Monday, November 17, 2008

Musical America Awards

News comes from the venerable Musical America of their 2008, oops, 2009, awards:
  • Musician of the Year, Yo-Yo Ma
  • Composer of the Year, Christopher Rouse
  • Conductor of the Year, Marin Alsop
  • Vocalist of the Year, Stephanie Blythe
  • Ensemble of the Year, Pacifica Quartet
The press release includes appropriate blurbs about why the recipients merited the awards, but I find the blurbs a little puzzling. The awards seem to be for general achievement, not for specific accomplishments in a particular year. The Pacifica's blurb took note of their repertory and their ongoing commitment to performing contemporary music, citing their Carter quartet marathons, which they've been putting on since 2002.

The release also included a list of all Musicians of the Year. The 1994 award went to Christa Ludwig; a great singer, indeed, but that year was nearly the end of her long career. I doubt there was any specific achievement that earned her the award.

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