Apkalna, Skride honored for classical recordings

Two Latvian musicians, organist Iveta Apkalna and violinst Baiba Skride, are among this year’s winners of the Germany-based ECHO-Klassik award, a prestigious honor in the field of classical music, according to organizers.

Apkalna is the first organist named “Instrumentalist of the Year” since the award was established in 1994, according to her publicist. She shares the honor with four other musicians. Apkalna received the award for her 2004 album, Himmel & Hölle, recorded in St. Martin’s Church in Wangen/Allgau, Germany.

Skride was named one of two “New Generation Artists of the Year” for her 2004 recording, Bach, Bartók, Ysaye, in which she plays compositions by J.S. Bach, Bela Bartók and Eugene Ysaye.

The awards ceremony will be televised live Oct. 16 on Germany’s on ZDF channel.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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