The Classical Music Awards 1994: Brilliance and brio acclaimed: Robert Maycock describes the talents that drew the approval of the judges

Orchestra of the Year: New York Philharmonic. Under the direction of Kurt Masur - who chose the job in preference to being President of Germany - it has just celebrated its 150th anniversary.

Notable premieres it has given in its time include Dvorak's New World Symphony. Now its home base is Avery Fisher Hall, and in summer it gives free concerts in city parks.

Chorus of the Year: Arnold Schoenberg Chor. Featured for the awards programme not with its namesake's music but in Haydn's great oratorio The Creation. Its repertoire in fact ranges from opera, and large- scale works such as the Brahms German Requiem (one of last year's notable performances) to intricate unaccompanied music.

Based in Vienna, it was founded in 1972 by Erwin Ortner, who is still the artistic director. Most members are graduates of the Vienna School of Music.

Female Singer of the Year: Cecilia Bartoli. Currently inseparable from the name of Rossini, as anyone will know who has heard her combination of brilliant accuracy and musical feeling in the most spectacularly decorative arias.

Last year she made her mark in Mozart opera too, with Don Giovanni at La Scala, Milan, and Cosi fan tutte in Salzburg. Rossini's Barber of Seville took her to Houston and Zurich. She appeared in London with recitals at the Wigmore Hall and the Royal Festival Hall.

Conductor of the Year: Valery Gergiev. The right musician in the right place at the right time - he has been artistic director and principal conductor of the Kirov Opera, St Petersburg, since 1988, and apart from his musical achievements has conceived and brought off a new dimension of activity for his company.

The Kirov has toured widely in Western Europe and last November went to Japan; it has just set up a joint series with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London which will bring Gergiev and Kirov singers to perform an adventurous repertoire of Russian operas in concert.

Opera Production of the Year: Oedipus Rex at the Saito Kinen Festival. This imaginative staging brought together Asian costumes and stage traditions with the ritual of the Greek theatre and the epic score of Stravinsky.

Jessye Norman sang Jocasta, Philip Langridge Oedipus, and Bryn Terfel Creon. The conductor was Seiji Ozawa, who founded this new summer festival in Matsumoto, beneath the mountains of central Japan.

There are prospects of a transfer to Paris; a full video exists but has not yet been screened in Britain.

Composition of the Year: Symphony No 4 by Witold Lutoslawski. A musical masterpiece, predicted the jury, that will quickly become a genuine classic - in which case it will be following in the footsteps of the same composer's Symphony No 3 and a long series of scintillating scores for orchestra in particular.

It was commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, first heard there in February 1993, and had its UK premiere at the Proms in August.

Festival of the Year: Tender is the North. At the end of 1992 four London venues, including the Barbican Centre and the Wigmore Hall, put on a 55- concert exploration of the Nordic countries' music alongside drama, art and film.

It included a range of music familiar (Sibelius) and unknown (quite a lot of Grieg, as well as pieces from the active new-music scene). Leading Scandinavian and Finnish musicians appeared, along with British performers. According to Humphrey Burton, itnarrowly escaped being called 'Some like it cold'.

Television Broadcast of the Year: BBC TV's The Vampyr. This was the one that turned opera into soap, presenting the characters of Heinrich Marschner's 1828 cult work (not much seen in opera houses now) as manipulators and victims of modern high finance.

There was an instalment each night for five days, until the vampire met his grisly end - which managed to be thrilling and hilarious at the same time.

Produced by Janet Street- Porter, directed by Nigel Finch, and sung by Omar Ebrahim, Richard Van Allan and Fiona O'Neill among others.

Instrumentalist of the Year: Yuri Bashmet. Has given the viola, once the neglected voice of the string section, a new dimension of solo expression, following the lead of his great predecessor Lionel Tertis. Like him, Bashmet has seen numerous new works into life, particularly in the later days of the Soviet Union - he has had an especially fruitful creative relationship with the composer Alfred Schnittke.

He is a professor at the Moscow Conservatory, where he founded a high-powered touring string ensemble, the Moscow Soloists, in 1992.

Recording of the Year: Symphony No 3 by Henryk Gorecki. What else could it have been? Dawn Upshaw, Paul Daniel and the London Sinfonietta were not the first to record the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs, which was composed nearly 20 years ago. But theirs was the one that caught a public mood.

His appearances at public performances now produce amazing scenes of high emotion and standing ovations, more like a rock concert than a classical event. The recording reached No 6 in the pop album charts and continues to sell in huge numbers.

Chamber Group of the Year: Kronos Quartet. Another case of new-music specialists reaching a big new audience. The quartet tours constantly and is equally well known on disc, but the distinctive feature - apart from user-friendly concert styles - is what it plays.

Repertoire runs right through from the 20th-century classics to Glass and Gorecki and brand-new pieces by young composers, and further still, into classic rock arrangments and collaborations with the music of Africa and Asia. Not afraid of improvising, either.

Newcomer of the Year: Sarah Chang. The 13-year-old violin virtuoso, born in Philadelphia to Korean parents, has just graduated to a full-size violin. But the music-making has been in a league of its own for several years, a fusion of technical prowess and musical instinct that has baffled, thrilled and moved fellow string players and audiences alike.

Began playing at four, made her orchestral debut in 1986, now studying at the Juilliard School in New York. Asked for the Awards what she might be doing in a few years' time, said 'I'm aiming to be a violinist.'

Male Singer of the Year: Thomas Hampson. The baritone styles himself simply 'a singer' and uses his warm- toned natural asset to cast a glow on Bach and Mahler, Stephen Foster and Cole Porter. Studied in America, where he made his debut in 1974, although his first appearance at the Royal Opera in London came only last year, in The Barber of Seville.

During 1993 he gave recitals at Carnegie Hall and Tanglewood, and he has enhanced the CD catalogues by recording Ambroise Thomas's 19th-century French opera, Hamlet.

Also awarded, though not presented at the Royal Albert Hall: Early Music Group of the Year. The winner was the Orchestra of the 18th Century.

In association with Kenwood, supported by BBC Music Magazine and the Independent

(Photographs omitted)

Suggested Topics
Arts and Entertainment
Art on their sleeves: before downloads and streaming, enthusiasts used to flick through racks of albums in their local record shops
musicFor Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Arts and Entertainment
Serial suspect: the property heir charged with first-degree murder, Robert Durst
TV review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Igarashi in her

Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression

Arts and Entertainment
Could Ed Sheeran conquer the Seven Kingdoms? He could easily pass for a Greyjoy like Alfie Allen's character (right)

tv Singer could become the most unlikely star of Westeros

Arts and Entertainment
Beyonce, Boris Johnson, Putin, Nigel Farage, Russell Brand and Andy Murray all get the Spitting Image treatment from Newzoids
tvReview: The sketches need to be very short and very sharp as puppets are not intrinsically funny
Arts and Entertainment
Despite the controversy it caused, Mile Cyrus' 'Wrecking Ball' video won multiple awards
musicPoll reveals over 70% of the British public believe sexually explicit music videos should get ratings
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister and Ian Beattie as Meryn Trant in the fifth season of Game of Thrones

TV
Arts and Entertainment

book review
Arts and Entertainment
It's all in the genes: John Simm working in tandem with David Threlfall in 'Code of a Killer'

TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Far Right and Proud: Reggies Yates' Extreme Russia

TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Kanye West was mobbed in Armenia after jumping into a lake

music
Arts and Entertainment
The show suffers from its own appeal, being so good as to create an appetite in its viewers that is difficult to sate in a ten episode series

Game of Thrones reviewFirst look at season five contains some spoilers
Arts and Entertainment
Judi Dench and Kevin Spacey on the Red Carpet for 2015's Olivier Awards

Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awards

Theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Proving his metal: Ross Poldark (played by Aidan Turner in the BBC series) epitomises the risk-taking spirit of 18th-century mine owners

Poldark review
Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne is reportedly favourite to play Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

film
Arts and Entertainment
Tom Hardy stars in dystopian action thriller Mad Max: Fury Road

film
Arts and Entertainment
Josh, 22, made his first million from the game MinoMonsters

Grace Dent

Channel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
News
Disgraced Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson
people
Arts and Entertainment
Game face: Zoë Kravitz, Bruce Greenwood and Ethan Hawke in ‘Good Kill’

film review

Arts and Entertainment
Living like there’s no tomorrow: Jon Hamm as Don Draper in the final season of ‘Mad Men’

TV review

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

    Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

    His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
    'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

    Open letter to David Cameron

    Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
    Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

    You don't say!

    Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
    Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

    So what is Mubi?

    Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
    The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

    The hardest job in theatre?

    How to follow Kevin Spacey
    Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

    Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

    To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
    Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

    'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

    The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
    Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

    This human tragedy has been brewing for years

    EU states can't say they were not warned
    Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

    Women's sportswear

    From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
    Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

    Clinton's clothes

    Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
    NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

    Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

    A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
    Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

    Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

    The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
    How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

    How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

    Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
    From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

    The wars that come back to haunt us

    David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
    Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

    Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

    A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders