Denmark’s Léonie Sonning Music Prize Announces 2022 Winner


The most prominent international music prize in Denmark, the Léonie Sonning’s Music Prize, has been awarded since 1959 to an internationally renowned composer, musician, conductor, or singer within classical music. Its first recipient was composer Igor Stravinsky.

Pierre-Laurent Aimard, 64, is the eighth pianist to win the prize and will receive it during a solo concert with the Royal Danish Orchestra with conductor Sylvain Cambreling on October 7, 2022. 

Held in Denmark’s DR Koncerthuset for the first time, the ceremony is part of a larger festival featuring Aimard from October 4 to 9, 2022.

In addition, Aimard will perform two more solo recitals and give talks and masterclasses at Denmark’s Black Diamond, Royal Danish Academy of Music, and Aarhus Concert Hall. He will also perform on May 29 at Humlebæk’s Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

“It is a pleasure for The Royal Danish Orchestra to play at the Léonie Sonning’s award ceremony 2022,” said the ensemble’s deputy director, Adam Stadnicki. [Aimard] is ultimately one of the world’s very best and most sought-after pianists, so getting him to come to Copenhagen and play three works with him is extremely inspiring for the orchestra.”

Presenting the award is the Léonie Sonning’s Music Foundation, which was founded in 1965 and named after the widow of editor Carl Johan Sonning. Candidates for its prizes are nominated by the foundation’s board.

“For the last 40 years, Aimard has been one of the most groundbreaking and refined pianists,” stated the foundation’s chairman Esben Tange. “With his signature artistic style that encompasses sensible sound, a strong intellect, and a sparkling expressivity, he has been pushing the boundaries within the art of the piano,” Tange continued.

“And with his visionary programs where composers from different eras are brought together, he has inspired the creation of new music, new interpretations of the classics and conveyed the qualities of lesser-known music.”

“It is a great honor and joy to be receiving the Léonie Sonning Music Prize,” Aimard added. “I am very touched that I have been considered alongside other remarkable and distinguished artists who have had the privilege of receiving this distinction.”

For more information and award ceremony’s concert programs, click here.


Among Aimard’s many accolades include the 2017 International Ernst von Siemens Music Prize, a GRAMMY, and Germany’s 2009 Schallplattenkritik Honorary Prize. His collaborators have included Karlheinz Stockhausen, George Benjamin, and Pierre Boulez.



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