From April 12 till 18, Saint Petersburg, Russia will host to one of the biggest theater events in Europe: the 14th edition of Europe Theatre Prize and the 12th edition of Europe Prize New Theatrical Realities.
The Prize events will take place under the support and patronage of the Russian Government with its Ministry of Culture and the Government of the City of St. Petersburg.
The Europe Theatre Prize was established in 1986 as a pilot project of the European Commission, under the presidency of Jacques Delors and with Carlo Ripa di Meana as the first Culture Commissioner. Further support for its creation was provided at that time by Melina Mercouri, patroness of the 1st edition, and by Jack Lang, French Minister of Culture at the time and current President of the Prize. Since 2002, the Europe Theatre Prize has been recognized by the European Parliament and Council as a “European cultural interest organization,” for its specific activities and its overall role.
After nine editions in Taormina, the Europe Theatre Prize took to the road, giving even greater impetus to its international aspect. Thus the 10th edition was held in Turin (supported and hosted by the city of Turin in collaboration with the Teatro Stabile, and presented as part of the special cultural program for the Winter Olympics). Next, the 11th and 12th editions were held in Thassaloniki and the 13th edition in Wroclaw, Poland (as part of the celebration of the year declared “Grotowski Year” by UNESCO).
Continuing in this direction, the 2011 Europe Prize will once again be an important meeting place of international theatre.
The Europe Theatre Prize is awarded to individuals or theatrical institutions (theatres, companies) that have contributed to the realization of cultural events which have promoted understanding and the exchange of knowledge between peoples. The prize is awarded to the career and the winner is chosen for the whole of his artistic path among notable personalities of international theatre considered in all its different forms, articulations and expressions.
The Jury of the 14th edition of the Europe Theatre Prize awarded the prize of €60,000 to Peter Stein, icon of contemporary European theatre.
Furthermore, as far as the Europe Prize New Theatrical Realities is concerned, the Jury (assisted by the Council – made up of almost 300 experts on European theatre), decided to award the XII edition to six artists, taking account of their complete work and its characteristics of innovation and originality (listed here in alphabetical order):
Viliam Do?olomanský, candidate since 2008 (Slovakia/Czech Republic), Katie Mitchell, candidate since 1999 (United Kingdom), Andrey Moguchiy, candidate since 2008 (Russia), Kristian Smeds, candidate since 2001 (Finland), Teatro Meridional, candidate since 2007 (Portugal) and Vesturport Theatre, candidate since 2007 (Iceland).
This choice has been made in accordance with the Prize Regulations which indicate the EPNTR as “an opportunity for meeting and confrontation between the different modes of expression of new European theatre” and also with the hope in its subsequent editions to open a new phase of the EPNTR to a generation of emerging artists and groups that may be as yet little known at the international level. After its conscientious preliminary work to familiarize itself with the candidates for the Europe Prize New Theatrical Realities, the Jury also awarded geographical areas that had never before received such recognition. With this gesture, they opened a new phase for EPNRT, a breakthrough expressly encouraged by the previous Jury meeting.
The Europe Prize New Theatrical Realities was raised permanently from €20,000 to €30,000, as had been approved for the last edition. The sum shall be divided into equal parts.
The Jury also awarded a Special Prize (awarded to Melina Mercouri in the 1st edition and to Vaclav Havel in the 6th edition, among others) to the legendary Russian director Jurij Petrovic Ljubimov for his undisputed artistic stature and decisive role, along with the Taganka Theatre, in the delicate phase of perestroika, which marked the transition of the Soviet Union to the Russia of today.
The program of the 14th edition of Europe Theatre Prize will host conferences and meetings dedicated to the winners and there will be performances, as well as scenes or works in progress – staged in preview — of new creations.
Follow Daily News Egypt for full coverage of the Europe Theatre Prize from Saint Petersburg, Russia.