At the 54th RECORD ACADEMY AWARD in Tokyo today, Paavo Järvi was announced as the recipient of two prestigious prizes: The Complete Nielsen Symphonies recorded with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony was voted “Gand Prix (Silver Prize): Best Symphony Recording” and his second CD release as Chief Conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra featuring Richard Strauss’ Don Quixote, Till Eulenspiegel & Der Rosenkavalier Suite was voted “Best Orchestral Recording”. Both releases appear on the RCA Red Seal label of Sony Music.
These two recordings were particularly special projects for Paavo Järvi. The Nielsen Cycle was performed and recorded over several years in Frankfurt during his time as Principal Conductor (2006 – 2013). As Paavo commented, “Carl Nielsen’s symphonies are rarely performed and even more rarely recorded so it was an important opportunity to bring a new audience to this great music. That audiences not only throughout Europe but also in Japan have come to appreciate these less known works has been truly uplifting.”
Of his recording project with the NHK Symphony Orchestra Paavo said “For our recording of Strauss to be chosen as the best recording in the orchestral category is particularly momentous as it is a recognition of our collaboration together as conductor and orchestra. When I was thinking about this recording project, it brought to mind the NHK Symphony Orchestra’s great tradition, its famous sound, and the conductors who have had a deep influence on it. It is well-known that this orchestra has a very German character because of the long performance tradition with some of the greatest German and Austrian conductors … Listening to our Strauss recording, I can say without any hesitation, that the result has even exceeded my expectations. I am so impressed with the tightly knit ensemble playing of the orchestra: all the musicians are very detail oriented and the result is very polished and well-worked out. What also made me personally very happy was, along with this high level of achievement and deep affinity for the music, the orchestra’s openness to suggestions and discussion. They were ready for and accepting of ideas that they might not have tried before, and we immediately became a good team.”
The RECORD ACADEMY AWARD is organized by RECORD GEIJUTSU Magazine (literally, “The Art of Record” in Japanese), published by the ONGAKU-NO-TOMO Company (literally “Friends of Music” in Japanese) and is given annually to the best classical music discs in 15 different genres/categories by the vote of the selection committee comprising Japanese classical music critics and journalists. The Award was created in 1963 and is regarded as one of the most authoritative in the world of classical music.