Fazil Say receives 2016 Beethoven Prize

20 December 2016
Screen-Shot-2016-12-20-at-06.41.11-95639.png Say
One of the world’s most prestigious awards, given by the Bonn-based Beethoven Academy, has this year been awarded to Turkish pianist Fazil Say

The Beethoven Prize 2016 – one of the world’s most prestigious awards given by the Bonn-based Beethoven Academy – has this year been awarded to internationally acclaimed pianist Fazil Say.

Say appears on the cover of the current issue of Pianist.

The Turkish pianist received his award in Bonn on 17 December at the Kreuzkirche in Bonn, and performed the work by Turkish composer Asik Veysel ‘Kara Toprak’ (Black Soil) at the ceremony.

Performers at this year’s ceremony included last year’s Beethoven prize winner, the Syrian refugee Aeham Ahmad, who became a well-known figure as a pianist on the war-torn streets of Damascus. Others included the Turkish piano duo Ferhan and Ferzan Önder, Greek pianist Maria Ntokou, Armenian musician Ibrahim Keivo, Palestinian pianist Karim Said, and Bonn pianist Luisa Imorde, as well as other international artists.

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‘The International Beethoven Award is the most prestigious award in the musical community and is of course a source of pride for every musician,’ he told the Doğan News Agency. ‘This award also represents the ideals of Beethoven, who had strong ideas about friendship, freedom and peace. So I am very happy tonight,’ Say added. 

The International Beethoven Prize for Human Rights, Peace, Freedom, Poverty Reduction and Inclusion, initiated by Torsten Schreiber and Andreas Loesch, was awarded for the second time at the ceremony. The prize is endowed with 10,000 euros as well as a statue designed by German artist Dirk Wilhelm.

Photo: © Marco Borggreve