• Nora Schmid
  • Iris Laufenberg
  • Peter de Caluwe
  • Benedikt von Peter
  • Serge Dorny
  • Katrin Lea Tag
  • Jossi Wieler
  • Per Boye Hansen
  • Peter Konwitschny
  • Aviel Cahn
  • Ole Wiggo Bang
  • Albrecht Thiemann
  • Martin Schüler
  • Valérie Chevalier
  • Peter Spuhler
  • Hein Mulders
  • Roland Geyer
  • Dietmar Schwarz
  • Michael Klügl
  • Peter Theiler


RING AWARD 17_Laufenberg, Weyringer, Schmid (c) Lupi Spuma

Intendant Heinz Weyringer with both chairs of the juries; Nora Schmid (Intendant Oper Graz, r.) and Iris Laufenberg (Intendant Schauspielhaus Graz, l.) (c) Lupi Spuma


RING AWARD Intendant Heinz Weyringer and his team had intensive talks with renowned international representatives of the musical theatre, and are now proud to be able to announce the following jury members.


The members of the RING AWARD Jury judge all three stages of the competition and decide on the ›Ring Award‹ and the Prize of the Province of Styria at the finals.

Nora Schmid, Intendant Opera Graz
Chair, RING AWARD Jury

Nora Schmid, born in Berne (Switzerland), studied musicology and business administration in her home city and in Rome. As a student she devoted much of her time and energy to classical singing and had her first stage experiences in various productions at Stadttheater Bern. In addition, she was an assistant to Professor Dr Anselm Gerhard at the Department of Musicology of the University of Berne. After her first experiences in the fields of orchestra management with basel sinfonietta and marketing at the Berlin Staatsoper Unter den Linden, she began working as music theatre dramaturg at Theater Biel Solothurn (Intendant Hans J. Ammann) in 2005. From 2007 Nora Schmid was opera and concert dramaturg at Theater an der Wien (Intendant Roland Geyer). With the season 2010/11 she became chief dramaturg at Semperoper Dresden, where in 2012 she additionally took over the agenda of the Personal Referent to Intendant Dr Ulrike Hessler. After Dr Hessler’s death in July 2012 she became member of the interim acting management of Semperoper Dresden. From the season 2015/16 Nora Schmid has been Intendant of Oper Graz.

In her new function in Graz Nora Schmid has also taken over the chair of the RING AWARD Jury of RING AWARD 17.

Peter de Caluwe, Directeur Général, Théâtre royal de la Monnaie/De Munt, Brussels

Peter de Caluwe (Belgian, born 1963) read literature and theatre at the universities of Ghent, Brussels, and Antwerp. He obtained his master’s degree with a thesis on mise-en-scène in opera. While still a student, Gérard Mortier invited him to the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, where subsequently he was dramaturge, coordinator of educational projects, international press manager, and public relations officer.

In 1989, Pierre Audi asked him to join the new opera management team at Netherlands’ Opera in Amsterdam. He started with the company as director of communications with the responsibility of developing a public image for the new artistic policy. From 1994, he switched to the position of casting director, later extended to director of artistic administration/Operndirektor of the company.

In 2005 Peter de Caluwe was appointed General Manager of La Monnaie|de Munt, the Belgian National Opera, based in Brussels. He started his tenure there in summer 2007. Peter de Caluwe holds several advisory and board functions in Belgium and abroad. In 2007 he was awarded the first Master Honoris Causa from the Brussels College for the Arts, St. Luc.

Serge Dorny, Directeur Général, Opéra de Lyon

Born in Belgium in 1962, Serge Dorny studied history of art, archaeology, musicology, press and communication at the University of Ghent, while simultaneously studying at the Music Conservatory. He worked for several years as music dramaturge under Gerard Mortier at the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, and subsequently moved to the Flanders Festival. In 1989 he became Artistic Director of the Festival.

In 1996, he took up the position of Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Since 2003, he has been General Director and Artistic Director of the Lyon National Opera House.

In 2008 he received an honorary doctorate from the Université du Quebec à Montréal (UQAM), Canada and in April 2012 he was awarded with the prestigious ‘Knight of the Legion of Honour’ (France). In 2013 he was awarded with the ‘Order of the Crown’ (Belgium).

In addition to these activities he participates as a jury member in several international music competitions: Bamberg and Helsinki (Conductors), Monte Carlo (Piano), Queen Elizabeth Competition in Brussels (Singing).

He is also a board member of the Orchestre Français des Jeunes, Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et danse de Lyon, the Queen Elizabeth Competition and CERN Cultural Commission for the Arts (CERN is the European organisation for nuclear research).

Since 2008 he lectures at the post-graduate Master’s program EMAA (Executive Master in Arts Administration) at the University of Zurich, preparing leaders for the arts industry.

Amongst his publications is L’opéra, l’avenir d’un passé (with Johan Thieleman, Brussels, 1990).

Roland Geyer, Intendant, Theater an der Wien

Roland Geyer was born in Vienna on 29 December 1952 and studied mathematical economics at the Technical University, sports science at the University, and cultural management at the University of Music in Vienna. In the late 1970s and early 1980s Geyer worked for five years as an IT analyst at a computer firm and as an IT instructor at the Economic Promotion Institute Vienna. 

In 1983 he founded the Amstetten Summer Festival, from 1987 to 1996 he led the Jeunesse Musicale, and subsequently became Director of Wiener KlangBogen and OsterKlang Festival. In 1998 he took over the position of Music Intendant of Vienna and became responsible for annually 70 concerts and musical theatre productions. From 2006 he has been Intendant of Theater an der Wien, since then newly established as an opera house. This institution gained a significant position in the musical landscape of the nation’s capital Vienna by its emphasis on Baroque and contemporary musical theatre, by its presentation of international co-productions, as well as by the integration of the Radio Symphony Orchestra Vienna and the Vienna Symphony Orchestra as opera orchestras. In 1995 Geyer was honoured by the French Ministry of Culture with the ‘Ordre des Arts et des Lettres’ in recognition of his service for French music in Vienna. In 2002 he received the Austrian Honorary Cross for Science and Art, and in 2009 the Silver Medal for Services to the Province of Vienna.  

In 2014, Josef Ostermayer, Austrian Minister of Culture, conferred the title of ‘Professor’ on Roland Geyer.

Peter Konwitschny, stage director

Peter Konwitschny  was born in Frankfurt am Main. Having completed his studies of opera direction in Berlin, he was assistant director at the Berliner Ensemble from 1971 to 1979. Since 1980 he has been staging productions in all German-speaking countries. Meanwhile his productions can also be seen in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Lisbon, Moscow, Oslo, and Japan. Of theatre-historical relevance is his innovative conceptual and structural approach to the scenic interpretation of Handel’s operas, which from 1984 established a new era of concentration on Handel at Halle. Equally, his interpretations of Parsifal and Tristan und Isolde (Munich), Tannhäuser (Dresden), Lohengrin and Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Hamburg), Götterdämmerung (Stuttgart), and Der fliegende Holländer (Moscow) introduced a new phase of involvement with the works of Richard Wagner. From 1998 he concentrated on work, with Ingo Metzmacher, at Hamburg State Opera, with eleven productions until 2005, for which Hamburg State Opera was elected “Opera House of the Year”. Important productions of recent years were, among others, Don Carlo and Moses und Aron (Hamburg), Elektra (Copenhagen), Don Giovanni, Così fan tutte and Das Land des Lächelns (Komische Oper Berlin), Al gran sole carico d’amore (Hanover), and Salome (Amsterdam). Peter Konwitschny was five times honoured as “Stage Director of the Year” by the professional journal “Opernwelt”, in 1993 he was awarded the Konrad Wolf Prize of the Berlin Academy of Arts, in 2005 – as the first stage director of operas – the Theatre Award Berlin, and in 2007 the Theatre Award of the International Theatre Institute. He is member of the Academies of Arts in Berlin, Leipzig, Hamburg, and Dresden. Since 2002 he has held an Honorary Professorship at the University of Music “Hanns Eisler” in Berlin, and from 2008 to 2011 he was Chief Stage Director of Opera Leipzig, where, among others, he produced Alceste and Iphigénie en Aulide. He started working for Opera Graz in 1991 (The Bartered Bride). Subsequent productions were, among others, Madama Butterfly, Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Aida, La Bohème, Macbeth, Falstaff (2001 selected by “Opernwelt” as “Production of the Year”), and most recently, in 2011, La traviata and Pique Dame. In 2009 he directed Shakespeare’s King Lear at the Schauspielhaus Graz, where his production of Goethe’s Faust had its opening night in December 2012. In the summer of 2013 directed Verdi’s Attila at the Vienna Theater an der Wien.

Dietmar Schwarz, Intendant, Deutsche Oper Berlin

Dietmar Schwarz was born at Biberach an der Riss in Germany. He took up literature and theatre studies in Munich and at the Paris Sorbonne. He held professional positions at Theater Freiburg, Bremer Theater, and Oper Frankfurt. In 1994 he returned to Bremer Theater under Intendant Klaus Perwoß as Leading Dramaturg for Musical Theatre. From 1998 he was Opera Director at Nationaltheater Mannheim and from 2006 to 2012 held the same position at Theater Basel. Under his direction, a critics poll conducted by the professional journal “Opernwelt” selected this house twice consecutively to become “Opera House of the Year” (2009 and 2010).

In the summer of 2012 Dietmar Schwarz became Intendant of Deutsche Oper Berlin, starting his activities there programmatically with Helmut Lachenmann’s “Das Mädchen mit den Schwefelhölzern” (“The Little Match Girl”), since it is a special concern of his to present contemporary musical theatre: next to works by Maruricio Kagel and Iannis Xenakis performed during the subsequent seasons, compositions have already been commissioned to Georg Friedrich Haas, Andrea Lorenzo Scartazzini, and Detlev Glanert.

Schwarz’s special focus is on the renewal of the classical repertory by stage directors like Christof Loy, Robert Carsen, Jan Boss, and Christian Spuck, as well as presenting French grand opéra. For the seasons 2015/16 and 2017/18, Deutsche Oper Berlin is planning new productions of the most important works by Giacomo Meyerbeer, and together with Chief Music Director Donald Runnicles, Dietmar Schwarz is preparing over several seasons presentations of works by Benjamin Britten.

A new presentation site, TISCHLEREI, opened in November 2012, offers a perfect venue for experiments with new forms of the musical theatre and for world premieres of childrens’operas as well as youth projects, which are Dietmar Schwarz’s particular concern.

He is a jury member of the RING AWARD, the International Competition for Stage Direction and Design in Graz. In addition, he is a member of the Think Tank for the Future of Theatres in Lucerne, organized by Theater Werk Luzern. Dietmar Schwarz was appointed to be a member of the German Academy for the Performing Arts.

Peter Spuhler, Generalintendant, Staatstheater Karlsruhe

Peter Spuhler  was born in Berlin in 1965. He studied stage direction and dramaturgy at Max-Reinhardt-Seminar in Vienna, and for his diploma production he received a diploma with honours as well as an award sponsored by the Austrian Ministry of Science. Following various commitments as guest and assistant stage director at a number of Viennese theatres he worked as dramaturge at the Schauspielhaus Wien in 1990/91.  From 1993, for three years, he took charge of the Children’s and Youth’s Theatre, and was also active there as stage director and dramaturge, at the Theater der Altmark/Landestheater Sachsen Anhalt-Nord at Stendal. Later he moved to Volkstheater Rostock, where he filled various leading positions, such as chief and executive dramaturge and Drama Director.  Subsequently Peter Spuhler was elected Intendant of Landestheater Württemberg-Hohenzollern at Tübingen/Reutlingen. When taking his leave there, he received the city’s Hölderlin Medal in recognition of his achievements. From the season 2005/06 Peter Spuhler was Intendant of Theater and Philharmonisches Orchester Heidelberg. His adventurous repertoire, jointly realized with Germany’s youngest Chief Musical Director, Cornelius Meister, Opera Director Bernd Feuchtner, and Drama Director Axel Preuß, received transregional attention and esteem. In 1996 Spuhler was co-founder of the Forum junge Dramaturgie within the Dramaturgische Gesellschaft, whose long-term board member and chairman since 2007 he has been. He is also member of the Intendantengruppe of Deutscher Bühnenverein, of that association’s Publishers and Broadcasting Board, as well as deputy member of the association’s Administrative Board, and of the Administrative Board of the German Stages’ Pension Institution. Time and again he works as a guest lecturer, e. g., at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich in conjunction with the Theatre Academy there, and the Universities of Mannheim and Heidelberg. Since July 2006, Peter Spuhler, who as part of his being Intendant at Heidelberg is also responsible for the festivals „Heidelberger Stückemarkt“, „Heidelberger Schlossfestspiele“, and „Winter in Schwetzingen“, has been Speaker of the Festivalgruppe der Metropolregion Rhein-Neckar, which is concerned with the profiling of the metropolitan region as a festival region. Furthermore, Theater Heidelberg has recently become a member of „Opera Europa“ und „European Theatre Convention (ETC)“, the two most important European theatre organizations. With the season 2011/12 he became Generalintendant of Staatstheater Karlsruhe.

Katrin Lea Tag, stage and costume designer

Born in Berlin, she studied stage design, painting and graphic art in Vienna at Akademie der bildenden Künste. Following her work as an assistant of Katrin Brack, she started cooperating regularly, among others, with Dimiter Gotscheff, Michael Thalheimer, Barrie Kosky, Hans Neuenfels and Christiane Pohle at Deutsches Theater Berlin, Thalia Theater Hamburg, Burgtheater Wien, Oper Frankfurt, Staatsoper Hannover, English National Opera in London, Komischen Oper Berlin, LA Opera, Ruhrtriennale 2005, and Akademietheater Wien.

Albrecht Thiemann, “Opernwelt

Born 1958 at Wetzlar, growing up at Wuppertal. 1967 to 1976 Wilhelm-Dörpfeld-Gymnasium (classical focus), in addition piano instruction, member of the Wuppertal Kurrende boys’ choir, singer in church choirs. 1972 to 1974 extramural studies of church music (C-exam), organist at various congregations. 1976 to 1977 studying philosophy, theology, sociology, and German literature at Freie Universität Berlin. Subsequently community service at a Bremen hospital (1977 to 1979). 1979 to 1981 assistance at a Jewish Human Rights Organisation in New York City as a volunteer of Action Reconciliation Service for Peace (ARSP), project coordinator in Washington, D. C. 1981 to 1988 enrolled for American, English, and German Studies, and philosophy at Freie Universität Berlin and State University of New York at Buffalo. 1989 to 1991 docent of Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD) at the University of Bath, England. 1991 to 1993 free-lance work as cultural journalist, translator, and interpreter in Berlin. 1993 to 2004 feuilletonist at “Märkische Allgemeine” (Potsdam) with main focus on music, media, and the visual arts. Since 2004 editor of “Opernwelt” (Berlin). Contributions to, among others, “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung”, “Die Welt”, “Stuttgarter Zeitung”, “Sächsische Zeitung”, “Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg”, “Westdeutscher Rundfunk”, “Deutschlandradio Kultur”, and “Deutschlandfunk”. Concert introductions, moderations, jury memberships. Co-initiator of the “Mortier Award” for the Musical Theatre.

Jossi Wieler, Intendant, Oper Stuttgart

Jossi Wieler, born at Kreuzlingen, Switzerland. Studied stage direction at the Theatre Department of the University of Tel Aviv. 1979 first directing at Habima Nationaltheater. 1980-82 Assistant Stage Director at Schauspielhaus Düsseldorf. Subsequently Drama Director at Heidelberg, Bonn, Stuttgart, Basle, Hamburg, Zurich, Berlin, Munich Kammerspiele, and repeatedly at the Salzburg Festival. In 1994 he was chosen Stage Director of the Year for his production of Elfriede Jelinek’s “Wolken.Heim”. His stage work was invited to numerous national and international festivals. In 1997 in Tokyo he staged “Herr Paul” and in 2005 “Yotsuya Ghost Story” with Japanese actors. In 2002 he received the Konrad Wolf Prize of the Berlin Akademie der Künste, in 2005 the Prize of German Critics, and in 2009 the Nestroy Award for his production of “Rechnitz (The Exterminating Angel)” by Elfriede Jelinek. This production, as well as “Amphitryon” by Heinrich von Kleist (1986, Schauspielhaus Bonn), “Alkestis” by Euripides (2002) and “Mittagswende” by Paul Claudel (2005, both Munich Kammerspiele) were invited to the Berlin Theatertreffen.

Since 1994 he has extensively collaborated with Sergio Morabito also in opera productions. Their 2001 production of “Ariadne auf Naxos” at the Salzburg Festival was chosen Performance of the Year, as was “Doktor Faust” (2005), “Alceste” (2006), and “La Sonnambula” (2012). Wieler and Morabito were chosen Team of Stage Directors of the Year in 2002 and received the German Theaterpreis DER FAUST in the category Best Opera Stage Direction in 2006 (“Doktor Faust”) and 2012 (“Die glückliche Hand/Osud”). Since 2011/12 Jossi Wieler has been Intendant of Oper Stuttgart.



The members of the Theatre Jury decide on the Prize of the City of Graz at the finals.

Iris Laufenberg, Intendantin of Schauspielhaus Graz 
Chair, Theatre Jury 

Iris Laufenberg, born in Cologne in 1966, studied Drama, Theatre and Media at the University of Gießen. Already as a student she made her first experiences as assistant for stage direction and dramaturgy, among others at Schauspielhaus Essen and Schauspielhaus Bonn. At Bonn she then worked from 1991 to 1997 as member of the artistic directorate and as drama dramaturg. These functions she also held at Bremer Theater from 1997. In 1996 she worked as curator and organizational director of the European Festival Biennale Bonn, whose artistic director she was from 2001 to 2002. From 2002 until 2011 Iris Laufenberg managed the Festival Theatertreffen of the Berlin Festival. Since 2012, as drama director of Konzert Theater Bern, she has been responsible for the overall content-related orientation of drama at the four-branched Stadttheater Bern. In addition to attending to the classical repertory, Iris Laufenberg has put an emphasis on new European drama and in this context was invited to the Mühlheimer Theatertage (2013 and 2014) as well as to the Heidelberger Stückemarkt and the Berlin Autorentheatertage (both in 2013).

From the season 2015/2016 Iris Laufenberg has been Intendant at Schaupielhaus Graz. In this function she has also taken over the chair of the Directors’ Jury of RING AWARD 17. 

Ole Wiggo Bang, Intendant, Wermland Opera, Karlstad, Schweden

Ole Wiggo Bang started his professional career as a conductor in Norway in 1975. In the 1970s and ’80s he conducted most of the Norwegian and Swedish orchestras and was chief conductor at Göteborg Opera (Stora Teatern) until 1982, when he was appointed Intendant of Wermland Opera at the early age of thirty. Concentrating his activities on Karlstad, he has developed Wermland Opera from a very small music theatre to become one of the most important opera houses in Scandinavia. His achievements comprise special opera projects such as the complete RING performed within a week, or the presentation of unknown musicals in Sweden. Apart from his activities in Sweden, during the mid-1990s he was also Artistic Director of The International Festival in Bergen.

Aviel Cahn, Intendant, Opera Vlaanderen, Antwerp & Ghent, Belgium

Aviel Cahn studied piano, singing, and law at the University of Zurich. Already as a student he managed his own artists’ agency, led the artistic office of Zurich Chamber Orchestra under Howard Griffiths, and worked at the administration of the Nureyev Foundation. In 2000 and 2001 he and the conductor Muhai Tang initiated the first regular concert season following the Western model for the China National Symphony Orchestra in Beijing. From 2001 to 2004 Cahn was Director of Artistic Planning at the Finnish National Opera in Helsinki. His large-scale production of Rossini’s opera IL VIAGGIO A REIMS, for which he was able to engage Dario Fo, Nobel Prize winner for literature, as director and designer, was highly acclaimed throughout Europe. Subsequently, Cahn became Opera Director of Stadttheater Berne. When taking over this position in 2004 he was, at the age of thirty, the youngest opera director. In 2006, Aviel Cahn established the Concours Ernst Haefliger, the first International Competition for Young Opera Singers in Switzerland. He remained in office as Artistic Director of the competition until 2009 when Dominique Mentha followed in his steps. During the season 2007/2008 he and Chief Conductor Muhai Tang were joint Directors of the Zurich Chamber Orchestra. Since 2009 he has been Intendant of Opera Vlaanderen at Antwerp/Ghent. He engaged Maestro Dmitri Jurowski to join him as Chief Conductor in 2011. He persuaded such influential stage directors as Michael Thalheimer, Peter Konwitschny, Calixto Bieito, or Christoph Waltz to work in Belgium for the first time and turned his opera house into one of the most important institutions for innovative musical theatre in Belgium today.

Valérie Chevalier, General Intendant, Opera and Orchestra Montpellier Languedoc-Roussillon (OONMLR)

From her early youth Valérie Chevalier has been fascinated by the theatre and by opera in particular; after winning her first prize in singing at the Rouen Conservatory she became a member of École d’Art Lyrique de l’Opéra de Paris, completing her studies there with a diploma. For ten years she sang on opera stages in France and the rest of Europe and then decided to complete her musical education with renowned teachers at the Julliard School in New York, where she spent several years.

Subsequently she turned to cultural management with the aim of creating productions that attract audiences, while at the same time emphasizing the importance of voices, the direction of orchestras, and innovative stagings. Valérie Chevalier continued her studies in the Unites States and took the degree of Master of Cultural Management – now being both a manager and a stage director.

In 2000 she founded the artists’ agency Standing Ovation, an organisation catering for emerging and established singers, conductors and chamber music ensembles.

In 2004 she became the artistic and administrative director of Lorrain National Opera, with a wide range of internal responsibilities. Her annual programmes, casts and co-operations are successful both in France and abroad and have essentially strengthened the reputation of Lorrain National Opera.

Additionally, she became educational director for students of singing and graduates at the Educational Centre for Young Stage Artists, founded in 2008. On account of her growing international reputation she increasingly appears on the radio and has become a frequently sought-after jury member at numerous international competitions.

Following a public selection from 50 contestants she was unanimously chosen as General Intendant of Opera and Orchestra Montpellier Languedoc-Roussillon. With great ambition and equal enthusiasm she puts her experiences as administrative and artistic director and her profound knowledge of music and opera in the service of OONMLR and confirms her willingness to enter into a dialogue with all members of staff for the benefit of the theatre.

Per Boye Hansen, Intendant, Den Norske Opera & Ballett, Oslo

Per Boye Hansen (born 1957) has been Artistic Director of the Norwegian National Opera since April 2012. His contract expires in August 2017.

He studied Theatre Science at the University of Oslo and Music-theatre directing at the Music Academy in Essen (Folkwanghochschule) where he graduated in 1982.

From 1983 to 1992 he was the Leader and Artistic Director of Oslo Summer opera, where he directed operas such as Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Così fan tutte, La Clemenza di Tito and Ariadne auf Naxos. He was engaged as Assistant Stage Director at the Cologne Opera House from 1984 to 1988 and was several times Assistant Stage Director at the Salzburg Festival. In 1990 he founded Oslo Arts Management, where he was owner and Managing Director until 2000.

In 2001 he worked as Casting Director and Opera Administrator at Komische Oper Berlin. In this period he built up a house ensemble of soloists and worked with stage directors such as Barrie Kosky, Calixto Bieito, Richard Jones, David Alden, Daniel Slater, Hans Neuenfels, Willy Decker, Sebastian Baumgarten, and Peter Konwitschny.

From 2005 till 2012 he was Managing and Artistic Director of Bergen International Festival.

From 2005 till 2008 he continued as Casting Advisor for Komische Oper Berlin, and from 2008 to 2010 he was Artistic Adviser to Andreas Homoki in his artistic planning for the Zurich Opera.

Since 2011 he has been Head of the Jury for the Ibsen International Award, appointed by the Norwegian Ministry of Culture. He is member of the Artistic Advisory Board of Ultima Festival and Kirsten Flagstad Festival in Hamar, Board Member of the Queen Sonja International Music Competition and Board Member of Dacapo Records/EditionS in Copenhagen, supported by the Danish Art Foundation. He was a Jury Member of the ARD Music Competition, Opera Award 2015 and the BBC Singer of the World 2013.

Veronica Kaup-Hasler, Intendantin, steirischer herbst

Curator, dramaturg & cultural manager. Born in Dresden, childhood in Vienna, studied Theatre Studies and German Studies the University of Vienna. After working as a dramaturg at Theater Basel from 1993 to 1995, she was festival dramaturg at Wiener Festwochen from 1995 to 2001 and artistic assistant to Director of Acting Luc Bondy as of 1998. In addition to these activities, she was also a teacher in Erich Wonder’s master class at the Academy of Visual Arts from 1998 to 2001. Her main activities included conceiving and carrying out the “Directing Competition” of Wiener Festwochen, developing projects such as Christoph Schlingensief’s container action, and researching on international theatre.

From 2001 to 2004 she managed the Theaterformen festival that takes place every two years in Hanover and Braunschweig. Under her management, this festival of advanced, contemporary theatre and performance made a name for itself as a venue for crossing genre boundaries to other arts.

At the end of 2004 she was appointed Festival Director of the contemporary art festival steirischer herbst in Graz, that she has been managing since 2006. The focus of her work is on premièring works of performance, choreography, music, commissioned works of visual art and architecture, and initiating theory formats (e.g. “Truth is Concrete” 2012 with Florian Malzacher, Kira Kirsch and many others).

Veronica Kaup-Hasler has been a member of the Board of the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna since 2008 and, as of 2017, is a lecturer on the “Curating Dramatic Arts” course at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich.

She is also a judge in a number of international juries and foundations and (co)editor of various book publications and numerous exhibition catalogues.

Michael Klügl, Intendant, Staatsoper Hannover

Born at Offenbach am Main in 1954, Michael Klügl studied piano, composition and violoncello at Hochsches Konservatorium at Frankfurt am Main, and later musicology, philosophy, German studies and history at Marburg. Alongside he worked as music and theatre critic for ‘Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’. In 1985 he changed over to the theatre, working as Dramaturge and Assistant Stage Director at Oper Frankfurt with Directors Gielen and Zehelein. In the same year Intendant Friedrich Schirmer hired him as Musical Director of Landesbühne Esslingen; from 1986 Michael Klügl was engaged as Dramaturge at Theater Oberhausen, Theater Bremen, and Staatsoper Hamburg. In 1994 he became Deputy Opera Director at Nationaltheater Mannheim, and in 1998 Intendant at Landestheater Linz, where for eight years he managed its four branches of theatrical activity. Since the season 2006-2007 Michael Klügl has been Opera Intendant and Executive Director of Niedersächsisches Staatstheater Hannover.

Michael Klügl lectured at Musikhochschule Bremen and Hamburg, published contributions in professional journals, and wrote the libretto for Giorgio Battistelli’s opera DIE ENTDECKUNG DER LANGSAMKEIT (THE DISCOVERY OF SLOWNESS).

Benedikt von Peter, Intendant, Luzerner Theater

Benedikt von Peter was born in Cologne in 1977 and studied Musicology, German, Law and Singing in Bonn. He then was assistant director at various houses and founded a free Theatre Collective. After several years of working fringe free-lance he staged productions at theatres and opera houses in Germany and Switzerland (among others, Theater Basel, Oper Frankfurt, Staatstheater Hannover, Komische and Deutsche Oper Berlin), and since 2012 he has been director of the musical theatre at Theater Bremen. He was awarded, among others, the Götz Friedrich Prize, the theater award DER FAUST, and in 2014 the Kurt Hübner Prize for the musical theatre programme and his own productions at Theater Bremen. From the season 2016/17, von Peter will be Intendant of Luzerner Theater.

Martin Schüler, Intendant, Staatstheater Cottbus

Martin Schüler studied opera stage direction at the University of Music “Hanns Eisler” in Berlin. Since 1991 he has been Opera Director at Staatstheater Cottbus. The transregional reputation of the opera ensemble under his direction is based, among others, on semi-scenic productions of works such as DIE RHEINNIXEN (THE RHINE MERMAIDS) by Jacques Offenbach or Verdi’s IL TROVATORE. Following this special stage practice, Martin Schüler was able to start working on a separate Cottbus RING with RHEINGOLD in 2003, completing the cycle in 2013 for the Wagner centennial. With the season 2003/2004 Schüler became intendant of Staatstheater Cottbus and took the chair at the board of Brandenburgischen Kulturstiftung Cottbus for eight years (2004-2012).
Under his direction the Staatstheater Cottbus developed the idea of combining the qualities of all branches of the house and introduce multi-branch projects incorporating opera, drama, and orchestra.
In addition, Martin Schüler occasionally teaches at Zurich or Rostock and served as mentor at the Kammeroper Schloss Rheinsberg (2000, 2010). He was guest stage director at Mannheim, producing Wagner’s RING DES NIBELUNGEN during 1999/2000, as well as at Graz, Bremen, Saarbrücken, and Bratislava. In June 2014 he staged FIDELIO at the central court of the memorial site Zuchthaus Cottbus. This open-air event started the Festival for Freedom and Democracy at the formerly most notorious political jail in the German Democratic Republic.
Martin Schüler’s style of directing has so far characterized more than 100 productions. In March 2001 he received the Advancement Award for Music of the Berlin Kunstpreis.

Peter Theiler, Intendant, Staatstheater Nürnberg

Born in Basle in 1956, Peter Theiler already worked as assistant director alongside his academic studies (history and German literature), among others at Grand Théâtre de Genève and Oper Frankfurt. During the season of 1987/1988 he found his first engagement as stage director at Musiktheater im Revier, Gelsenkirchen, and a year later he became Artistic Manager and Stage Director at Opéra de Nice. 

From 1991 to 1995 Peter Theiler was Director of ‘Perspectives’, the only French theatre festival outside France, situated at Saarbrücken. At the same time he took over a lectureship of theatrical instruction at the Opernstudio of Musikakademie Basel. For two seasons – from 1994 to 1996 – Theiler was Chief Theatrical Director and Stage Designer at Oper am Nationaltheater Mannheim before he moved back to his native Switzerland to become Director of ensemble Theâtre des Régions Biel/Bienne-Solothurn in the season 1996/1997. 2001/2002 he became General Intendant of Musiktheater im Revier at Gelsenkirchen, and in 2008 gained the position of Staatsintendant of Staatstheater Nürnberg. To honour his commitment for disseminating French theatre in Germany he was nominated ‘Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres’ by the French Minister of Cultural Affairs. In July 2012 Peter Theiler was appointed Honorary Consul of Switzerland.

From the season of 2018-2019, Peter Theiler will be leading the Sächsische Staatoper Desden as General Intendant.



The Honorary Presidium consists of persons who have rendered extraordinary services to the RING AWARD and to the musical theatre in general.