Noorderzon receives European award

Posted at: 28 Sep 2015

Noorderzon‘s international leading role rewarded in Paris

On Sunday 27 September, the Noorderzon Performing Arts Festival Groningen was the proud recipient of an EFFE award for excellence in Paris. This year, for the first time ever, the EFFE awards went to individual festivals with leading roles in Europe related to artistic value, innovation, internationalisation, political value and sustainability. The ceremony took place in the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris, as part of the prestigious Festival d’Automne. On behalf of Noorderzon, artistic director Mark Yeoman accepted the award, with Noorderzon – as one of the award-winning festivals – receiving praise for its exceptional quality.

In the running for the awards were 760 vastly different festivals from 31 countries. From these, 12 were selected, including Noorderzon. These are the winners:

  • Ars Electronica (Linz, Austria)
  • Festival d’Aix-en-Provence (Aix-en-Provence, France)
  • BIG BANG (Antwerp, Belgium; festival takes place in 11 cities across Europe)
  • Malta Festival Poznań (Poznań, Poland)
  • Midnight Sun Film Festival (Sodankylä, Finland)
  • Manifesta (Amsterdam, Netherlands; location of festival changes with each edition)
  • NEXT (Lille, France/Kortrijk, Belgium (Flanders)/Tournai, Belgium (Wallonia))
  • Noorderzon Performing Arts Festival (Groningen, Netherlands)
  • Perforations Festival (Zagreb/Rijeka/Dubrovnik, Croatia)
  • Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space (Prague, Czech Republic)
  • Santarcangelo Festival Internazionale del teatro in Piazza (Santarcangelo di Romagna, Italy)
  • SICK! (Brighton/Manchester, United Kingdom)


The EFFE jury includes a number of important experts from the field and is chaired by Vincent Baudriller, director of the Théatre Vidy in Lausanne (Switzerland) and previously artistic director of the Festival d’Avignon (France).

EFFE (Europe for Festivals and Festivals for Europe) is a platform founded earlier this year by the European Festivals Association (1952) intended to pay more attention to the profound importance of festivals for European society. Hundreds of festivals have associated themselves with this platform in the past year, which intends to play a guiding role for festivals in Europe.

More information can be found at

Awards galore in 2015

This year, Noorderzon held its 25th edition. In this wonderful anniversary year Noorderzon was surprised by awards galore. In June the festival was proud to receive the prestigious Groningen Culture Award (Wessel Gansfortprijs), a biennial award for a person or organisation making exceptional contributions to culture in the province of Groningen. Then, on the opening night of the festival (20 August), Mayor Peter den Oudsten awarded the honorary medallion of the city of Groningen to Noorderzon. With this medallion, the Mayor and Municipal Executive honoured not only the directors Femke Eerland and Mark Yeoman, but also the board, staff and the hundreds of festival volunteers. ‘Noorderzon has grown from a local branch into a mighty tree, a national and international tree, rooted deeply in Groningen society.’ And now Noorderzon can also add a European award for excellence to this illustrious string of prizes.