The last nine Bach prize winners were men

The last nine Bach prize winners were men


norman lebrecht

February 13, 2015

The Royal Academy of Music has broken its duck. The tenth winner of its Bach Prize is violinist Rachel Podger.


The £10,000 award is for advances in Bach performance or scholarship.

Previous winners are:  Professor Christoph Wolff, András Schiff, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Peter Schreier, Professor John Butt, Thomanerchor Leipzig, Masaaki Suzuki, Murray Perahia and Ton Koopman.


  • DLowe says:

    So instead of focusing on the *last* nine winners, why not focus on the fact that this one is a woman? A poor headline.

    • william osborne says:

      The headline provides interesting comparisons, especially considering that over 60% of the violinists in UK orchestras are women.

  • Jan de Jong says:

    I think Norman has touched a string. In the right way even.

  • Branimir says:

    Sorry, captcha number became my msg.

    I wanted to ask, what to do in future? To change the propositions by declaring which year which sex should be given this and all other rewards? To hire the conductors, soloists and orchestra members by the same rule? But then would it not be fair to equally apply ethnic and racial criteria as well?
    Are there any other complaints against those 9 previous winners beside their sex?

  • Milka says:

    Male or not this latest winner in the” lunge” from note to noted school of so called Bach
    playing is the nonsense that passes for Bach scholarship, plus all
    the other baloney that goes with the ” imagining” how the works where played . If one
    can’t find a cathedral in which to record then sound engineering takes care of it, adding another lame brained scholarship approach . I believe it was Robert Schumann who
    felt compelled to add piano parts to the sonatas and partitas. This latest only proves that there
    are stupids, both male or female that win prizes .

    • Ks. Christopher Robson says:

      Dear Milka, I really must take exception to your rant and what you seem to imply.

      Rachel Podger is a player of the highest calibre both musically and technically. She is also a very highly educated and deeply committed musician academically. Nothing she has done in her career “passes” for Bach scholarship, nothing she has done in her career “passes” for anything. She has spent years researching the music she plays, Bach being a particular subject in that respect, and her performances are all genuinely inspired by her love of the music, her love of the instrument, and the love of the composer – all three of which elements she has spent most of her playing career researching in order to bring some enlightenment to her performances.

      What really is your problem???!!!

      • Milka says:

        You seem to have the problem , I made an observation which does not seem to sit well
        with your sense of violin aesthetics & Ms. Podger ; to me the only enlightenment brought to the performances
        however researched they may be ,is that much of the” enlightenment” is but musically inept guess work and if it suits your standards then well and good .