Rise and Shine – Rewarding Europe’s Brightest Stars

Here’s an update on just a few of the many award schemes organised by authors’ societies across Europe, one of the many types of activities devised to reward fresh, exceptional creators and nurture up-and-coming talent.

The Floodliners, a pop punk band from South East London, has fended off stiff competition to be crowned songwriting and composition winners of The Next Brit Thing – an award for the brightest, most original British music talent.

The Next Brit Thing songwriting and composition award was sponsored by PRS for Music – an authors’ society representing the rights of 85,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers in the UK – and backed by the UK music industry, the BRIT Awards and the government.

On their win, they said “All we want to do is play and write our own music – what more is there?! We also want to say a big thank you to the NBT and PRS for Music for giving us the stage to shine.”

They have won a day’s studio session with a top music producer at AIR Studios, the prestigious recording house of many of today’s household names including Coldplay, Muse, George Michael, Arctic Monkeys, Florence & the Machine, Patrick Wolf, Placebo and Pixie Lott.

PRS for Music is just one of many authors’ societies in Europe that encourage up-and-coming talent by reinvesting a proportion of the money it collects into prizes and awards for young people, year on year.

For example, Teosto – the authors’ society representing some 26, 000 Finnish authors – is gearing up to grant its whopping €40 000 annual prize for fresh and original works on April 12, the ninth year in a row it has run the scheme. Seven authors representing a range of genres – jazz, pop, classical and opera to name but a few – are in the running.

The competition has already been whittled down to the final seven, and the final jury will comprise author Juha Itkonen, composer and conductor Jaakko Kuusisto and singer-songwriter Christel Sundberg.

In Poland, Tomasz Gudzowaty – nine-time winner of the World Press Photo Awards – has just added the ZAiKS prize to his name. ZAiKS is the Poland-based authors’ society. The award ceremony took place at the prestigious Photographers Gallery in Warsaw on the inaugural night of Gudzowaty’s new exhibition – ‘Beyond the Body’.

Janusz Fogler, President of ZAiKS, commented ‘We wanted to show his latest works in Poland again so viewers could see how interesting and astonishing his art is.’

Come back soon to read more about what authors’ societies are up to where you are.