Dr. Alexander Burh will helm Universal Music's new Mercury Classics label.

Mercury is rising. Universal Music Group announced yesterday it is launching Mercury Classics, a new classical music label. The new venture aims to be an "artist and repertoire centre" championing young or adventurous musicians, to sit alongside its existing Deutsche Grammophon and Decca classical labels.

The label will be headed by Deutsche Grammophon powerhouse Dr Alexander Buhr, who helped launch the careers of world-renowned Chinese pianist Lang Lang and American violinist Hilary Hahn. He was also responsible for Tori Amos' 2011 classical departure, "Night Of Hunters".

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Dr Buhr said he was looking forward to working with artists who are searching for their own way of approaching classical music. He told Billboard, "There is so much outstanding talent out there: remarkable artists who have developed their own unique take on performing, on writing and taking inspiration from classical music - be it firmly rooted in its core traditions, or pushing at its edges." He added, "Collaborating with these artists to bring their ideas to a wide audience is the label's main ambition."

Burh will continue to work with Tori Amos and award-winning guitarist Karadaglic - whose debut album "Mediterraneo" knocked charts stalwart and waltz king Andre Rieu off the top classical spot last year - on a joint basis with all future projects (details of which are to be confirmed) to be developed exclusively for Mercury Classics.