Naxos among ICMA 2020 winners – wins Recording of the Year Award
May 2, 2020
Naxos was among the winners of this year’s International Classical Music Awards (ICMA), announced on 30 April. Ondine, one of Naxos’ affiliated labels, was also the recipient of an award.
Of the nineteen citations in the audio and video categories, Naxos received two awards, both of which went to its box set of Beethoven’s complete symphonies, featuring the Danish Chamber Orchestra under Adam Fischer. The collection won the Symphonic Music category and was also named ICMA Recording of the Year.
The jury considered the edition a “ …very convincing, coherent and meaningful set of Beethoven’s symphonies whose main characteristic is the rhetorical diversity showing all Beethoven’s various facets. This eloquence is achieved with a consistently slender, low-vibrato music-making and a wide range of tempi, rhythm and dynamics. Exciting contrasts, powerful accents and expressive rubato let Beethoven ‘speak’ in a most persuasive way.”
Ondine won the Choral Music category for its recording of Tchaikovsky’s Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom and Nine Sacred Pieces, performed by the Latvian Chamber Choir under Sigvards Kļava. The jury praised the choir’s “ …angelic purity and brightness that emphasise the universality of the music. The harmonies seem to glow and the melodies create a long, intense arc that combines beauty, spirituality and passion.”
Special ICMA honours went to two other recording artists who are well represented in the Naxos catalogue: the Orchestra Award went to guitarist Pepe Romero (“…an almanac of musical knowledge”); and conductor John Axelrod received a Special Achievement Award, the jury acknowledging his “probing, rigorous and richly characterised interpretations.”
Accentus Music, one of Naxos’ distributed labels, was the winner in the Video Documentary category for its “incredibly enriching documentary” on Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer, “one of the most unconventional and exciting musicians of our time.”