$100k prize for young classical musicians announced

3 November 2014, 06:14 | Updated: 9 November 2014, 11:22

A new annual music prize for classical musicians aged between 18 and 35 has been announced by Warner Music.

Billionaire industrialist Len Blavatnik, one of the world’s 50 richest people, is sponsoring a $100,000 cash prize for young classical musicians. The Warner Music Prize is named after the record company Blavatnik purchased in 2011.

The prize will be given out annually to an instrumentalist or singer between 18 and 35 years old. The winner of the prize, expected to be announced in the spring of 2015, will also be offered a recording deal with Warner. 

The Blavatnik Family Foundation has been active in funding the arts and sciences, according to Len Blavatnik. “One of the primary missions of our foundation is to support and encourage creative young people in a diversity of disciplines," he said. "Acknowledging and helping young musicians is essential if we are to see classical music thrive for generations to come.”

An advisory panel comprising classical musicians and industry professionals will choose the winner who, as well as the $100,000 prize, will perform at a Carnegie Hall gala on 27 October 2015. The proceeds from this concert will go to the Weill Music Institute and the Harmony Project, an after-school music program.