I'm hardly the blog of record for stuff like this, but since I just heard this, I thought I would offer congratulations to Kaija Saariaho, the latest recipient of the Nemmers Composition Prize.
The press release says this was announced April 2, but I haven't heard anything about it. From the release:
"Saariaho was cited by the selection committee for 'transforming avant-garde techniques into a world of luminous, shifting color and emotional depth, mirroring the human experience.'"
Saariaho's response was, ". . . I was especially happy to read the prize citation because it indicates that I have been successful in reaching some of my musical goals."
She will be in residence at Northwestern University's School of Music next year, and during the 2009-2010 season the Chicago Symphony will perform one of her works. We can start placing bets (such as, when the little demons buy themselves little iceskates) on when L'Amour de Loin or Adriana Mater will show up at the Opera House. But the Symphony will probably come through for us, eventually.