Cellist Pieter Wispelwey and pianist Paolo Giacometti will be awarded the Brahms-Preis 2019.
Founded by Yehudi Menuhin, the Brahms-Gesellschaft Schleswig-Holstein has been honouring artists who have rendered outstanding contributions to Brahms' legacy since 1988, when the price was awarded to Leonard Bernstein and the Wiener Philharmoniker. Since then, laureates have included Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Simone Young and, in recent years, Christiane Karg, Herbert Blomstedt and Christoph Eschenbach. A full list of previous recipients can be found here.
Already in the 1990s, Wispelwey's recordings of Brahms' sonatas broke with hitherto known conventions and sparked a vivid debate among critics and audiencences about how to interpret Brahms' music. Since then, Wispelwey and Giacometti made a conscious decision to interpret Brahms' works in the context of Schubert's writing and have embarked on a venture together to record the complete duo works by Schubert and Brahms. A trailer of the fourth and most recent instalment of the six CDs can be seen here.
The award ceremony will take place on 17 May 2019.