The Musicians Club of New York actively promotes worldwide orchestral performances of contemporary composers. In 1979, the Koussevitzky Foundation chose the Musicians Club of New York to administer the American International Music Fund, Inc., which was funded by Serge Koussevitzky. This fund was established to give recognition to Composers during their lifetime and to encourage the performance and appreciation of contemporary music. KIRA, the annual Serge & Olga Koussevitzky International Recording Award, is given to a living Composer for a recorded symphonic work, scored for not less than sixteen musicians. In addition to the Koussevitzky Foundation, Serge Koussevitzky's wife Olga, who served as President of the Musicians Club from 1962 to 1975, also willed the Club money, which was received upon the death of her niece, in 1991.
From 1963 to 1978, the prize was known as the Koussevitzky International Recording Award, but following the death of Olga in 1978, the award was officially renamed the Serge and Olga Koussevitzky International Recording Award. For many years, especially during its co-sponsorship periods with Musical America, it has come to be known simply as the KIRA. The Musicians Club of New York carries on the award in both Serge and Olga Koussevitzky's honor, as part of the Club's program in support of contemporary musicians.
LIST OF KIRA WINNERS BY YEAR
FOR INFORMATION ON THE 2016 VOCAL COMPETITION, CLICK HERE.
Through the Serge & Olga Koussevitzky Young Artist Awards, the Musicians Club of New York consistently identifies and presents some of the very best upcoming artists, and by cycling annually through strings, piano, winds/brass, voice, and occasionally other categories, the Club is able to identify a wide range of exceptional artists. A rigid application process requires either a letter of recommendation or a major competition prize, or, in the case of vocal, an audition recording. Every participant is respected from the beginning as a colleague by the Musicians Club of New York.
LIST OF YOUNG ARTIST AWARDS BY YEAR
First Prize - Michelle Bradley, soprano
Second Prize - Galeano Salas, tenor
Third Prize - Virginie Verrez, mezzo soprano
First Prize - Caleb Hudson, trumpet
Second Prize (tie) - Andy Cho, clarinet
Second Prize (tie) - Yen-Chen Wu, bassoon
First Prize - Meng-Sheng Shen
Second Prize - Yang Liu
Third Prize - Yue Chu
First Prize - Ha Young Jung, double bass
Second Prize - Tavi Ungerleider, cello
Third Prize - Katha Zinn, violin