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Lera Auerbach Wins 2005 Hindemith Prize

The Russian-American composer Lera Auerbach has won this years Hindemith Prize, consisting of 20,000 Euros and awarded annually during the course of the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. This unanimous decision was made by an eight-member jury. The awards ceremony will take place on 11 August 2005 at Reinbek castle. I didnt even know that I was being seriously considered for this award, was the happy reaction of the composer, pianist and poet all-in-one. Sonia Wieder-Atherton, violoncello and the composer herself will perform the European premiere of the Sonata No. 1 for violoncello and piano at the awards ceremony in Reinbek.

Following her great success with the ballet Prludes CV premiered in 2003 by the Hamburg State Opera, ballet director John Neumeier asked her for a new full-length ballet. The world premiere of Auerbachs ballet version of the Andersen fairy tale The Little Mermaid took place on 15 April 2005 at the newly-opened Copenhagen Opera House. I felt a great responsibility while working on this, said the 31-year-old composer. Andersen and his Mermaid are, after all, national symbols for the Danes. Auerbach was in Hamburg in late April for the premiere of her String Quartet, and a stay as composer-in-residence at the Bremen Music Festival is planned for the autumn of 2005. Her new work Dialogues on Stabat Mater after Pergolesi for violin, viola and chamber orchestra will be performed there on 13 September. The soloists are Gidon Kremer (violin) and Ula Uljona (viola) with the Kremerata Baltica. Two days later, the work will received its Swiss premiere at the Lucerne Festival. Auerbach has dedicated her composition Dreams and Whispers of Poseidon to the victims of the flood catastrophe. The piece was premiered by the American Youth Symphony on 27 March in Los Angeles.

Works by Auerbach are scheduled for performance at the International Beethoven Festival in Bonn, which will be concentrating on Russian music during the coming year.