The International Classical Music Awards (ICMA) organized their Award Ceremony and Gala Concert yesterday, April 1, at the nearly sold out Kursaal in Sebastian, where an audience of 1500 applauded the winners. The event was hosted by the Basque National Orchestra and San Sebastian Cultural Capital of Europe 2016. The Award Ceremony was presented by ICMA’s President Remy Franck, and awards were given to such artists as Dame Felicity Lott, Jordi Savall, Christian Lindberg, Pablo Ferrández, Nikolai Song, Marc Lewon, Michala Petri & Mahan Esfahani, Lukasz Dlugosz, Berliner Philharmoniker, Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig, Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne, Harmonia Mundi, BIS CEO Robert von Bahr, Palazzetto Bru Zane, the label Genuin for the Dinorah Varsi Edition and Christopher Nupen.
After the Award Ceremony, the Gala concert took place at the Kursaal, with the Euskadi Symphony Orchestra being conducted by its Music Director Jun Märkl. Young Artist of the Year, Pablo Ferrandez opened the concert with a ravishingly lyric and passionate 1st movement of Antonin Dvorak’s Cello Concerto. Discovery Award Winner Nikolai Song amazed the audience with his brilliant and colorful performance of Cécile Chaminade’s Flute Concerto op. 107. Artist of the Year, Christian Lindberg was a very humoristic performer in a Solo by John Cage.
Lukasz Dlugosz beautifully played excerpts of Krzysztof Penderecki’s Flute Concerto, a winner in the Contemporary Music category. And Dame Felicity Lott, winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award, thrilled the huge audience with arias by Jacques Offenbach.
Michala Petri, Mahan Esfahani opened the second part of the Gala with Arcangelo Corelli’s Sonata La Follia, full of fantasy and numerous varying atmospheres. Representing Palazzetto Bru Zane, David Violi played the first movement of Marie Jäell’s Piano Concerto No 2. Is was a passionate and sumptuous reading of this marvelous work. The concert ended with a sparkling and energetic version of Maurice Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G major where soloist Javier Perianes represented the Label of The Year, Harmonia Mundi.