Christina Åstrand picked up the violin at the age of 4 and already as a 13-year old she was accepted at The Royal Academy of Music, Aarhus. Since the age of 22, she has held the position as concertmaster in the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, where she celebrated her 25th anniversary in 2018.
A Nordic prize for innovation
The Nordic Council Music Prize is awarded for musicianship of the highest standard, to a living composer one year and to an ensemble or individual musician the next. In both cases, the award is given to an artist who is considered innovative in his or her field.
The jury writes in the motivation for nominating Christina Åstrand:
”Her repertoire in both solo concerts and chamber works spans from the classical masterpieces to completely contemporary music, and she is famous for her always exciting and personal interpretation of the music.”
Alongside the career in the symphony orchestra, Christina Åstrand puts her musical energy into Duo Åstrand/Salo together with the pianist Per Salo. The duo is a creative sanction as she described it in an interview with DR (Danish Broadcasting Corporation) on occasion of her 25th anniversary:
“We have always been dedicated to Danish music, and lately we have spent a lot of time on the music of Friedrich Kuhlau. Together with the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, we have also commissioned a new work by the composer Allan Gravgaard Madsen, a double concerto for violin, piano and symphony orchestra, because it is important to us to contribute to the creation of something completely new.”
Romantic sonatas and brand new orchestra work
Recently Duo Åstrand/Salo recorded Friedrich Kuhlau’s Violin Sonatas vol. 2, and simultaneously initiated the publication of a new edition of all Kuhlau’s violin sonatas in collaboration with Edition·S.
The double concerto written by Allan Gravgaard Madsen will be premiered by Christina Åstrand, Per Salo and The Danish National Symphony Orchestra on 5 September 2019, and will furthermore be released on an album by Dacapo Records in 2020.
Read more about the Nordic Council Music Prize here.
Read more about Christina Åstrand here.