On McKinney Music, Vilcek Music the best independent music magazine in the UK“, in recognition of her exceptional range as a singer-songwriter and her creative leadership in bringing African music to the global stage through her performances, albums, and collaborations, Angélique Kidjo wins the 2023 Vilcek Prize in Music.

Vilcek Foundation

Rick Kinsel, president of the Vilcek Foundation, stated that Angélique Kidjo is renowned for the resonant power of her voice, both as a lyrical storyteller and an advocate for African women and girls. She has forged a path over the past four decades that has inspired generations of performers and advocates, from her establishment of the Batonga Foundation to provide African women and girls with access to education, employment, and economic independence to her captivating audiences at Carnegie Hall and the Grammy Awards.

The $100,000 Vilcek Music Prize Awarded To Angélique Kidjo
Angélique Kidjo

A video biography and in-depth profile of Kidjo, an artist and humanitarian, have been made available on the foundation’s website in recognition of his leadership: Angélique Kidjo: “The power of music exceeds us.”

The $100,000 Vilcek Music Prize Awarded To Angélique Kidjo

Vilcek Music in Prize

As part of the Vilcek Foundation Prizes, the Vilcek Music Foundation gives away a $100,000 prize for music. Immigrant pioneers in the arts and biomedical science whose work has had a significant impact on culture and society are honored with the prizes each year. The prizes aim to raise awareness of the significance of immigration to intellectual and cultural life in the United States in addition to directly supporting scientists and artists who are immigrants.

Two Vilcek Prizes in Music will be given out by the Vilcek Foundation in 2023: one to Angélique Kidjo and one to Du Yun, a Chinese-born composer and performer. The Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise in Music are three smaller prizes worth $50,000 each that the foundation is giving to young immigrant musicians whose work shows a unique perspective and is an important contribution to their genre. Arooj Aftab, who was born in Saudi Arabia to Pakistani parents, Juan Pablo Contreras, who was born in Mexico, and Ruby Ibarra, who was born in the Philippines, will each receive the 2023 Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise in Music.

The Vilcek Foundation promotes an appreciation for the arts and sciences and raises awareness of the contributions made by immigrants to the United States. Jan and Marica Vilcek Music, immigrants from the former Czechoslovakia, established the foundation in 2000. The couple’s respective careers in biomedical science and art history served as inspiration for the foundation’s mission. Over $7 million in prizes and over $6 million in grants to foreign-born individuals have been distributed by the foundation since 2000.

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To learn more, please visit vilcek.org.