The Hofplein Youth Theater in Rotterdam today won the first ELJA Foundation Prize for 2023. The new Arts and Culture Prize was presented this afternoon at the Delamar Theater in Amsterdam.
The ELJA Foundation Prize is dedicated to leading cultural institutions and individuals in the field of music, dance and visual arts for children and young people.
The Youth Theater in Rotterdam wins this award with 75 thousand euros. The other nominees were Aslan Music Center from Amsterdam and Hivovois from Rotterdam. They each won €12,500.
Hofplein Youth Theater has been around since 1985 and presents various school programs and performances in its own theater in central Rotterdam. The theater attracts 70,000 visitors every year.
The jury, which includes Eurovision Song Contest jury member Cornald Maas, describes the Hofplein Youth Theater in the jury report as “an empowering machine where participants discover something they will carry with them throughout their lives and builds self-confidence.”
The ELJA Foundation Charitable Fund was founded in 2021 by Els Blokker-Verwer. She is the widow of Jaap Blocker, who was the owner of a chain of stores with the same name. The Business Award is given every two years.
According to Blocker Verwer, the three candidates excel in their own way in developing the talents of children and youth. “Each one of them is a shining role model for the community as a whole,” she says. “I view this award as recognition of their dedication over many years.”
“Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Freelance organizer. Avid analyst. Friendly troublemaker. Bacon junkie.”