Norwegian ensemble Cikada is to be awarded the Nordic Council Music Prize 2005. The theme for the eleven nominations this year was Nordic chamber ensembles.
Stated the Nordic Council’s adjudication committee in yesterday’s press release: ’Cikada has put in years of dedicated work to turn itself into an important ambassador for contemporary Nordic music. The committee has been particularly impressed by the ensemble’s unique idiom, dynamic playing style and innovative attitude to stylistic diversity. Cikada’s uncompromising commitment to quality in every aspect of its work has seen it evolve into an organisation that draws attention to the major significance of contemporary music to our Nordic identity.’’
Cikada was founded in 1989 and is widely regarded as one of Europe’s most central contemporary music ensembles. The ensemble is made up of nine musicians and is led by conductor Christian Eggen.
The DKK 350,000 Nordic Music Prize will be awarded at a ceremony during the Nordic Council Session in Reykjavik at the end of October.
Bergen’s BIT20 Ensemble was also nominated for the prestigious award.
The other nominated Nordic ensembles were: LINensemble and Athelas Sinfonietta Copenhagen from Denmark, Axelsson & Nilsson Duo and Stockholm Saxophone Quartet from Sweden, Avanti! Chamber Orchestra and Zagros from Finland, Caput and Reykjavík Chamber Orchestra from Iceland as well as Aldubáran from The Faeroe Islands.
The Nordic Council’s Music Prize was established in 1965 by the Nordic governments jointly at the recommendation of the Nordic Council. At first the idea was that the prize should be awarded once every three years. The first prize was thus awarded in 1965, the second in 1968. It was then decided that the prize should be awarded every second year, so the third Nordic prize was awarded in 1970. From the beginning it was intended as a prize that was to be given to w work by a living Nordic composer.
From 1990 the rules for the award were changed and the prize money was increased to € 20 625. From now on it was to be awarded every year as “the Nordic Council’s Music Prize for Creative and Performing Musical Art”. This meant that in alternate years the prize was to be awarded to a Nordic work (as before) and a Nordic performing musician or ensemble. In 1991 the prize was awarded for the first time to a performing musician (the late Danish bassist Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen).
Previous Norwegian recipients of the Nordic Council Music Prize include Sámi performer Mari Boine and composer Rolf Wallin.
Thorbjørn Tønder Hansen, Managing Director