The Hermitage Artist Retreat and the Greenfield Foundation are proud to announce that Composer-Pianist Vijay Iyer is the winner of the $30,000 Greenfield Prize, awarded this year in the field of music. Iyer will receive the award at a special celebration dinner on April 1, 2012 in Sarasota, FL. Serving on the jury that selected Iyer were Linda Golding, past president of Boosey & Hawkes, Inc. music publishers and founder of The Reservoir; Jennifer Koh, solo violinist and prolific recitalist, and Limor Tomer, general manager of concerts and lectures at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
“I’m honored, delighted, and surprised by this award,” said Mr. Iyer. “It’s rare and astonishing for my work to be embraced on such a scale, and it’s a particularly special honor coming from the Greenfield Prize’s interdisciplinary perspective. This award will make a tremendous difference in my life in the coming year. It enables me to focus less on ‘career’ and more on art and community, two powerful and interrelated forces that can nourish and sustain us all. For this opportunity I am tremendously grateful.”
We are very excited to make this announcement. Since the Prize is awarded in rotation to three different arts disciplines, every year we have the great privilege of working with the top people in whatever field the prize is to be awarded in. Linda, Jennifer and Limor did a wonderful job. We look forward to April 1 when we not only present Vijay with the Prize, but also begin the two-year process of working with him and provide whatever support he needs to realize his commission.
Vijay Iyer is a Grammy-nominated composer-pianist who has been described by Pitchford as “one of the most interesting and vital young pianists in jazz today,” by The New Yorker as one of “today’s most important pianists…extravagantly gifted… brilliantly eclectic,” and by Los Angeles Weekly as a “boundless and deeply important young star.” He was voted the 2010 Musician of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association and named one the 50 most Influential Global Indians” by GQ India. Iyer has released 15 albums, including the Grammy-nominated “Historicity” (2009), which was named #1 Jazz album of the year in the NY Times, LA Times, Chicago Tribune, Detroit Metro Times, NPR, PopMatters.com, Village Voice Jazz Critics Poll and Downbeat International Critics Poll. Among his many awards, Iyer has received the Alpert Award of the Arts and the New York Foundation of the Arts Fellowship.
On March 13 Iyer is releasing his new CD titled Accelerando (ACT Music + Vision). In addition to his performing life, he has composed on commission for the Silk Road Ensemble, Brentano String Quartet, American Composer’s Orchestra, Ethel, and filmmakers Bill Morrison (who will be in residence at the Hermitage this spring) and Haile Gerima.
The producing partner for this year’s Greenfield Prize winner will be the La Musica International Chamber Music Festival. As producing partner they will be a resource to Mr. Iyer as he completes his commission and they will be premiering the work in the 2014 festival.
You can find much more information on Vijay Iyer on his website at www.vijay-iyver.com. And you can see Mr. Iyer in concert recorded recently (January 12, 2012) on the National Public Radio site at http://www.npr.org/event/music/144979104/vijay-iyer-trio-live-in-concert?sc=fb&cc=fmp&fb_source=message.