The European Opera-directing Prize (EOP) is an international competition for young opera directors. The aim is to offer talented directors help in launching their careers. The EOP is announced every two years. The first competition was announced in 2001.
The EOP - European Opera-directing Prize is an effective and sustainable collaboration between Opera Europa and Camerata Nuova e.V., a circle of opera lovers from business and society. The EOP was initiated in 2000 to find a new way to select and promote young directorial talent. Directors and General Managers, including Achim Thorwald, then director of the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden, Dr. Gerard Mortier, then director of the Salzburg Festival, and Klaus Zehelein, then director of the Staatsoper, Staatstheater Stuttgart, have contributed to the success of this project. Also the representatives from business and politics.
The Competition is open to the public and international. The competition is aimed at talented directors. The competition is open to directors and teams of directors who can provide evidence of appropriate training or artistic experience and who have not yet staged an independent production on a major stage. Participants must not be older than 35. This age limit applies to each team member. Participation in the competition is free of charge.
For each competition, an Opera Europa opera house will set the task. A complete directorial concept of the named opera is required in English. The concept is expected to make clear the time and place of the interpretation and to describe the concrete events on stage through stage directions, use of media, stage and costume design in individual steps. The hosting opera house provides the stage data required for this. A cost framework is also specified. This makes it clear that the costs of a production will play an increasingly important role.
In an appendix to the directing concept, the applicants state what the unique production idea (UPI) of the concept is. This is to make it clear that the aim is not to relaunch successful directorial concepts, but to find new concepts that can arouse interest among experienced opera lovers, but also among only infrequent opera visitors. These specifications are to be formulated in a way that they are helpful for the marketing of the opera house issuing the invitation to tender.
The concepts will be judged by a 5-member jury of artistic directors, opera managers and directors. A new jury is appointed for each competition.
The EOP - European Opera-directing Prize is endowed with prize money totalling 42.500 €.
The prize money is provided by the Camerata Nuova.
1st prize: The performance guarantee for the winning concept
The prize is connected with the payment of 20.000 € to the tendering opera house, as a contribution to the team fee.
2nd prize to 4th prize: A work assignment at an Opera Europa member opera house each
The prize is connected with a payment of 7.500 € to the opera house awarding the commission in each case.