Naxos - Naxos Founder and Chairman Klaus Heymann Celebrates 80th Birthday
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10/20/2016 Naxos Founder and Chairman Klaus Heymann Celebrates 80th Birthday

The Naxos Licensing team celebrates the birthday of our founder, chairman, mentor, and friend - Klaus Heymann this week.

Klaus Heymann, our German-born founder, entrepreneur, and visionary force in the classical music recording industry, celebrates his 80th birthday on October 22, 2016. His name needs no introduction to people familiar with our label, a name synonymous with making classical music available to a much wider audience than was the case prior to his founding in 1987 of Naxos, the CD label that famously undercut the major labels in terms of price, without compromising on quality. Naxos now boasts a catalogue of such impressive depth and breadth that it attracts global admiration. The label itself celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2017. The Naxos story began in Hong Kong, the founding chairman’s home since 1967, but the label is now complemented by numerous business extensions it has since generated worldwide… truly, the house that Klaus built.

Klaus Heymann led the field in foreseeing the inevitable synthesis of recorded classical music with the internet as its vehicle for distribution. In 2002, Mr Heymann pioneered the concept of subscription streaming services four years before the arrival of Spotify, having launched the industry’s first streaming platform in 1996. Naxos Music Library now offers access to more than 120,000 CD-length recordings from 800 labels and similar libraries now exist for jazz recordings, spoken word and videos, as well as the Naxos Radio site.

Klaus Heymann’s contribution to the classical music recording industry is unparalleled. Naxos Artist Marin Alsop, music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, who became the first woman to conduct the BBC’s Last Night of the Proms in 2013, made this comment on the occasion of Naxos’ 25th anniversary:

“I think speaking of Klaus’ influence on classical music is too narrow. His vision as an innovative entrepreneur has resulted in the rebirth of a struggling industry. That is not only good for classical music, but for society at large."

-Marin Alsop

We send our warmest greetings to Klaus Heymann on the occasion of his 80th birthday, together with best wishes for continued prosperity to both himself, his wife, the distinguished violinist Takako Nishizaki (centre), his son Rick (right) and their extended family (front).

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  • Fernando Rodríguez
    October 21, 2016, 3:56 am

    Dear Klaus, Happy 80th birthday. Your friend and business partner in Spain,
    Fernando Rodríguez (Polo Digital Multimedia)

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