APPLAUS: Venue Prize for Exceptional Live Music Programming

Music clubs shape and enrich our lives with their concerts and contribute to cultural diversity in Germany – whether they are in metropolises or in the countryside. To reward this exceptional live music programming, the German Federal Commissioner for Culture and the Media annually awards club operators and promoters the “APPLAUS – Award for Programming in Independent Venues” award. The ceremony takes place every autumn.

The application period for APPLAUS 2022 ended on May 25, 2022.

The main awards are divided into three prize categories with prizes of up to 50,000 euros. A total of 2.4 million euros is available for prize money.

  • Best live music programs category: up to 50,000 euros per award
  • Best live music venues category: up to 35,000 euros per award
  • Category Best Small Venues and Concert Series: up to 10,000 euros per award

In addition, special awards for awareness, innovation or sustainability: up to 5,000 euros per award.

Financial Support and More Recognition for Clubs

The APPLAUS award supports music clubs and encourages them to maintain and continue developing their high-quality and trendsetting programming.


  • Financial support for smaller and medium-sized clubs and promoters with high-quality and trendsetting live music programming.
  • Top-level funding to underline the importance of live music venues and regional organisers
  • Increase public awareness for the musical offerings and structural challenges for independent music clubs and event series.

Most Generous German Federal Award for Culture

Initiative Musik has been awarding the Venue Programming Prize since 2013 with the involvement of the Federal Jazz Conference and the LiveMusikKommission – Association of Music Venues in Germany. APPLAUS has meanwhile become a well-established federal award.
To date, more than 600 awards were given to music clubs and event organizers from all genres of popular music, including rock, hip-hop, electronic music, experimental pop music and jazz. More than 11 million euros have been made available in prize money, making APPLAUS the most generous German federal award for culture.

Icon conditions of participation
conditions of participation

Conditions of participation for the APPLAUS 2022 (In German only)

Icon FAQ 2022
FAQ 2022

Frequently asked questions for the APPLAUS 2022 (In German only)

Icon FAQ 2021
FAQ 2021

Frequently asked questions for the winners of APPLAUS 2021 (In German only)


Thomas Eckardt

Managing Director AG Jazzmeile Thüringen, LAG Jazz in Thüringen e.V.

Anke Helfrich

Musician and composer

Gregor Hotz

Managing Director Musikfonds e.V., chairman APPLAUS jury

Ulla Oster

musician/composer, curator

Daniela Philippi



Janina Dotterweich

project management APPLAUS

Tanja Linke

project management APPLAUS

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