Led Zeppelin and Valery Gergiev Together At Last

Published: 2005-11-08
Led Zeppelin have been named as one of two recipients of the 2006 Polar Music Prize, Sweden's most prestigious musical award, it was announced Monday (November 7). Also receiving the lifetime achievement-style honour at next year's ceremony will be Russian conductor Valery Gergiev, artistic and general director of St. Petersburg's famed Marinsky Theatre.

The prize, founded by former ABBA manager Stig Anderson in 1989 and awarded by the Royal Academy of Swedish Music, also carries with it a cheque for one million kronor (about US $125,000), or roughly the cost of one Led Zeppelin bar tab circa 1973.

In naming Zeppelin as recipients, the academy called the band "one of the great pioneers of rock", noting that the group's "playful and experimental music combined with highly eclectic elements has two essential themes: Mysticism and primal energy."

Surviving group members Robert Plant, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones are expected to travel to Sweden next year to receive the award from Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf. The ceremony will be held in Stockholm on May 22. Gergiev, who will become principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra in 2007, has already confirmed his intention to attend the event.

Typically, the award is split between artists from the fields of popular and classical music each year. Previous recipients of the prize include Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen and Quincy Jones.

Writer: Neil McDonald



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