Award Winners

The award winners will be announced on 22nd of March 2018 at the Aalto Theatre Essen.

For the first time, the German Dance Award will be presented by the German Dance Association (Dachverband Tanz Deutschland), jointly supported by the city of Essen, the Ministry for Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, and by funds from the Federal Government. 
The German Dance Award will be endowed with the sum of €20,000 for the first time.


The GERMAN DANCE AWARD 2018 will be received by the dramaturge and dance networker, Nele Hertling.

Over many decades, Nele Hertling has made an impact on the development of contemporary dance in Germany. Since the 70s, she has drawn exceptional international choreographers to Germany, such as Merce Cunningham and Trisha Brown. As director of the Hebbel Theatre in Berlin (from 1988 to 2003), she established a strong network of European event organisers, presented the Flemish and French dance avant-garde, and founded the festival “Tanz im August“. As cultural-political networker and an expert for dance, she continually strengthened the position of independently produced dance. In doing so, she never restricted her efforts to a specific form of dance but directed her attention to the broad horizon of dance in all its diversity within the European cultural landscape.  

Dance Award for extraordinary Development in Dance

The ballet of Staatstheater Nürnberg will be honoured for an extraordinary development in dance.

Under the direction of Goyo Montero, the ballet of Staatstheater Nürnberg has developed into an ensemble of exceptional soloists and artistic personalities. With his exceptional choreographies, which are demanding for both the audience and dancers, he shapes the profile of the ensemble. Building on classical training, the company has also achieved excellence in contemporary dance techniques; an ensemble which captivates the public and is taking stages around the world by storm through its collaboration with world-class choreographers, such as Jiří Kylián, Mats Ek, William Forsythe and Hofesh Shechter.

Dance Award for extraordinary Artists

The jury is honouring the choreographer Meg Stuart and her company Damaged Goods as extraordinary artists. 

American choreographer Meg Stuart lives and works in Berlin and Brussels. In 1994, she founded her company Damaged Goods. Stuart strives to develop a new language for every piece, in collaboration with artists from different creative disciplines and navigates the tension between dance and theatre.  Her dance examines the position of the body in the world; it questions, deconstructs and disembodies the body. The performers of Damaged Goods’ productions confront us as explorers, driven by passion and longing, inward-looking and  exploring physical  and emotional states or the memories of them.

An impressive list of previous award winners and laudators can be found here.