8th March 2004 - The British Phonographic Industry (BPI)
announce today that classical music sales have enjoyed
an increase in 2003 according to final year-end figures.
The best selling classical album of the year was Pure
by Hayley Westenra, the 16 year-old New Zealand singing
sensation signed by Decca.
its release in 2003 Hayley Westenra's debut international
album Pure has sold over 1 million copies and is still
to be released in 80% of the world. The album turned
10x Platinum in Hayley's native country New Zealand
(making her the fastest selling local artist of all
time), Platinum in Australia, Gold in Singapore and
Hong Kong and 2x Platinum in the UK. Hayley has now
become the fastest-selling classical artist in U.K history.
President of the Decca Music Group, Costa Pilavachi
says " The success of Hayley Westenra has been
phenomenal. It has been fantastic to see such a talent
being embraced by the classical and pop worlds alike.
It's a real achievement for us".
2004 the Decca Music Group celebrates the 75th anniversary
of its first recordings which will be marked by a number
of exciting new releases. This includes a new album
by the Maltese tenor Joseph Calleja, a collection of
Handel arias by the soprano superstar Renée Fleming,
a third album of Great Tenor Arias by the Peruvian Juan
Diego Flôrez, and the second album by the Dutch
violinist Janine Jansen of "Vivaldi's Four Seasons".
Following on from Cecilia Bartoli's highly acclaimed
Salieri album, which became the best-selling core classical
album of 2003 in the UK, Decca will be releasing Cecilia
Bartoli The DVD collection. A 3 DVD box-set comprising
of the original and unique ‘Portrait’ documentary, filmed
at the outset of her career, plus Cecilia’s acclaimed
1998 recital with Jean-Yves Thibaudet at Vicenza’s Teatro
Olimpico, and her definitive interpretation of Rossini’s
the crossover side, Decca Music Group sees the return
of Bond, the best-selling classical string quartet of
all time, who will release their new album Classified
in June 2004. The Manchester based violin duo Duel,
discovered by legendary producer Pete Waterman, will
continue to promote their debut release, and Dominic
Miller, Sting's legendary guitarist, will release his
debut classical album Shapes. The Hayley Westenra phenomenon
is set to continue with the release of Pure in the USA
and Canada in April 2004.
Also: HWI coverage of the BPI article from yesterday