September 30 2002
Stephen Hough’s two-disc set of the Saint-Saëns piano concertos (Hyperion CDA 67331/32) has been awarded the Gramophone Awards 2002 Record of the Year.
It also took the Concerto Award prize earlier in the evening, at a packed Barbican Hall ceremony, which included performances from Jonathan Lemalu (who won the Début Award), Soile Isokoski (winner of the Editor's Choice Award), Maxim Vengerov (Artist of the Year) and Mirella Freni (winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award).
The London Symphony Orchestra performed throughout the evening, conducted by Sir Colin Davis, Justin Brown and Jason Lai. Jennifer Pike, the BBC Young Artist of the Year, also performed.
Hough's recording, on the Hyperion label, was one of those discs that had Record of the Year written on it from the moment it arrived for review. In the voting stages it featured as first place on almost half of the Second Round jury forms, with a lot of second places to support that accolade.
Very stiff competition came from the LSO Live recording of Berlioz’s Les Troyens which split the voting rather more, with a good number of first places offset by some lower placings, helping the Saint-Saëns to victory. It was, in honesty, a two-horse race, but one in which Hough edged ahead with his fantastic achievement.
For a complete list of the 2002 Awards, visit the awards section of the Gramophone Magazine site by clicking here.