Montréal, QC, November 2 – Today, four outstanding composers from around the globe were named the 2024 Azrieli Music Prizes (AMP) laureates by the Azrieli Foundation. These biennial Azrieli Music Prizes aim to discover, elevate and amplify artistic voices that exhibit excellence.
Congratulations to Yair Klartag, who received the Azrieli Commission for Jewish Music; Josef Bardanashvili, who won the Azrieli Prize for Jewish Music; Jordan Nobles, who received the Azrieli Commission for Canadian Music; and Juan Trigos, who won the first-ever Azrieli Commission for International Music — a prize created to promote greater intercultural understanding.
Each Laureate will receive a prize package valued at over CAD 200,000, including a cash award of CAD 50,000; a world-premiere performance of their prize-winning work in Montréal by the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal Chorus at the AMP Gala Concert on October 28, 2024; two subsequent international performances; and a professional recording of their prize-winning work.
Each cycle of AMP’s four music prizes focuses on an instrumentation category. The 2024 Laureates will compose choral works for a cappella choir and up to four additional instruments and/or vocal soloist(s).
This year, three distinguished panels of luminaries and experts selected the winning submissions, including Chaya Czernowin, Tania León, Dr. Neil W. Levin, Samy Moussa, Gerard Schwarz and Ana Sokolović.
YAIR KLARTAG – AZRIELI COMMISSION FOR JEWISH MUSIC
The Azrieli Commission for Jewish Music is awarded to encourage composers to creatively and critically engage with the question, “What is Jewish music?” It is given to the composer who displays the utmost creativity, artistry, technical mastery and professional expertise in their response to this question.
For the Commission, Yair Klartag will create The Parable of the Palace, an 18-minute work for choir and four double basses. The work will draw on Jewish philosopher Maimonides’s (1138-1204) famous parable to investigate the limits of logic and reason in explaining reality and the metaphysical. The Parable of the Palace will divide the choir and double basses into four smaller ensembles, in which each choir approaches–but never quite reaches–the pitch of the double bass.
The jury praised Klartag for “meeting a very high standard in how his music clearly connects at all levels and yet manages to evade our expectations.”
JOSEF BARDANASHVILI – AZRIELI PRIZE FOR JEWISH MUSIC
In selecting Bardanashvili, the Jury noted that his “music is beautiful. It is clear the composer is putting his own inner musical and sacred world on display and, in so doing, inviting the listener to enter it.”
JORDAN NOBLES – THE AZRIELI COMMISSION FOR CANADIAN MUSIC
The Azrieli Commission for Canadian Music is offered to a Canadian composer to create a new musical work that engages with the complexities of composing concert music in Canada today. Jordan Nobles’s proposal – Kanata for Large Choir – will be a 15-minute tribute to the Canadian landscape inspired by travel across Canada. Each section of the new work will be composed on the land as Nobles travels through it. The work will feature the modern and First Nation names of the rivers, lakes and mountains from each province.
The jury credited Nobles as “a strong composer who writes music that is unashamedly honest and clearly in his voice. His compositions are elemental, expansive and engaging, pulling you into his sound world.”
JUAN TRIGOS – THE AZRIELI COMMISSION FOR INTERNATIONAL MUSIC
The Azrieli Commission for International Music is offered to a composer who engages with the world’s diverse cultural heritage. 2024 laureate Juan Trigos will honour the pre-Hispanic culture of his native Mexico with his commissioned work Simetrías Prehispánicas. The 20-minute composition for chorus, amplified flute, trombone, percussion and keyboards will incorporate text by anonymous and major Aztec poets from the 15th century in their original Nahuatl and Spanish translations.
Reviewing Trigos’s proposal, the jury praised him as “a gifted composer whose music is polished, rhythmic, original, well-orchestrated and directional.”
The AMP Gala Concert, featuring the premiere of all four Prize-winning works by the OSM Chorus, conducted by Andrew Megill, takes place on October 28, 2024.
ABOUT THE AZRIELI MUSIC PRIZES
Established in 2014, the biennial Azrieli Music Prizes (AMP) offers opportunities for discovering, creating, performing and celebrating excellence in music composition. Open to the international music community; AMP accepts nominations for works from individuals and institutions of all ages, nationalities, faiths, genders, backgrounds and affiliations, which are then submitted to its expert juries through an open call for scores and proposals.
The four AMP prize packages – valued at CAD 200,000 per laureate – make it the top music composition competition in Canada and one of the largest in the world. Past prize-winners include Iranian-Canadian composer Iman Habibi (2022), Israeli-Canadian composer Aharon Harlap (2022), Canadian composers Rita Ueda (2022), Keiko Devaux (2020), Kelly-Marie Murphy (2018) and Brian Current (2016), Dutch-born American composer Yotam Haber (2020), Israeli-Australian composer Yitzhak Yedid (2020), Israeli-American composer Avner Dorman (2018) and US-based Polish composer Wlad Marhulets (2016).
Originally published in 8VA Music Consultanct. View the original article here.