The Award

Jazz is an essential part of musical culture. During its more than one hundred years of development, jazz has continually produced new styles and has become a globally dominant form of popular music, which it continues to play a decisive role in shaping. Jazz musicians are characterised not only by a high degree of virtuosity in mastering their instruments but also by a special talent for improvisation. In Germany, an independent jazz culture of international significance has developed since the 1960s with prominent artists such as Albert Mangelsdorff, Klaus Doldinger and Till Brönner.


The promotion of young jazz talents in the German-speaking countries is a special concern of the initiators of the YOUNG JAZZ TALENT AWARD. That is why the »Ringbeck Foundation« has relaunched the award in 2022: Young, not yet established jazz musicians between the ages of 16 and 23 are to be given special support in their career development; in 2022, the focus will be on the drums as a particularly important, style-defining instrument in jazz and pop music.

The concept of the YOUNG JAZZ TALENT AWARD was jointly developed by Jürgen Ringbeck, chairman of the »Ringbeck Foundation«, and Peter Weiss, the spiritus rector of the Düsseldorf jazz scene and musical director of the »Jazz Schmiede . Düsseldorf«. Special thanks for the support in the realisation go to the renowned professors for jazz drums Prof. Thomas Alkier, »Folkwang Universität der Künste . Essen«, Prof. Jonas Burgwinkel, »Hochschule für Musik und Tanz . Cologne«, the members of the jury, as well as the »Jazz Schmiede Düsseldorf« and the other participating German jazz clubs.

The Concept

The YOUNG JAZZ TALENT AWARD is endowed with 5,000.00 €. In 2022, young jazz drummers who are not yet established will be promoted. The award winner is expected to have a special mastery of his/her instrument, musical interplay, playful creativity and improvisational talent. A concert tour with his/her own band in four renowned German jazz clubs will be organised for him/her in the autumn. The prize money will be used for the realisation of this tour.


The procedure of the competition in 2022: In order to simplify the selection process, but at the same time ensure a high quality of candidates, the pre-selection was initially limited to jazz drummers studying in North Rhine-Westphalia; Prof. Thomas Alkier, "Folkwang University of the Arts . Essen" and Prof. Jonas Burgwinkel, "Hochschule für Musik und Tanz . Cologne", as renowned trainers in the region, suggested two suitable candidates each, who were then nominated for the competition after they had fulfilled all the necessary requirements.