The British cellist Steven Isserlis has received the 14th »Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward« on May 23, 2017, during his guest appearance at the Dresden Music Festival. The award was presented by Thomas Meier, Managing Director of Glashütte Original, and Jan Vogler, Intendant of the Dresden Music Festival, after Isserlis’ concert with the London Philharmonic Orchestra under Vladimir Jurowski’s baton at Dresden’s Kulturpalast.
“I am very happy to receive the 2017 Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward. It is a great honor, and a particular pleasure to receive this prize from Glashütte Original and from a valued (and generous!) cello-colleague, Jan Vogler. Music education has always been very close to my heart. I have been lucky enough to work with many great teachers, including my childhood teacher, Jane Cowan, and the Hungarian dynamo Sándor Végh – as well as, in more recent times, two other great Hungarians, György Kurtág and Ferenc Rados. I feel that it is my duty to pass along to the younger generation of players the values I imbibed from those inspired musicians. Bringing music to children is another preoccupation in my career. The life of any child, from whatever background, can be transformed by music. As well as providing personal fulfillment, music can be of immense help in social terms within difficult circumstances; we have seen tangible results of that in the forms of youth ensembles around the world, such as the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra in Venezuela, Buskaid in South Africa, and many others. Musical friendships are made that last for life; playing in groups with others teaches the importance of mutual respect, and of listening to others; sharing a musical goal can be as strong a bond as any in childhood. And children, as well as adults, turn to music in times of loneliness or sadness; music will never let them down. I think it’s true to say that a singing child is generally a happy child; the more we can bring great music into the lives of children everywhere, the better those lives will be.”
The »Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward« honors achievements in classical music education and support for young artists. In 2017 it will be donated by the watch-manufacturing company Glashütte Original and awarded jointly with the Dresden Music Festival for the 14th time. The »Glashütte Original MusicFestivalAward« carries a cash value of 25,000 Euros, a sum tied to specific aims. Steven Isserlis has chosen to support the international seminar for musicians »IMS Prussia Cove« and the education projects »London Music Masters« and »Rhapsody in Schools« with his award money.
As in past years, the trophy will be designed and made by two students of the factory’s own Watchmaking School »Alfred Helwig«. The prize sculpture combines traditional watch-making craft with modern materials. The overhung tourbillion with its filigree screw balance symbolizes the watchmakers’ virtuosity. It is considered a sign of the highest art of watch-making and was developed by the master watchmaker Alfred Helwig in Glashütte around 1920.