Board of Directors

Functions of the Board of Directors

In addition to managing and developing the Foundation's assets, which consist primarily of the properties granted to the foundation by Mrs. Léonie Sonning when the foundation was established, the Board of Directors is responsible for awarding the yearly Music Prize and a number of Talent Prizes.

The Music Prize is an honorary award granted to an internationally recognised composer, musician, conductor or singer. The Foundation does not accept applications for the Music Prize, and comprehensive research work is being done to find the right Laureates. The Board of Directors cooperates with concert organisers and other institutions in the music world to hold the yearly Prize Concert and several other events and concerts in connection with the Prize Concert.

Applications are neither accepted for the Talent Prizes awarded for the purpose of continued artistic development of young composers, musicians, conductors or singers from the Nordic countries. It also requires comprehensive research work for the Board of Directors to identify the 10 recipients of the yearly Talent Prizes and to ensure that the grants are used in the best possible way to achieve the purposes mentioned. The Board of Directors is also responsible for producing special presentation material to promote the Talent Prize recipients in the media.

Via the website, press releases, press conferences, etc., the Board of Directors ensures that the Léonie Sonning Music Foundation’s activities are promoted both nationally and internationally.

Board members

The board members are appointed for four years - three of them are appointed by the largest music institutions in the country: the Royal Danish Academy of Music, the Royal Danish Theatre and Danmarks Radio. At the first board meeting, the members must elect a lawyer as the fourth member. The four board members elect an additional member; a music expert whose main occupation is not within the public music institutions. The board members may elect an additional member.

Esben Tange (b. 1962)

Esben TangeMember of the board since 2004, chosen by Danmarks Radio, since 2012 also the committee chairman. He has an MA in musicology and media science. From 1995 employed at Danmarks Radio, from 2007 as radio host and editor with responsibility for, among other things, concert presentation. In addition, Esben Tange is artistic leader of the Rued Langgaard Festival, lecturer and has written articles about, in particular, music around 1900.  

Torsten Hoffmeyer (b. 1956)

Bestyrelse 2has, in his capacity as lawyer, taken care of the secretariat of the Music Foundation since 1992. He holds an LLM degree from 1980 and is entitled to plead before the Supreme Court. He is also a partner in the Horten Law Firm. As a lawyer, he mainly functions as a consultant for privately owned, foundation owned and stock-exchange-quoted companies. He is a member of various other executive committees.

Bertel Krarup (b. 1947)

Bestyrelse 4has been a member of the board since 2008 – appointed by The Royal Danish Academy of Music. Vice Chairman of the Board since 2016. Music theorist and music historian, from 1980 senior lecturer at The Funen Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, from 1989 principal there, and from 2007 principal of The Royal Danish Academy of Music. Bertel Krarup has contributed to research publications and written articles about new and contemporary music for both music journals and specialist encyclopaedias. 

Michael Schønwandt (b. 1953)

Bestyrelse 5has been a member of the board since 1998, chosen by The Royal Opera. Michael Schønwandt qualified in London, from 1979 conductor of the orchestra at The Royal Opera and subsequently artistic leader of Collegium Musicum, chief conductor in Nice and and of The Danish National Symphony Orchestra. Later, chief conductor of the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, The Dutch Radio’s Chamber Philharmonic and in 2000-2011 Music Directorand chief conductor of The Royal Theatre.  Michael Schønwandt is conducting all over Europe and among other things conducted the recent version at the Royal Danish Opera of Wagner’s Ring Cycle - also to be found in a DVD-recording.

Katrine Ganer Skaug (b. 1971)

Katrine Ganer Skaug.jpgMember of the board since 2014 as the representative of the musicians' profession at large. Holds a master’s degree (cand.philol.) in musicology from the University of Oslo and has a background as a music journalist, also for Norwegian Radio (NRK P2). She has also been active as a musician and as a teacher of the history of music and aural training. She has cooperated on programme work for a number of festivals where the focus has been on new music, such as MAGMA 2002 Berlin, the International Church Music Festival in Kristiansand and Nordic Music Days. From 2003 to 2007, she was general secretary of the Council of Nordic Composers, which involved her in in-depth network activities between Nordic and international musical life. In 2008, she became director of the young orchestra Orkester Norden, a position she held until she was made artistic administrator and director of Esbjerg Ensemble in 2012.