Tuesday’s (5/14) Agence France Presse reported from Stockholm, “British rock legend Peter Gabriel and Venezuelan conductor and composer Jose Antonio Abreu on Tuesday won the 2009 Polar Music Prize for their contributions to music, organisers in Sweden said. The winners will receive one million kronor (122,000 dollars, 92,000 euros) each and formally accept the prize from Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf at a ceremony in Stockholm on August 31. … The jury meanwhile lauded Abreu, an economist and composer, for creating the music network El Sistema. Established in 1979, the network, also known as Fesnojiv, now comprises some 30 professional orchestras and more than 300,000 youths attend its music schools and programmes. ‘Driven by a vision that the world of classical music can help improve the lives of Venezuela’s children, he created the music network El Sistema, which has given hundreds of thousands the tools to leave poverty,’ ” the Polar Prize organization said in a statement.

Posted May 14, 2009