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13 March 2024

Nile Rodgers To Receive 2024 Polar Music Prize

Nile Rodgers Polar Music Prize
Photo: A. PAES/Alamy Stock Photo
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Nile Rodgers and composer Esa-Pekka Salonen have been chosen as the recipients of the 2024 Polar Music Prize.

The Chic legend and the renowned Finnish conductor will receive Prize money of one million Swedish Kroner (around £75,000 and $94,000) when they are made laureates at a ceremony on May 21 in Stockholm, Sweden at the Grand Hotel.

Rodgers – whose producing and writer credits include hits for David Bowie, Madonna, Sister Sledge, and Duran Duran to Lady Gaga, Christina Aguilera, and more recently, Beyonce – said: “This is a tremendous honour for me, I’ve had a love affair with the people of Sweden for as long as I can remember and your early acknowledgement of the art of people of colour from Eric Dolphy to Jimi Hendrix is very important to me. It’s particularly meaningful as so many of my favourite songwriters from Bjorn and Benny, Max Martin and my dear friend the late Tim “Avicii” Bergling have changed music all over the world. I’m so looking forward to coming to Stockholm to receive this amazing award.”

Esa-Pekka Salonen is director of the San Francisco Symphony and conductor laureate of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philharmonic Orchestra in London and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.

Marie Ledin, managing director of the Polar Music Prize, commented: “In Nile Rodgers, we honour a ground-breaking pioneer whose legacy spans his work as co-founder of CHIC and as record producer and creator behind so much of the world’s greatest music. Nile’s impact in pop culture is incomparable and his timeless songs will continue to delight, uplift and inspire for many years to come.

“Esa-Pekka Salonen is an innovator. His artistic curiosity, creativity and forward-thinking approach to composing and conducting paves the way in classical music. He is a master of tone, perfectly balancing sound and emotion to produce and lead music that deeply moves the listener.

“We are delighted to welcome both Nile Rodgers and Esa-Pekka Salonen as the 2024 Polar Music Prize Laureates. They are truly two icons of contemporary and classical music.”

Previous recipients of the Polar Music Prize include, Sir Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, Sting and Joni Mitchell, and Iggy Pop.

The Swedish award – which is known as the Nobel Prize of Music – was founded in 1989 by Stig Anderson, best known as the manager of Swedish pop icons ABBA

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