What to Read Next

Columbia shuttle disaster concerto gets top music prize

Michael Roddy
17 September 2013

By Michael Roddy

LONDON (Reuters) - A violin concerto by contemporary Hungarian composer Peter Eotvos commemorating the deaths of the space shuttle Columbia's seven crew in 2003 was chosen as the recording of the year on Tuesday by the Gramophone magazine.

English trumpeter Alison Balsom was named classical artist of the year.

The violin of Moldovan virtuoso Patricia Kopatchinskaja "comes close to disintegrating under the force of her spectacular display" the magazine said in awarding its top honour to the recording of Eotvos's "Seven".

The recording on the Naive label, which also includes pieces by Hungarian composers Bartok and Ligeti, is conducted by the prolific Eotvos, who often tackles topical subjects in his compositions.

"It was like being in a Hungarian cosmos," Kopatchinskaja, who could not attend the awards banquet on Tuesday, said in a recorded message.

Two other Hungarians, violinist Barnabas Kelemen and pianist Zoltan Kocsis, won the chamber music award for their recording of Bartok's sonatas for violin.

London-born classical guitarist Julian Bream, who used to earn money as a boy playing piano in his grandmother's pub in Battersea, was given a lifetime achievement award.

"It was to achieve something that was difficult on an instrument no one cared about, really," Bream, 80, said by way of explanation of why he took up the guitar.

Asked what it was like having had a life in music, he added, "Heaven."

Trumpeter Balsom, 34, whose next CD will feature excerpts from her previous 10 albums, many of which have been big sellers on classical charts, said her selection for the award "is a massive thrill for me because the list of nominees are my musical heroes and idols".

She said that while the repertoire for solo trumpet may not be huge, she felt the instrument had an immediate appeal.

"The voice of the trumpet is a universal sound, it's close to the human voice and I try to exploit that," she said.

The magazine's annual awards, most of which had been announced in advance, are considered among the most prestigious in the classical music industry.

Other awards announced on the night were to Decca as "Label of the Year" while 18-year-old Canadian pianist Jan Lisiecki was named young artist of the year. (Reporting and writing by Michael Roddy)

Is your insurance comp Laughing Behind Your Back?

New Studies Show that if you drive less than 55 miles a day you can save a ton on auto insurance.

Starwood Credit Card

Earn 25,000 Bonus Starpoints®! Use toward Award Nights or Flights.

Heartburn Relief

Fight Heartburn! Don't Let it Get in the Way of Things You Love, Such As Your Favorite Foods. Learn About How TUMS® Antacid Helps Fight Heartburn.

Read This Before You Buy Medigap Plan F

Plan F is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan, but there's another Medigap option you should consider.

Reconnect With Your High School Friends

Classmates® has the largest directory of high school class lists. Remember the good times and reconnect to create new memories.

Insane Navy Seal Flashlight, should it be banned?

The Military has recently released technology that is now available to the public. Get yours before they run out - Limited Supply!

How Older Men Tighten Their Skin

Men, reduce the look of wrinkles, sagging skin and fine lines with this affordable and effective skin tightening treatment without leaving your home.

Heartburn Facts

Read About Heartburn Facts From TUMS. Check Out Heartburn History, Who Gets Heartburn and More.

What Are The Pros & Cons Of A Reverse Mortgage?

More Americans are accessing their home equity to support their retirement years. Speak with a professional and see what you may qualify for today.

Hilton HHonors™ Card

Earn 40,000 Hilton HHonors™ Bonus Points. Apply for Your Card Today.

VA Mortgage Rates In 2016

VA Rates as Low as 2.75% (3.028% APR) 15 Year Fixed. Exclusive For Veteran & Military Takes 1 Min!

Banks Are Worried Homeowners Will Do This.

Homeowners are surprised and furious. If you owe less than $625,000 on your home, you better read this.

Kid sleep troubles email series for moms

We get it. We’ve been there. Sign up for our email track to learn how to handle kids who won’t go to sleep or won’t stay in bed.

How To Make Sagging Skin Look Tight and Lifted

[Watch] The easy and effective way consumers across the country are improving the look of their wrinkled and sagging skin without cosmetic procedures.