Recipients of the Hans Christian Andersen Award 2018 are:

Professor, dr. phil. Klaus Müller-Wille, Switzerland
for his ground-braking studies on the material aesthetics of Hans Christian Andersen

Ms. Tran Thi Minh Tam, Vietnam
for successfully extending the reading of Hans Christian Andersen in Vietnam

Sebastian, Danmark
for his interpretations of Hans Christian Andersen for the Danish musical scene

Klaus Müller-Wille
For many years, Klaus Müller-Wille has been a tireless advocate of Hans Christian Andersen on the international academic scene. In his scholarly work, he has particularly emphasized Andersen’s modernity. His latest book has to be regarded as his crowning achievement not just because it demonstrates in great detail how Hans Christian Andersen anticipated the literary avant-gardes of much later periods, but because it reconstructs his work in a way we have never seen before.

While it is well-known that Andersen was obsessed with paper cuts and clippings, his interest in the materiality of literature – ranging all the way from writing instruments to the smell or design of books – has never before been analysed so profoundly and in connection with the writing itself. Over the course of the last decade, Klaus Müller-Wille has written one of the most intriguing and exciting studies on the author to date. Based on a vast range of sources and archival material from the Hans Christian Andersen Hus, it will undoubtedly stand as a work of reference for many years to come.

Ms. Tran Thi Minh Tam
In the native country of H.C. Andersen we do not completely understand, why his fairytales find so many readers in faraway countries. Recently we have understood from many sources that millions of school children in Vietnam knows our famous poet quite well, and this Award Committee became interested in getting to know why this could be so. The Danish Embassy in Hanoi could easily explain this to us: the reason being Tran Thi Minh Tam! Her work with H.C. Andersen has stretched over almost 20 years and has resulted in an impressive fairytale-edition published in 2003 with 88 fairytales at first and later 100 fairytales! In different editions these collections have since been published in 16 impressions and another impression is coming in 2018!

This impressive work means that schools all over Vietnam has been able to work with H.C. Andersen – and not just read his fairytales but also use them as an inspiration when working with visual arts, music and drama in school. The young people of Vietnam has thus acquired the fairytales as an entire world for their growing experience.

Just like Hans Christian Andersen we see that Sebastian also excites a wide audience from the very young to the more mature persons. It is the same audience that has been excited about the special interpretations made by Sebastian over the fairytales of Hans Christian Andersen. He started his relationship to the author in 1980 with the production of the musical “Nattergalen” at Rimfaxe Teater, which was later shown for more than four decades! In 1989 the two met again in the work ”Et Eventyr/Dyndkongens Datter” which is a two-hour long instrumental symphony, where Lis Andersen, Sissel Kyrkjebø and Sebastian all sang.  Another interpretation of Hans Christian Andersen came to light in 1996 where the audience Gladsaxe Teater saw the musical, Hans Christian Andersen. In 2012 Sebastian gave us the album ”I Danmark er jeg født”. The album is an indisputable masterpiece between two icons spanning more than two centuries. Sebastian has made a solid and long-lasting impression in the hearts of all Danes for many decades by giving an excellent and popular soundtrack to the fairytales of Hans Christian Andersen.

The Award Ceremony takes place on Tuesday, April 3rd at 15.30 at the Odense Theatre.

The Award will be motivated and presented by the Minister of Cultural Affairs, Mette Bock, the Mayor of Odense, Peter Rahbæk Juel and Creative Manager, Christian Have.

The presentation of the awards will be accompanied by ballet dancing, singing, stand-up, reading and violin music.

Tickets are available on at DKK 145,00 each.

Further information, please contact Susanne Wiese Kristensen, cell +45 22 48 68 59.