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A brand new tribute, a brand new show – The International Music Award

The International Music Awards is a prize for and by people who are passionate about music. Brought to life by Axel Springer Mediahouse and hosted by Rolling Stone Germany, the power of music will continue to shake things up and connect people across the world.

The IMA curation team will be composed of international artists, music experts and renowned journalists who place a high value on engagement, innovativeness, and courage (instead only of music genres or sales figures) when they begin their search for the winning candidates across seven categories. Additionally, fans will be able to vote for their favourite in the category Performance.

The categories – what they are about


Music can change the world, often in small ways, sometimes in big ways. In order for music to live up to its world changing potential it needs artists with courage and resolve. The Commitment category honors artists who make a difference with their music on the global stage.


In studios, musical laboratories, and backrooms around the world, future sounds and techniques are developed that will define the pop culture of tomorrow. The Future category elevates musicians, producers, and other pop artists who move the artform with their forward-looking ideas.


Whether a single song or an entire album: What made the biggest splash? Who created the most original Sound? Who made the most impactful recording? The most important tracks and albums will comprise the Sound category.


Music is more than sound alone. When visuals illustrate and further develop music, the end result can be a holistic artform. The Visuals category celebrates outstanding efforts in the realm of music videos, stage shows, cover art, or special effects.


Which newcomers of the year generate the most amount of interest and word of mouth? The IMA aims to be a venue to premier the best up-and-comers.


Eyes can hear too. Designers, stylists, and also artists themselves develop the looks of pop culture and lend image to sound. The Style category honors the most original or influential styles of those who make music stylistically iconic.


Heroes and pioneers, the sources of inspiration for the next generation of musicians. The Hero category celebrates the life’s work of exceptional artists who have left their mark on pop culture.


The winner of this category will be chosen by the fans. On tour and on stage, artists must prove themselves to the most influential judges of all – their fans. For the IMA’s People’s Choice award the best live shows will be considered.

The IMA Panel and the IMA Board – how they work 

The International Music Award (IMA) is curated by the IMA Panel and the IMA Board.

The Panel is composed of an international selection of artists and experts who will destill a list of nominees across the eight IMA categories. A longlist of potential nominees for each award category will be put together by the Editorial Board of Axel Springer Music Magazines and hosted by Rolling Stone Germany. This longlist will be submitted to the IMA Panel for consideration. Each category will be composed of eight artists, of which the Panel will select a shortlist of three for further consideration. Members of the IMA Panel are among others: Charli XCX, Carl Craig, Liam Gallagher, Adam Green, Lianne La Havas, Joan Wasser, Rufus Wainwright, and Cro.

Once the final three nominees for each category have been placed on a shortlist, a winner will be selected by the IMA Board, which is composed of six renowned and respected international music journalists.

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