Anna Larsson: “It is not good that it looks so”
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Cecilia Bartoli and Max Martin won the polar music prize in 2016. Photo: TT
the polar music prize set up by the Swab Anderson wants to be the world’s largest music prize. But Kulturnytts audit shows that 90 per cent of the prize winners are north americans or europeans, and that 78 per cent are men.
Since 1992, 50 Polarpris been distributed in the genres classical music and popular music. On its website, it says that the winners from many different countries, cultures and continents have received the prize from the king’s hand and that the price is to be distributed without any restrictions as regards the countries.
But Kulturnytts review, shows that 90 percent of the winners come from north America or Europe. Only one of the awards have gone to Asia, two to Africa and two to south America. And 78 per cent of the winners are men.
the opera singer Anna Larsson does not think that the numbers are sending some good signals:
” It is clear that there is a problem. It is not good that it looks so. You want to have representation from all parts of the sex. It is a matter of course, when you share out the price.
Anna Larsson mean that classical music, or art music, which she prefers to call it, is after when it comes to gender equality. But she doesn’t think it is any excuse.
– You might have to take the glasses on: it would be fun to give it every two years to a woman, and every two years to a man.
Alfons Karabuda is chairman of the polarprisnämnden and has been responsible for the selection of awardees since 2009.
– Since the new jury took over look it much more equal. Previous winners and how to choose them have been a reflection of how the music industry looked like. You have not taken the slightly more difficult way, namely, to identify women who have not always been seen as much in the history of music, even though they clearly made at least as strong efforts.
for geographical spread, Alfons Karabuda self-critical.
– the Width and the representativity is available, but it can be much better. The taken countries and there is much to do.
How do you think it affects the perception of the polar music prize in the rest of the world when it almost only goes to the westerners?
” I think it plays a major role for a country and a region to see its winners get the prize. It is not without reason that Senegal really lifted the polar music prize when Yossou N’dour received the award.
That so many of the prize winners come from the western world depends on who is sitting in the jury, think Alfons Karabuda. Thus, from now on, take the help of the International music council that was established by UNESCO. Regional committees from around the world will contribute with the expertise when it comes to their own music history and the possible prize-winners.
– I think It will give a very different geographical balance, so I’m really looking forward to it.
polar music prize in numbers
the Swedish polar music prize has since 1992 been presented every year to “individuals, groups or institutions”, usually two recipients per dividend.
a Total of 50 awards have been distributed.
Since the start, has 39 men (78%) and 10 women (20 per cent) received the award. The year 1992 was one of the prices to the baltic states.
42 per cent of winners come from the USA, 46% from Europe. There are a total of 90 per cent of the prize winners from north America or Europe. The other will be one from Asia, two from south America and two from Africa.
In our compilation included Russia in Europe.