The prize is awarded every three years to a musician who has made an exceptional contribution to the field of music.
Merle Kriss, president of the Glenn Gould foundation named for the Canadian pianist who died in 1982, noted the award exemplifies the musical excellence of a rare few, and "Maestro Previn's remarkable body of work and wide range of talents certainly make him a member of this exclusive club." Kriss said as part of the award, Previn will choose a protégé who will receive an $8,000 prize from the foundation.
Like Gould, who was a writer and composer as well as a musician, Previn, 75, is noted for his versatility, starting his career as a film composer and jazz pianist, then going on to become a world renowned conductor, heading the Houston Symphony, London Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic.
Previn scored music for films for several Hollywood studios, principally Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
He was the recipient of four Academy Awards.