musician of the year

Today, I’m pleased at this news in Helsingin Sanomat International:

Esa-Pekka Salonen named Musical America’s “Musician of the Year”
Musical America has named the Finnish conductor, composer, and music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Esa-Pekka Salonen as its “Musician of the Year 2006”. Salonen received the award in New York last night. The Musician of the Year award was launched in 1960 and is one of the most prestigious honours paid to classical artists in the USA today.

In a nice coincidence, the Musical America award was won by a Finn for the second consecutive year. Last year Finnish soprano Karita Mattila, a regular soloist on the stage of the New York Metropolitan Opera, was named the Musician of the Year 2005.
Other awardees in various categories over the years include Leonard Bernstein (1961, 1989), Yehudi Menuhin (1966), Plácido Domingo (1977), Herbert von Karajan (1990), and Sir Simon Rattle (2002).

Musical America is an international directory of the performing arts. Its annual print publication features over 14,000 detailed listings of worldwide arts organisations and over 10,000 artists are indexed in its alphabetical and categorical indices.

Coincidentally, I just opened some mail received a while ago, issue #5 of the Suomen Silta/Finland Bridge, a magazine for Finnish expatriates that I subscribe to. On the front cover is a photograph of Esa-Pekka Salonen, with an article inside. He has received the Expatriate of the Year award for 2005, for his own brilliant career, and for helping make Finnish music and musicians known around the world. I recall Karita Mattila also received the award a few years ago.

December 13, 2005 in Finland, Estonia & Finno-Ugric, Music by Marja-Leena