SSO third in Gramophone's Orchestra of the Year Award

The Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) has bagged third place in Gramophone's Orchestra of the Year Award.

SSO, the only Asian orchestra in the running, was pipped to the top spot by the Minnesota Orchestra, which came in first, and the Accademia Bizantina, from Italy.

The top three were announced at an awards show on Tuesday, held virtually on medici.tv and Gramophone's website and YouTube channel.

SSO's chief conductor Hans Graf said in a statement: "Music has a universal power to lift spirits and this recognition is an encouragement for the SSO, as we continue our work in a time greatly affected by the pandemic. We thank our supporters for voting for us and will remain committed to continue touching lives through our music."

Gramophone, a well-known classical music magazine, launched the Gramophone Classical Music Awards in 1977. The awards come in various categories and are regarded as the Oscars of the classical music world.

The other nominees for the Orchestra of the Year Award - the only award determined through public voting - were the Academy of Ancient Music, Bamberger Symphoniker, Berliner Philharmoniker, The Cleveland Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Montreal, Philharmonia Orchestra and Tonhalle-Orchester Zurich.

Gramophone had shortlisted 10 contenders for Orchestra of the Year, before letting the music-loving community decide on the winning ensemble.

Singapore Symphony Group's chief executive Chng Hak-Peng said: "We are very honoured to be placed alongside the world's leading orchestras which have large home audience bases and a long tradition of recordings.

"This is a remarkable milestone in the orchestra's 42-year journey and would not have been possible without the support of the people of Singapore and the orchestra's international fans."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 07, 2021, with the headline 'SSO third in Gramophone's Orchestra of the Year Award'. Subscribe