Award: Iffland-Ring goes to Jens Harzer

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Vienna (dpa) - The new carrier of the highly renowned Iffland-Ring is the German actor Jens Harzer. This was announced by Austria's Culture Minister Gernot Blümel (ÖVP) on Friday.

The Swiss actor Bruno Ganz, who died in February, determined the 47-year-old from Wiesbaden to be his successor as the "most worthy" actor in German-speaking countries.

Harzer is an actor who stands out for his multifaceted work, said Blümel. Harzer has been a permanent member of the ensemble at the Thalia Theater in Hamburg since 2009 and performed in Austria, among others, at the Salzburg Festival in 2018.

The award is traditionally only passed on to men. This fact was recently criticized by the trade journal "Theater heute". The price should finally be opened for women, the editors demanded. For actresses there is the (much less known) Alma-Seidler-Ring; It was founded in 1978 by the Austrian Federal Government as a female counterpart to the traditional Iffland-Ring.

Ganz, who succumbed to cancer in February, had once received the ring from Austrian actor Josef Meinrad (1913-1996). Ganz should have initially determined his almost peer-stage stage colleague Gert Voss as successor, who had already been traded as a candidate at Meinrad's death. Voss died in 2014.

The Iffland ring has a long tradition: According to tradition, it was given by Goethe to the actor, playwright and theater director August Wilhelm Iffland (1759-1814) and is to be passed on to the most important German-speaking actor. The iron ring carries a large, blue-violet semiprecious stone adorned with the artist's head, surrounded by twenty-eight small diamonds.

The circle of candidates included actors such as Martin Wuttke, Nicholas Ofczarek, Ulrich Matthes, Klaus Maria Brandauer, Lars Eidinger, Joachim Meyerhoff and Ulrich Tukur.

REF: https://www.zeit.de/news/2019-03/22/iffland-ring-geht-an-jens-harzer-190322-99-497791

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