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Jordi Savall to receive the 2012 York Early Music Festival Lifetime Achievement Award

Jordi Savall, the distinguished Catalan viol-player, will receive the fourth biennial York Early Music Festival Lifetime Achievement Award on Sunday 8 July 2012 at the National Centre for Early Music (NCEM), in York.

Delma Tomlin, Director of the NCEM says: "This Award enables us to celebrate the fantastic achievements of truly remarkable artists during the York Early Music Festival. Jordi's genius and generosity of spirit as both a musician and a director has touched fellow musicians and audiences alike over the last forty years. We are delighted to mark his outstanding contribution to music with this award."

Jordi Savall is widely recognised as one of the true stars of the early music world, a major figure who for nearly four decades has combined virtuosity and sensitive musicianship on his own instrument with inspirational directorship of his ensembles Hespèrion XXI (formerly Hespèrion XX), Le Concert des Nations and La Capella Reial de Catalunya. His questing curiosity about early music and its historical and wider cultural contexts has led him not only to investigate a vast range of mainstream European repertoire from the Medieval through to the Classical periods, but also to explore the links with folk and non-Western traditions, resulting in major projects encompassing music from China, the Middle East, the Far East and South America.   Savall is a musician who is as at home in an Irish jig or a Sephardic  lament as he is in Bach's Gamba Sonatas or the English viol consort repertory, as likely to celebrate music from the Ottoman courts as he is those of Louis XIV or Queen Isabella of Spain.

Jordi Savall commented: "After holding so many warm memories over the years, it is for me a great honour to receive this prestigious award from the York Early Music Festival, which I want to share with my musicians and with Montserrat Figueras"

The Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented by soprano and Radio 3 presenter Catherine Bott immediately after the live broadcast of the Early Music Show at the National Centre for Early Music on Sunday 8 July at 2.00pm.

Jordi Savall brings his ensemble Hespèrion XXI to the Festival to perform a typically eclectic programme entitled 'The Route to the New World: From Spain to Mexico' at the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall at the University of York at 7.30pm on Sunday 8 July.   

Tickets: £25.00 (£20.00 concessions / £5.00 students)
Box Office t: 01904 658338


Press Contact:
Shona Galletly, on behalf of the National Centre for Early Music
m: 07813 796 733

 Notes to editors:

1. The York Early Music Festival's Lifetime Achievement Award honours major figures that have made a difference to the world of early music, and has been presented every other year since its inauguration in 2006. The previous winners have been flautist Barthold Kuijken of the Kuijken brothers (2006), Dame Emma Kirkby (2008) and James Bowman (2010).

2. Jordi Savall
One of the most multifariously gifted musicians of his generation, his career as a concert performer, teacher, researcher and creator of new projects, both musical and cultural, make him one of the principal architects of the current revaluation of historical music. Together with Montserrat Figueras he has founded the ensembles Hespèrion XXI, La Capella Reial de Catalunya and Le Concert des Nations.

He has recorded over 170 CDs, and won many awards such as Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et Lettres (1988), Honorary Member of the Konzerthaus in Vienna (1999), Victoire de la Musique (2002), the Deustchen Schallplattenkritik (2003), and various Midem Classical Awards (1999, 2000, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2010). His double CD Don Quijote de la Mancha, Romances y Músicas (Alia-Vox) was among the five nominees for the 2006 Grammy Awards in the "Early Music" category. The book CD Jérusalem, La Ville des deux Paix, has been awarded in 2009 with the Orphée d'Or de l'Académie du disque lyrique 2008, the Caecilia 2008 as best CD of the year. He was awarded too with the Händelpreis der Stadt Halle 2009 (Germany) and the National Prize of Music 2009 by the Catalan Arts Council.

In 2008 he was appointed "Artist for the Peace" into the goodwill Ambassador's programme of the UNESCO. In 2009 he has been appointed once again Ambassador of the European Year of Creativity and Innovation by the European Union. In 2010 he has been awarded with the Praetorius Musikpreis given by the Niedersächsisches Ministeirum für Wissenschaft und Kultur in Germany. In 2011 the book CD Dinastia Borgia received the Grammy Award 2011 (category of Best Small Ensemble Performance). He has also been awarded the prestigious Léonie Sonning Music Prize in 2012.

3. The National Centre for Early Music is administered by the York Early Music Foundation and funded by Arts Council England, Yorkshire.