Suvarna Garge (Editor)

European Border Breakers Award

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Country  The Netherlands
Hosted by  Jools Holland
European Border Breakers Award

Awarded for  Award to stimulate cross border success of debuting European artists
Date  January (Eurosonic Noorderslag opening night)
Location  Oosterpoort Theatre, Groningen
Presented by  Eurosonic Noorderslag European Commission

Every year the European Border Breakers Awards (EBBA) recognise the success of ten emerging artists or groups who reached audiences outside their own countries with their first internationally released album in the past year. Winners of a European Border Breakers Award include Adele, MØ, The Common Linnets, Era Istrefi, Dua Lipa, Aura Dione, Anna Calvi, Inna, Tokio Hotel, The Baseballs, Helena Paparizou, Zaz, Kerli, Lykke Li, Milow, Katie Melua, Damien Rice, Caro Emerald, Stromae, Sunrise Avenue and Mumford and Sons.



The EBBA Awards were launched by the European Commission and are a European Union award. Since 2009, the awards are organised by Eurosonic Noorderslag and the award is presented at the Eurosonic Noorderslag festival.


  • European Broadcasting Union (EBU)
  • The European Talent Exchange Program (ETEP), which creates a network between European popular music festivals, facilitating the booking of European bands from outside their home country. It also gives information to the media about emerging European artists.
  • Selection of the winners

    The artists or groups nominated for the European Border Breakers Awards are selected on the basis of the following criteria:

  • The success of the first international release in European countries other than the home territory of the artist in the past year.
  • Radio airplay given to an artist by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) radio channels.
  • The artist's success at European festivals (ETEP) outside of his/her home country.
  • Public Choice Award

    Since 2010, an online vote takes place to choose which EBBA Award winner will receive the Public Choice Award, on top of the "regular" award. The first winner was Belgian singer-songwriter Milow. The German rock & roll band The Baseballs won in 2011. Selah Sue from Belgium won the prize in 2012.

    The show

    Since 2009 the award ceremony takes place every year in January, during the Eurosonic Noorderslag festival, in the Dutch city of Groningen, presented by BBC host and musician Jools Holland. EBBA Award winners perform live during the show, as well as during the festival itself. Winners from previous years are invited to perform as special guests. The ceremony is recorded by the Dutch public broadcasting channel NOS/NTR and broadcast through NED3. The show is annually broadcast on several European television channels.


    The EBBA Awards were initiated by the European Commission in 2004. With the awards, the European Commission aims to stimulate the cross-border circulation of popular music repertoire and to highlight Europe's great musical diversity. The European Border Breakers Awards are supported through the Culture Programme of the European Union, which seeks to promote cross-border mobility of artists and culture professionals; to encourage the transnational circulation of cultural and artistic output; and to foster intercultural dialogue.

    Winners EBBA Awards 2010

    Winner Public Choice Award: Milow

    Winners EBBA Awards 2011

    Winner Public Choice Award: The Baseballs

    Winners EBBA Awards 2012

    Winner Public Choice Award: Selah Sue

    Winners EBBA Awards 2015

    Winner Public Choice Award: The Common Linnets

    Best festival act award (awarded for the first time at this edition): Jungle

    Winners EBBA Awards 2016

    Winner Public Choice Award: Carnival Youth

    Winners EBBA Awards 2017

    Winner of the Public Choice Award: Dua Lipa


    European Border Breakers Award Wikipedia