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On Wednesday 4 March, as part of the 3rd edition of the Belgian Music Days in Mons, the Sabam for Culture Award for Contemporary Music was awarded to the talented Stéphane Orlando.
Stéphane Orlando is first and foremost a composer and improviser. He also teaches music writing, improvisation, piano, music history and music informatics. Furthermore, he is the artistic and musical director of the Original Sound Track Ensemble and chairman of the ‘Forum des Compositeurs’.
"Sabam not only manages the rights of talented authors in all artistic disciplines and music genres. Through Sabam for Culture, we support authors who excel in their profession. I am therefore very pleased to be able to present the Sabam for Culture Award to the winner of the best song in the contemporary music genre at the Belgian Music Days,” said Carine Libert, CEO of Sabam.
Motivation of the jury
Juror Martine Dumont-Mergeay put it this way: "His creativity is so versatile and his career so atypical that Stéphane Orlando - 41 this year - sometimes stayed under the radar of the general public. But his former professors - and today his students – as well as his colleagues and the audience at the Cinematek, where he has already accompanied more than 500 silent films, have always seen one of the most gifted musicians of his generation in this free and learned artist".
Since 2019 he has shown his unbridled creativity, as evidenced by Le Musée du Silence and Une dernière étreinte, presented at the Festival Loop 2019, and by L'Examen and Figuratine, two pseudo-documentaries for which Orlando provided the music and which were broadcast during the 2019 ‘Semaine du Son’. In November last year, Stéphane Orlando presented the opera Antigone in the Dark (libretto by Lorenzo Carola), which was very much appreciated by the jury of Sabam and which largely earned him his nomination for this award.
Composition of the jury
Michel Stockhem, musicologist, musician and currently managing director of ARTS² (Ecole supérieure des Arts de Mons)
Thomas Van Haeperen, musical director and head of programming of the Ensemble Sturm und Klang
Bruno Letort, director of the festival Ars Musica and producer at France Musique
Benjamin Maneyrol, artistic director in a private school and member of the collective of international musicians ‘Ensemble Fractales’
Martine Dumont-Mergeay, journalist and music critic at La Libre Belgique, Le Vif/L'Express and Musiq'3.
For the complete list of nominees, click here.