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.
The members of the board are expected to have an overview of the international music scene as well as the local Danish and Nordic music scene in order to come up with relevant proposals for recipients of the main prize and the talent awards.
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 (born. 1962)
Member of the board since 2004, appointed by the Danish Broadcasting Corporation, most recently re-appointed for a period of four years with effect from 1 October 2020. Esben has also been chairman of the board since 2012.
Esben Tange holds an MA in musicology and media science. Music critic at the newspaper Berlingske Tidende 1994–1995. Broadcasting journalist and concert host at DR’s P2 radio channel from 1995. Editor from 2007-2021.
Co-founder of the Rued Langgaard Association in 2007 and Rued Langgaard Festival in Ribe in 2010. Artistic leader of the festival since 2011 and festival director from 2022. Esben is a speaker and author and writes articles about classical and modern music with a particular focus on the time around the year 1900. Esben Tange has also created a number of visual concert performances about the composer Rued Langgaard and related composers.
As Esben Tange has been a member of the board of the Foundation for more than 12 years, he is not an independent board member as defined in the recommendations for good foundation management.
Torsten Hoffmeyer (Born. 1956)
Torsten Hoffmeyer has been the legal member of the board since 1992 and has most recently been re-appointed for a period of four years with effect from 1 October 2020.
Other executive positions:
Chairman of the following boards: C. L. Davids Fond og Samling, Davista K/S, Davista Komplementarselskab A/S, Oluf Brønnum & Co A/S, Oluf Brønnums Fond, Oluf Brønnum & Co. Holding ApS, Ferd. og Ellen Hindsgauls Almennyttige Fond, CTKM 185 ApS and Davids Holding ApS.
Member of the following boards: Incentive Fonden.
As Torsten Hoffmeyer has been a member of the board of the Foundation for more than 12 years, he is not an independent board member as defined in the recommendations for good foundation management.
Michael Schønwandt (Born. 1953)
has been a member of the board since 1998, chosen by The Royal Danish Theatre.
Most recently he was re-appointed for a period of four years with effect from 1 October 2020.
Michael Schønwandt qualified in London and has been royal conductor at the Royal Theatre since 1979 and subsequently also artistic leader of Collegium Musicum, chief conductor in Nice and of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra. Later also principal conductor at the Berliner Sinfonie-Orchester, the Dutch Radio’s Chamber Philharmonic and from 2000–2011 principal conductor and music director at the Royal Theatre. Michael Schønwandt conducts all over Europe and, among other works, has recorded Wagner’s Ring Cycle on DVD.
Since 2015 Michael Schønwandt has been principal conductor at the Opéra Orchestra National in Montpellier, France.
Other executive positions:
Member of the following boards: H.A. Schönwandts og Hustrus Mindelegat, Redaktør Hans Voigts Mindelegat, Hanna Lunds Musiklegat, Kgl. Skuespillerinde Frk. Elisabeth Dons Mindelegat and Weyse-Fonden.
As Michael Schønwandt has been a member of the board of the Foundation for more than 12 years, he is not an independent board member as defined in the recommendations for good foundation management.
Katrine Ganer Skaug (Born. 1971)
Member of the board since 2014 as the representative of the musicians’ profession at large. Most recently re-appointed for a period of four years with effect from 1 October 2020, as from which time Katrine Ganer Skaug has also been vice chairman of the board.
Katrine Ganer Skaug holds a master in musicology from the University of Oslo with a background as a musician, lecturer and music journalist in i.a. Norwegian National Broadcasting (NRK P2), in addition to working as a musical dramaturg for experimental performing arts. She has been a co-creator in the program work for several festivals with a focus on new music, such as MAGMA 2002 Berlin, the International Church Festival in Kristiansand and Nordic Music Days. From 2003 – 2007, she was Secretary General of the Nordic Composers’ Council and thereby developed a dynamic network between Nordic and international music life.
Katrine Ganer Skaug’s leadership experience includes management of Orkester Norden (2007-2012), Esbjerg Ensemble (2012-2020), Copenhagen Phil and is currently CEO of Helsingborg Symphony Orchestra and Concert Hall.
Katrine Ganer Skaug is an independent member of the board as defined by the recommendations for good foundation management.
Uffe Savery (Born. 1966)
Uffe Savery is president of the Royal Danish Academy of Music and has been appointed for a period of four years by the music academy with effect from 1 October 2020.
Uffe Savery is a speaker and returning visiting lecturer at CBS Executive and CBS MPG (Master Public Governance).
In 1988 Uffe Savery established Safri Duo together with Morten Friis, and they are still active.
Uffe Savery graduated as percussionist from the Royal Danish Academy of Music with:
A diploma and music pedagogical examination in percussion, chamber music and ensemble direction; he also graduated from the soloist class and debuted with Safri Duo as soloists with the Danish National Symphony Orchestra.
Master class in protreptic and leadership education at the Copenhagen Coaching Center.
Diploma in arts and culture management at Scenekunstens Udviklingscenter/University College Sjælland (today: Professionshøjskolen Absalon)
Uffe Savery holds the following executive positions:
Chairman of the Danish Dance Theatre (appointed by the Minister of Culture)
Member of the following boards:
Betty og Valdemar Van Hauens Fond, Institutionen San Cataldo, Arne Meyers Legat, Det Kongelig Danske Musikkonservatoriums Fond for Sangere, Robert Russels Mindelegat, Tytte & Lillemor Faurschou’s Mindelegat, Fonden af 1989, Mary og John Hartwig’s Fond til fordel for israelske musikstuderende, Det Kongelige Danske Musikkonservatoriums Fond for strygere, Aennchen og Eigil Harbys Fond, Annemarie Mortensens Fond, Kontorchef Arthur Andersson og Hustru pianistinden Ellen Andersson’s legat til uddannelse af musikstuderende i klaverspil, Vera & Carl Johan Michaelsens Legat, Jenny Stougaards Mindelegat, Viggo Makwarth og Hustru Veronika Makwarth’s Musiklegat, Jens Bertel og Ruth Ekhauges Mindelegat, Det Kongelige Danske Musikkonservatoriums Fond for pianister, Det Kongelige Danske Musikkonservatoriums Almene Fond, Eigil Koch Pallesens Legat, Thyra Rosa Berthold Johansens Legat, Den Klassiske Slagtøjsfond Kirsten Berns Legat.
Company Director of SAVVY MUSIC ApS.
Uffe Savery is an independent member of the board as defined by the recommendations for good foundation management.