Words by Ake Holmquist for Sofia Gubaidulina

and Miriam Makeba

The Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina has been awarded the Polar Music Prize 2002, which is awarded annually for outstanding musical accomplishment to several personalities and institutions in the area of popular music as well as serious music. This year's second prize winner is the South African Miriam Makeba.

The prize was presented in Stockholm on 27 May 2002 by King Carl Gustav XVI of Sweden in the presence of Crown Princess Victoria during a festive ceremony.

Ake Holmquist, the Permant Secretary of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music and the chairman of the Polar Prize foundation said:

“Sofia Gubaidulina and Miriam Makeba: the Polar Prize is not a music competition. The Prize rewards an artistry that is unique and singular, that leaves an indelible imprint on our time and leads the way into the future. You both are such artists. Your voices have been and are being heard the world over, have sounded regardless of the world outside and have been testimony, under oppression, to the fact that nothing and no one can silence music. There is only one Sofia Gubaidulina, one Miriam Makeba – a fact to which this year’s Polar Prize gives full and due recognition."