The Polar Music Prize 2013 has been awarded to Chester Music composer Kaija Saariaho. After studying at IRCAM in Paris, an institution for research and study of electro-acoustic music, Saariaho has developed into a unique composer, a metal worker’s daughter who reexamines what music can be. When she was growing up, the music that inspired her came not from the radio but from the pillow; that was where she found the music she dreamt of. Kaija Saariaho combines acoustic instruments with electronics and computers. She has written chamber music, orchestral works and operas. On August 27 the Laureates will receive the prize from His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden at a gala ceremony at the Stockholm Concert Hall to be followed by a celebratory banquet at Grand Hôtel. The ceremony will be broadcast live on national television (TV4). Later in the evening, a summary of the ceremony and the banquet will be broadcast. Each recipient receives a total amount of one million SEK.The Polar Music Prize was founded in 1989 by the late Stig ”Stikkan” Anderson, a true legend in the history of Swedish popular music. Stig Anderson was the publisher, lyricist and manager of ABBA, and he played a key role in their enormous success. The name of the prize stems from Anderson’s legendary record label, Polar Music. The Polar Music Prize is an international music prize, which is awarded to individuals, groups or institutions in recognition of exceptional achievements in the creation and advancement of music.The Polar Music Prize awards two Laureates in order to celebrate music in all its various forms and to emphasize the original intention of the Polar Music Prize: To break down musical boundaries by bringing together people from all the different worlds of music.The board of the Polar Music Prize Foundation consists of representatives from the Stig Anderson family, SKAP (The Swedish Society of Popular Music Composers) and STIM (The Swedish Performing Rights Society). The task of scrutinizing nominations submitted and selecting the ultimate Laureates is empowered The Polar Music Award Committee comprising of internationally renowned artists and musicians as well as other key figures in the Swedish music industry.
More information here Previous Laureates2012 Yo-Yo Ma and Paul Simon2011 Kronos Quartet and Patti Smith2010 Ennio Morricone and Björk2009 José Antonio Abreu & El Sistema and Peter Gabriel2008 Renée Fleming and Pink Floyd2007 Steve Reich and Sonny Rollins2006 Valery Gergiev and Led Zeppelin2005 Gilberto Gil and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau2004 B.B. King and György Ligeti2003 Keith Jarrett2002 Sofia Gubaidulina and Miriam Makeba2001 Burt Bacharach, Robert Moog and Karlheinz Stockhausen2000 Bob Dylan and Isaac Stern1999 Stevie Wonder and Iannis Xenakis1998 Ray Charles and Ravi Shankar1997 Eric Ericson and Bruce Springsteen1996 Pierre Boulez and Joni Mitchell1995 Sir Elton John and Mstislav Rostropovich1994 Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Quincy Jones1993 Dizzy Gillespie and Witold Lutoslawski1992 Sir Paul McCartney and The Baltic States