The Recording Academy has bestowed upon the Minnesota Orchestra an honor made poignant by music director Osmo Vänskä's recent resignation: a Grammy nomination, in the category of Best Orchestral Performance, for the orchestra's recording of Sibelius's first and fourth symphonies for the BIS label. Under Vänskä, the Minnesota Orchestra were regarded as arguably the world's premier interpreters of the Finnish composer's work; this is the most recent of multiple Grammy nominations Vänskä and the orchestra received, including a previous nomination for their recording of Sibelius's second and fifth symphonies.
Additionally, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra's recording of Winter Morning Walks with Dawn Upshaw was nominated in the Best Classical Vocal Solo category. Winter Morning Walks composer Maria Schneider also received a nomination in the Best Contemporary Classical Composition category. The SPCO previously won a Grammy for its 1980 recording of Copland's Appalachian Spring with conductor Dennis Russell Davies.
Among the other recipients of 2014 Grammy nominations were the New York Polyphony, whose Times Go By Turns is a contender in the Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance category. That recording was featured on Classical MPR's New Classical Tracks in September. Also featured in our New Classical Tracks series was composer Dobrina Tabakova, whose String Paths is nominated for Best Classical Compendium.
The 56th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony will be held on January 26 at L.A.'s Staples Center.
What an accomplishment for the locked-out musicians. Imagine what they could do if the MOA board was actually behind them, supporting this world-class work...instead of outright destroying it.
I would sure like to know how many of the MOA board members have listened carefully to this remarkable recording. Given that it is now public knowledge that the executive board chair, Jon Campbell, never goes to hear classical concerts,
it's hard to believe that the board can even comprehend the level of destruction they are causing.
Being from the Southern California area, I have only recently become aware of the sad state of affairs in Minnesota. I do admire the orchestra greatly, as I have bought many of their recordings, first with Oui on Reference recordings, then with Vanska on Bis. I utterly do not understand how the governing board of the orchestra can allow the destruction of such a national treasure. A 30% cut in salary??? Come now. There must be some way of disbanding this board and bringing in a new board who really cares about continuing the level of excellence of this orchestra. I believe it would be a better idea to use up more of the endowment money now and keep the music playing for a few more years rather than to kill it off prematurely.