Page last updated at 07:53 GMT, Friday, 9 May 2008 08:53 UK

Classical Brit for Lloyd Webber

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See the moment Andrew Lloyd-Webber received his award for outstanding achievement in music at the Classical Brits.

British composer Andrew Lloyd Webber has been honoured with a prize for outstanding achievement in music at the Classical Brits awards.

As he accepted his first ever Brit from ITV chairman Michael Grade, the 60-year-old said he was "the wrong person" to be receiving the accolade.

"It should go to my brother Julian who is a fantastic cellist and has been a tireless fan and advocate," he said.

TV presenter Myleene Klass hosted the event at London's Royal Albert Hall.

Lord Lloyd-Webber's prize comes more than 20 years after his Requiem Mass won a Grammy for best contemporary classical composition.

After Thursday's ceremony, the impresario joked he was too old to receive the gong, which he dedicated to his late father William.

'Artistic differences'

Operatic soprano Anna Netrebko was recognised at the ceremony for the second year in succession, taking home the prize for female artist of the year.

The male equivalent was presented to conductor Sir Colin Davis, president of the London Symphony Orchestra.

The album of the year prize was awarded to vocal quartet Blake, four former choirboys who signed a five-album deal with record label Universal last summer.

It is only the second time in the awards' history that the prize has been won by a debut album.

Previous winners include Russell Watson, Welsh soprano Katherine Jenkins and Sir Paul McCartney, who won last year for his classical album Ecce Cor Meum (Behold My Heart).

Nichola Benedetti
Violinist Nichola Benedetti was named young British classical performer

Violinist Nichola Benedetti was named young British classical performer.

The 21-year-old Scot had been shortlisted for the prize on two previous occasions.

Other winners included cellist Steven Isserlis, who received the critics' choice prize, and James Newton Howard, whose score for the film Blood Diamond was named soundtrack of the year.

The annual ceremony was established in 2000 to recognise the outstanding achievements of classical musicians and the growth of classical music sales in the UK.

The event, which included performances by Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli, will be broadcast on ITV1 on 15 May.

Violinist Nigel Kennedy was scheduled to appear but withdrew after claiming he had been prevented from performing with female string quartet Bond.

Organisers confirmed "artistic differences" had prevented the musician from appearing.


SEE ALSO
Kennedy 'ousted' from Brit show
08 May 08 |  Entertainment
Classical Brits to honour Webber
08 Apr 08 |  Entertainment
Webber plants Hollyoaks actress
01 Feb 08 |  Entertainment
McCartney scoops Classical Brit
04 May 07 |  Entertainment
Sting on Classical Brit shortlist
02 Apr 07 |  Entertainment

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