Dutch Music Award Announces 2023 Winner

By Francisco Salazar

Baritone Raoul Steffani has been announced the winner of the Dutch Music Award.

The prestigious prize is the highest accolade that the Performing Arts Fund, on behalf of the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science, can grant to a musician working in classical music.

In a statement, the committee said, “Raoul Steffani not only sings, but he speaks and communicates with his audience through music. Diction, intelligibility, a feeling for language, and above all a very individual and personal sound signature characterize his performances. He reaches out to his audience singing his lyrics and draws the audience to him in a very expressive and personal way.”

The award will be presented to Steffani by State Secretary Gunay Uslu (Culture and Media) on Friday, October 13, in Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ.

Steffani studied voice at the conservatories in Amsterdam and Vienna and made his international debut at the Opéra National de Lyon. He has performed at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Bozar Brussels, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, and Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam.

Previous winners of the Dutch Music Award include singers Jard van Nes (recipient in 1984) and Christianne Stotijn (2008), violinist Janine Jansen (2003), and most recently pianist Thomas Beijer (2022).