Winner of Inaugural Warner Music Prize Is Violinist Augustin Hadelich

NEW YORK, NY – October 20, 2015: Warner Music Group and the Blavatnik Family Foundation announced today that violinist Augustin Hadelich – hailed by the New York Times as a “brilliant young violinist, with magisterial poise and serene control” – has been named the winner of the first Warner Music Prize. On hearing the news, Hadelich commented: “I am overjoyed to be awarded the Warner Music Prize! This is going to be an extraordinary help to me as I continue to build my career, and I am deeply grateful to the jury for this tremendous honor.”

Click here to see Hadelich play Pablo de Sarasate’s Spanish Dance Op. 23, No. 2, “Zapateado.”

Established in November 2014, the prize features a cash award of $100,000 and recognizes young classical musicians of exceptional talent and promise, selected by a jury of world-renowned classical artists and industry leaders. Nominees for the inaugural 2015 Warner Music Prize were drawn from those young singers and instrumentalists presented by Carnegie Hall in significant solo roles during the 2014-15 concert season.

The inaugural Warner Music Prize jury comprised Deborah Voigt, Grammy Award-winning soprano; James Conlon, Music Director of the Los Angeles Opera; Ara Guzelimian, Provost and Dean of New York’s Juilliard School; Kathryn Enticott, founding director of Enticott Music Management; and Donald Wagner, director of Warner Music Group.

Deborah Voigt said, “I know from my own experience what a profound impact an award can have on a young artist’s career. The Warner Music Prize is a major new award, so it was a real honor to help choose the first recipient. I’m thrilled that we all agreed on Augustin Hadelich. He’s incredibly talented and a very worthy winner.”

Stu Bergen, President, International, Warner Recorded Music, noted: “We are thrilled that Augustin Hadelich has been named the recipient of the first Warner Music Prize. He is the perfect example of what the prize is intended to celebrate and support: a dazzling young artist with enormous talent, undeniable charisma, and a bright career ahead of him.”

Len Blavatnik, Founder of the Blavatnik Family Foundation and Chairman of Access Industries, said: “Acknowledging and helping outstanding young artists early in their careers is essential to the ongoing vibrancy of the classical world. We are very happy for Augustin and look forward to his continued success and achievement in the years ahead.”

Like the Blavatnik Prize for Young Scientists, established in 2007, recognizing and nurturing young talent is the mission of the Warner Music Prize. In addition to awarding the prize to Hadelich, Warner Music and the Blavatnik Family Foundation will also make a contribution to the Harmony Program, a nonprofit organization that provides afterschool music education programs in underserved communities across New York City.

Upon hearing the news of the contribution, Anne Fitzgibbon, Founder of the Harmony Program said: “The Harmony Program is honored to receive support from the Warner Music Prize. Last month, Augustin met and worked with our students, dazzling them with his playing and helping to inspire and motivate them as well.”

About Augustin Hadelich

Thirty-one-year-old Augustin Hadelich has established himself as one of the top violin soloists of his generation. His phenomenal technique, poetic sensitivity, and gorgeous tone contribute to a rare mastery of repertoire ranging from Bach and Beethoven to Ligeti and Adès. His previous honors include an Avery Fisher Career Grant, Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, and first prize at the 2006 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis. His recording of the Sibelius and Thomas Adès concertos with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic was nominated for a Gramophone Award. In 2015-16 he makes debuts with the Chicago Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, and Orpheus Chamber Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, and records Lalo’s Symphonie espagnole and Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Click here for high-resolution photos of Augustin Hadelich.

About the Harmony Program

A nonprofit organization that provides afterschool music education programs in underserved communities across New York City, the Harmony Program began as a pilot program in the New York City Mayor’s Office in 2003 and was incorporated as an independent nonprofit organization the following year. In 2008, Harmony established an institutional partnership with the City University of New York, and was re-launched in its current model with an emphasis on intensive instruction, ensemble performance, and teacher training. Click here for high-resolution photos of the Harmony Program.

About Warner Music Group

With its broad roster of new stars and legendary artists, Warner Music Group is home to a collection of the best-known record labels in the music industry, including Asylum, Atlantic, Big Beat, East West, Elektra, Erato, Fueled by Ramen, Nonesuch, Parlophone, Reprise, Rhino, Roadrunner, Rykodisc, Sire, Warner Bros., Warner Classics, Warner Music Nashville, and Word, as well as Warner/Chappell Music, one of the world’s leading music publishers, with a catalogue of more than one million copyrights worldwide. 

About the Blavatnik Family Foundation

The Blavatnik Family Foundation is an active supporter of many leading educational, scientific, cultural and charitable institutions throughout the world. The Foundation is headed by Len Blavatnik, an American industrialist and philanthropist, and the founder and chairman of Access Industries, a privately held U.S. industrial group with global interests in natural resources and chemicals, media and telecommunications, technology and e-commerce, and real estate. Among its numerous activities involving young people, the Foundation created the Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists in 2007 to acknowledge the excellence of the most noteworthy young scientists and engineers in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The awards program was expanded in 2014 to encompass faculty-level scientists on a national level. In 2010, Mr. Blavatnik and the Foundation established the Blavatnik School of Government at the University of Oxford to train outstanding graduates from across the globe in the skills and responsibilities of government.