Glashütte Original Music Festival Prize honors not simply Andris Nelsons's sensitive interpretive power, but his commitment to making classical music more accessible and to supporting emerging musicians, as well.
Jan Vogler, Director of the Dresden Music Festival, noted:
“Andris Nelsons, who is from Latvia, enjoyed his first musical successes in Germany and the USA and is now responsible for leading two traditional orchestras, both among the most renowned, internationally, into the future. He motivates and inspires many young people all over the world to assume responsibility for an international world community that with education, culture and art points the way to humanism and peace.”
The Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward, valued at 25,000 euros, has now been awarded for the 13th time. Again this year the much-desired trophy was made by two students at the manufactory's own “Alfred Helwig“ watchmaking school. Previous winners of the prize include such renowned artists as Gustavo Dudamel, Sir Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Hélène Grimaud, Hilary Hahn, and the fado-singer Mariza. The prize honors international artists who are exceptional in terms of both their talent and their commitment to the younger generations. Support for emerging talent is of particular importance to the Saxon watchmaker, also a great believer in the value of teaching and handing on traditional arts to young people:
“Every year the Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward honors an artist whose music not only moves a cross-generational international audience, but who also invests a considerable amount of time and energy in helping talented young people. The transmission of knowledge involved in this effort, and a passion for an art rich in tradition, are essential criteria in the selection of the prizewinner. For this reason, and to underscore the importance to Glashütte Original of support for young people and for the maintenance of tradition, the Prize is crafted every year by two apprentices at our Alfred Helwig School of Watchmaking," said Yann Gamard, CEO, Glashütte Original.