Violinists dominate Classic Brit Awards

Andre Rieu and Tasmin Little Dutch violinist Andre Rieu and Britain's Tasmin Little were among the award recipients

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Three virtuoso violinists were feted at this year's Classic Brit Awards, held at London's Royal Albert Hall.

Britain's Tasmin Little received the Critics' Award for her acclaimed album Elgar: Violin Concerto, while Norway's Vilde Frang took home a newcomer prize.

Dutch violinist Andre Rieu, meanwhile, won the coveted album of the year award for Moonlight Serenade, recorded with the Johann Strauss Orchestra.

Elsewhere the British conductor Antonio Pappano was named best male artist.

Pappano, music director of the Royal Opera House, had also been shortlisted for the Critics' Award, which he received at last year's ceremony.

Estonia's Arvo Part was named composer of the year at Thursday's event, hosted by Myleene Klass, while Il Divo were crowned artists of the decade.

Il Divo Operatic quartet Il Divo were crowned artists of the decade at Thursday's ceremony

Mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins, German violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and trumpeter Alison Balsom - recipient of the best female artist prize - were among the performers.

Late composer John Barry, best known for his contributions to the James Bond films, was honoured posthumously with an outstanding contribution to music award.

Lyricist Don Black collected the prize, which came ahead of a grand finale celebrating some of Barry's finest scores.

This part of the show saw Dame Shirley Bassey take to the stage to perform Bond theme Goldfinger with the London Chamber Orchestra.

The event, to be televised on ITV1 on 29 May, also featured a performance from tenor Alfie Boe with the cast of Les Miserables.

Presenters included Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys, broadcaster Angela Rippon and cellist Julian Lloyd Webber.

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