The 2017 Polar Music Prize is awarded to the singer, musician and composer Sting, real name Gordon Sumner, from Wallsend in Northumberland. Sting grew up in a shipyard town in northeastern England. As a child his thoughts and dreams roamed as far as the ships that sailed from his town. Internal and external travel has also characterised his music. As a member of the trio The Police, and later as a solo artist, Sting has never sat back and rested on his laurels; he has put down his anchor in more musical harbours than perhaps any other artist of his generation. As a composer, Sting has combined classic pop with virtuoso musicianship and an openness to all genres and sounds from around the world. Sting is a true citizen of the world, who has also been indefatigable in using his position as an arena-filling artist to promote human rights.
The 2017 Polar Music Prize is awarded to musician and composer Wayne Shorter from Newark, New Jersey. For Wayne Shorter, music is a means of learning more about all aspects of life and the universe. He has himself aptly described his work as “drilling for wisdom”. With his soprano and tenor saxophones he is an explorer. Over the course of an extraordinary career, he has constantly sought out untravelled paths. Wayne Shorter has worked in epoch-making groups such as Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Miles Davis’s Second Great Quintet and Weather Report. He has played on many key albums with Joni Mitchell. As a solo artist he has been making albums for six decades, and he has written a number of the most enduring compositions in the history of jazz. Without the musical explorations of Wayne Shorter, modern music would not have drilled so deep.
The Polar Music Prize was founded in 1989 by the late Stig ”Stikkan” Anderson, a true legend in the history of Swedish popular music. Stig Anderson was the publisher, lyricist and manager of ABBA, and he played a key role in their enormous success. The name of the prize stems from Anderson’s legendary record label, Polar Music.
The Polar Music Prize celebrates the power and importance of music and is awarded to individuals, groups or institutions for international recognition of excellence in the world of music.
The Polar Music Prize awards two Laureates in order to celebrate music in all its various forms and to emphasize the original intention of the Polar Music Prize: To break down musical boundaries by bringing together people from all the different worlds of music.
The board of the Polar Music Prize Foundation consists of representatives from the Stig Anderson family, SKAP (The Swedish Society of Songwriters, Composers and Authors) and STIM (The Swedish Performing Rights Society). The task of scrutinizing nominations submitted and selecting the ultimate Laureates is empowered The Polar Music Award Committee comprising of internationally renowned artists and musicians as well as other key figures in the Swedish music industry.
High-resolution images of the Laureates can be downloaded below.
Tanja Määttä – Press Coordinator
Phone: +46-723-60 97 17
For International Press:
Claire Singers Consultants:
T: 0044 7545 377928