Alison Balsom on Paris and music education

17 September 2014, 20:39 | Updated: 18 September 2014, 11:53

Gramophone's Artist of the Year 2013 popped in to the star-studded award ceremony to present this year's Artist of the Year Award.

When she found out to whom she was presenting the award, Alison Balsom said she was "just thrilled".

The violinist Leonidas Kavakos is "just the most incredible musician," she told Classic FM's John Suchet. "He transcends the instrument, so elegant and so refined and such a great communicator."

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Balsom also found time to discuss her new album Paris, John Suchet's recent choice for his Album of the Week.

The title for the album only emerged after all the tracks had been recorded, she revealed. "It must be something really deep inside me that drew me to Paris," she said.

She also has joined the debate about the rise in young people taking up learning rock music instruments in preference to more traditional ones - it's perhaps no wonder she spent the day launching the pTrumpet, an entirely plastic instrument designed to encourage more performers to take lessons.

"I don't think it matters what the instrument is," said Balsom. "Those instruments are very much the instruments that you can play in an ensemble with other people - and that very important for young people."