At the awards ceremony in Luxembourg on 7 June, Batiashvili was recognised for her services to culture in Europe, while the Stretton Society received the European Initiative Prize for its work loaning valuable instruments to young musicians


Violinist Lisa Batiashvili 

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The European Culture Prize Gala was held on 7 June 2024 at the Luxembourg Philharmonic, where eleven awards were given in recognition of artistic personalities, initiatives to promote young musicians and social commitment.

Among the winners was Georgian violinist Lisa Batiashvili, who received the award in recognition of her service to culture in Europe. Currently artist-in-residence with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, she started the Lisa Batiashvili Foundation in 2021 to support highly talented young people from her home country. 

’[I’m] honoured to receive this special award,’ Batiashvili wrote on social media. ’European spirit was truly present in the Luxembourg Philharmonic last night.

’In my speech I talked about the young generation of my country who is fighting peacefully and determined for the European future of Georgia.’


Cellist Benjamin Kruithof

The Stretton Society also received the European Initiative Prize for its work supporting exceptional musicians, notably giving young artists access to rare and valuable stringed instruments.

Co-founder of the organisation Maximilian von Schierstädt accepted the award, followed by a performance by Stretton Society beneficiary, Benjamin Kruithof. The 2022 winner of the George Ensecu International Competition performed on an 18th-century Guadagnini cello alongside the Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra.

Other winners of the evening included soprano Fatma Said and tenor Rolando Villazón, conductor Alondra de la Parra, as well as singer Ronan Keating,  television presenter Frank Elstner, actress Ornella Muti, and former Luxembourg prime minister and EU commission president Jean-Claude Juncker.

Next year’s awards gala will be held on 9 May 2025 in Chemnitz, which has been named the European Captial of Culture 2025.

Photos: European Culture Prize/Michael Schmidt

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