Tabea Debus Receives CAG’s Innovation Award

Concert Artists Guild has a long history of supporting innovative artists and is excited to continue this tradition with the Richard S. Weinert Award for Innovation in Classical Music. Open to CAG roster artists and alumni, this $5,000 award is given annually to an artist or ensemble with an outstanding proposal for a distinctive project. CAG is indebted to President Emeritus Richard S. Weinert for his service to CAG since 2000 and is proud to offer this award in honor of him.

The 2020 award will go to Tabea Debus (recorder), a 2019 CAG Competition laureate, to launch the creation of an interactive animated-story-game for children. The animated game will be used in live and online educational settings to introduce contemporary classical works through reflexive storytelling, encouraging interaction between new music, narrative decision-making, and music education.

Washington Performing Arts’ Director of Programming Samantha Pollack (selection panel member) said, “As a presenter with robust education programs in DC Public Schools, we often work with classrooms with students without much classical music exposure. Tabea’s proposed project of combining classical recorder music with bespoke animation is compelling, innovative, and just plain FUN. It will reach an often neglected group of young people, while still appropriate for audiences of all ages.”

In the words of Tanya Bannister, president of Concert Artists Guild, “CAG is committed to mentoring musicians who have a passion for education, and this project stood out as a fun, versatile, and innovative way to interact with the next generation. We are beyond excited to help Tabea bring this new project to life!”

One of the most exciting young musicians in the early music world, Tabea Debus is constantly exploring the horizons of music for recorder and has performed widely across Europe, Asia, and the USA. As a soloist, Tabea has appeared with La Serenissima, the English Chamber Orchestra at Cadogan Hall, and WDR Rundfunkchor at the Funkhaus in Cologne. Previous highlights include recitals at the Wigmore Hall, the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, and at the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival. Awards include the WEMAG Soloists Prize at the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, first prize at The Society of Recorder Players/Moeck International Solo Recorder Competition in London, as well as at the Johann Heinrich Schmelzer and Hülsta Woodwinds International Competitions. Tabea was also a City Music Foundation Artist, St John’s Smith Square Young Artist, and Handel House Talent. She was selected by Young Classical Artists Trust, and subsequently joined the Concert Artists Guild roster in 2019.

Concert Artists Guild empowers musicians and launches careers that are sustainable, unique, and relevant. Through mentorship and performance opportunities, we identify and develop young artists who will make an impact in the world through music. Since 1951, CAG has helped more than 500 young musicians launch careers. Winners of CAG’s annual competition receive comprehensive management support, New York performances, concert bookings and professional career development and coaching.


For further information, please contact Timothy Mar
(212) 333-5200 ext. 1007 or