News – Ring Award

“Der Freischütz”

Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe invites to a "Premierenfrühstück" (premiere-breakfast) for "Der Freischütz" moderated by RING AWARD's Heinz Weyringer, RING AWARD 17 winner and director Verena Stoiber and Opera Director Nicole Braunger. 


...the RING AWARD 2o website will go online!

Find out everything about the next RING AWARD including jury, prizes, submission, etc. on November 21st, 2018, for the offical kick-off of RING AWARD 20!

Stay tuned!


RING AWARD – New Executive Committee

The RING AWARD has a new executive committee: intendant Heinz Weyringer has been joined by the artistic directors Nora Schmid (Oper Graz), Iris Laufenberg (Schauspielhaus Graz) and Michael Schilhan (Next Liberty) as well as by the rector of the University of Music and the Performing Arts, Elisabeth Freismuth. The competition now has a strengthened organizational base for continuing its support of new talents in the musical theatre. 

The international RING AWARD is funded by the Province of Styria and the City of Graz. The next competition - RING AWARD 20 -  will be announced on November 21, 2018.

“La finta giardiniera”

Tatjana Gürbaca - RING AWARD 2000 - put "La finta giardiniera" on stage at Theater Winterthur with an enthusiastically agile ensemble and a lot of foam. Here some press excerpts:

"Gürbaca, meanwhile the favourite director of Opernhaus Zürich, works very plausibly with the contrast between appearance and reality. Each character develops a specific appearance, yet behind their masks and makeup naked humans come out with all their plights and desires." (NZZ, Thomas Schacher)

"’La finta giardiniera’ can do without watering pots and spades, all it needs are cleaning utensils and sparkling wit. The set is a maze of plexiglass doors, a hothouse of feelings; a hall of mirrors in which appearance and reality are mixed up."  (Luzerner Zeitung, Bettina Kugler)

”Gürbaca and her ensemble need little to create slapstick. Clever, precisely timed and truly funny slapstick, of the kind which Mozart intended and which you can hear in his music (or at times just put there as a commentary).” (Tagesanzeiger, Susanne Kübler)

"A soap opera in the best sense of the word.  The ensemble is brilliant in the foam." (SZ, Henrik Oerding)

“Così fan tutte”

RING AWARD 17 winners Valentin Schwarz and Andrea Cozzi took a fresh and humorous approach to "Così fan tutte" at Kammeroper, Theater an der Wien, in May 2018:

"A performance of the opera ’Così fan tutte’ is made ready to be staged. Despina bustles about as the assistant director while the director has quickly to step in for the missing Don Alfonso. A good, a witty start which in what follows offers the highly motivated ensemble an ideal setting for their performance." (Wiener Zeitung, Marion Eigl)



The projected RING AWARD 20 will be kicked off with an opening event November 21st 2018. There our next international competition for stage direction and design in the musical theatre will be officially announced, including the competition opera and the conditions for participation/submission. From this moment on entries will be accepted. Registration and submission deadline will be in August 2019. The semifinal-teams will be announced in September 2019.


Early in January 2020 the semifinal-teams will present their concepts to the public and the members of the international jury at Next Liberty, and nominations for the final will be announced.


End of June 2020 the RING AWARD 20 final will take place at Schauspielhaus Graz – three entirely different conceptions of one and the same opera performed in 24 hours! Jury and audience will root for their favourites. The winning team will be awarded a stage production with stage design by Nora Schmid (Oper Graz). Further prizes for productions at international opera houses may be awarded by members of the jury.

More information regarding RA 20 registration and procedures will be posted shorty on this website.

David Hermann

David Hermann, winner of RING AWARD 2000, staged Leoš Janáček’s “From the House of the Dead“ at Oper Frankfurt. The premiere on April 1st was followed on April 9th by David Hermann winning the award in the category “Rediscovered Work” at the International Opera Awards in London for his production of Ernst Krenek’s “Der Diktator; Schwergewicht, oder Die Ehre der Nation; Das geheime Königreich” (“The Dictator; Heavyweight, or “The Glory of  the Nation; The Secret Kingdom”).

Excerpts from the reviews of “From the House of the Dead”:

“Despite all its extremes in details, Hermann’s production, in conjunction with the stage design by Johannes Schütz, retains its consistent intensity, and exalted sentimentality is drily contrasted by a mountain of chairs placed on the stage. […] All in all, this is a performance of acute urgency, scenically and musically gripping.” (FAZ, Gerhard R. Koch)

“David Hermann, in his production of Janáček’s probably most bizarre and political opera, has everyone act with disturbing tenseness and avoids any bold and simple topicality. The images have a long-lasting effect.” (Deutschlandfunk, Elisabeth Richter)

“”From the House of the Dead“ takes about 90 minutes nonstop, a poignant  journey into complete hopelessness, which,  at Oper Frankfurt,  the French-German director David Hermann staged as a descent into hell, and this of all days at the Feast of the Resurrection, at Easter, because, as Hermann himself said, “The House of the Dead” reminded him of Dante’s Inferno. […] A splendid production.” (BR Klassik, Peter Jungblut)

RING AWARD winner receives Opera Award

Barbora Horáková Joly, RING AWARD 17  winner of the "Price of the City of Graz" won "Newcomer of the Year" at the International Opera Awards 2018 in London on Monday April 9th, 2018.

The Czech director was nominated in this category with five other directors, conductors and composers and was honored for her numerous successful productions in 2017.

More about International Opera Awards here.


Giacomo Meyerbeer's „L’Africaine – Vasco da Gama" was put on stage at Frankfurt Opera by the RING AWARD winners 2008, director Tobias Kratzer and costume and set designer Rainer Sellmaier.
In 2019 the successful duo will work in Bayreuth on "Tannhäuser" – excitement rising!

“Tobias Kratzer, working in Frankfurt, makes bolder speculations than unsuspecting opera audiences would dare to make. He surely is a master of cleverly arranged metamorphoses. He twists and warps plot motives without ever damaging their main artery. The result is compelling, even breath-taking.”
Frankfurter Rundschau, Hans-Klaus Jungheinrich

“Frankfurt turns a maritime drama into a space adventure. Kratzer and Sellmaier shift the parable about alienation into faraway galaxies [...]. Like this Meyerbeer may remain on the way up …“
Salzburger Nachrichten, Karl Harb

“The transfer of Meyerbeer’s last grand opéra into space works. Moreover, the future potential lying in the excessive variety of Mayerbeer’s heroic music is not covered up, at any rate, by the images of this production.
NZZ, Eleonore Büning

“The Rhinegold”

Congratulations to Verena Stoiber and Sophia Schneider – winners of RING AWARD 14 – on their excellent production of “The Rhinegold” as the kick-off of an all-female-directed “Ring of the Nibelung”-tetralogy at Theater Chemnitz. Here are some excerpts from the numerous enthusiastic reviews:

“When he [Alberich] bloodily cuts off the three girls’ golden curls at the end of the scene and leaves them ashamed and twisted with pain, the evil of the tetralogy begins: with the theft of the rhinegold, here portrayed as the robbery of womanhood and innocence. Director Verena Stoiber and designer Sophia Schneider have found a fascinating setting for the first scene of “The Rhinegold” – a successful starting signal for the new Chemnitz production of Wagner’s “Ring of the Nibelung”.
[…] Everything is wittily staged, with everyone fighting their own weaknesses and jealousies; Verena Stoiber shows clear characterizations, interspersed with all kinds of anecdotes.”
Die Deutsche Bühne, Ulrike Kolter

“I have not seen such a well-conceived, shrewd and sophisticated “Rhinegold“ as Verena Stoiber’s in a long time. Stoiber’s view is psychologically alert and deeply thought-out, but also political.”
Frankfurter Rundschau, Judith von Sternburg

International Opera Awards

RING AWARD winners nominated for the International Opera Awards

Once again the RING AWARD proves to be a prestigious stepping stone for international careers in the musical theatre. Three RING AWARD winners are among the finalists at the International Opera Awards 2018! A distinguished jury, chaired by John Allison, editor in chief of “Opera Magazine” and music critic for “The Daily Telegraph”, has chosen the finalists among thousands of entries from six continents.

Nominated in the category „Director“:

David Hermann (RING AWARD 2000 winner)

Tobias Kratzer (RING AWARD 2008 winner)

Nominated in the category „Newcomer“:

Barbora Horáková Joly (RING AWARD 2017 winner of the “Prize of the City of Graz”)

The award winners will be announced in April 2018, at a red carpet event in the London Coliseum.


Website International Opera Awards

opera awards


More RING AWARD prizes

Additional Prizes

Additional prizes of offers for stage productions are awarded by the following theatres and operas:

Semperoper Dresden prize, awarded by the designated director, Peter Theiler
Team B: Barbora Horáková Joly (CZ) / Cornelia Schmidt (D)

Two Theater an der Wien prizes, awarded by the director, Roland Geyer
Team C: Valentin Schwarz (A) / Andrea Cozzi (I)
Stage director Sergei Morozov (RUS), Team A

Staatstheater Cottbus prize, awarded by the director, Martin Schüler
Team C: Valentin Schwarz (A) / Andrea Cozzi (I)

Opéra et Orchestre National Montpellier prize, awarded by the director, Valérie Chevalier
Team C: Valentin Schwarz (A) / Andrea Cozzi (I)

Deutscher Oper Berlin prize, awarded by the director, Dietmar Schwarz
Semifinal-Team: Wolfgang Nägele (D) / Hannah König (A) / Isabelle Bischof (CH)

Operá de Lyon prize, awarded by the director, Serge Dorny
Serge Dorny
Team B: Barbora Horáková Joly (CZ) / Cornelia Schmidt (D) 

Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe prize, awarded by the director, Peter Spuhler
Team C: Valentin Schwarz (A) / Andrea Cozzi (I)

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