Frequently Asked Questions

What do we award?

The PdSK draws the public’s attention to outstanding new music productions, word art productions, and cinematic music documentations. The prerequisite is that they are publicly accessible. Criteria for nomination and evaluation can be the interpretation, artistic quality, repertoire value, presentation, sound quality, and much more.

How are the awardees determined?

To this end, the jurors nominate productions/albums for the Quarterly Critic’s Choice (Bestenliste) in their respective specialist juries. A Long List is published, to announce the nominated titles. The expert juries are responsible for evaluating the nominees. Also, all jurors may suggest outstanding personalities for the Honorary Awards and »Nachtigall« (Nightingale). The annual committee meets once a year and determines the Annual Awards, Honorary Awards, and the Nachtigall.

What kinds of productions are allowed?

Next to traditional sound carriers such as CD, vinyl, DVD, and Blu-ray, digital publications such as streams and downloads have also been rated and awarded since 2017.
The productions must be available to the general public in German-speaking music retailers (on-site or in online shops); direct sales through, for example, the producers’ website are also allowed. However, individual mp3 files, pre-releases, or demo tapes will not be taken into account.

When should I submit my production?

To allow the jurors enough time to listen to and evaluate your production, and to avoid conflicts between the official release date and the PdSK’s internal nomination deadlines, please make the samples available as soon as possible, ideally as soon as you receive them from the pressing facilities.

The following deadlines apply to the Quarterly Critic’s Choice:
Quarterly Critic’s Choice internal nomination date 1
No. 1 05.12.
No. 2 05.03.
No. 3 05.06.
No. 4 05.09.

1 On these deadlines, the jurors of the specialist juries must submit their nominations for the quarter.

Which other dates are relevant for me?

The deciding factor for the nomination of productions is the date they were published. A production is considered published from the point in time at which it is available and deliverable to the public.

Since productions of the previous quarter are recognized through the Quarterly Critic’s Choice, only titles that were published in the previous 3 months can be considered per list.

This results in the following cycle for the Quarterly Critic’s Choice:
Quarterly Critic’s Choice contains productions with the official release date
No. 1 06.09. until 05.12.
No. 2 06.12. until 05.03.
No. 3 06.03. until 05.06.
No. 4 06.06. until 05.09.

Example: An album released on 25.04.2020 can only be nominated by the jury members for the Quarterly Critic’s Choice No. 3/2020, as its release date lies between 06.03. and 05.06.

Unfortunately, the release of a production may be too close to the nomination date, and it misses the nomination either because the jurors in the relevant jury only got the production after the deadline or because they could not evaluate it in time for other reasons. However, a second chance for recognition for these cases exists in the form of the Annual Award; if a juror is so convinced of the outstanding quality of the production, he may nominate it for an Annual Award. The Annual Awards are published in October of each year and take productions from the past 18 months into account.

How do I submit a production?

Samples can be sent physically or digitally directly to the respective jury members. It is advisable to send a sample to every member of a jury. By submitting a new production, you are making the relevant jury members aware of the new production.
However, the submission of a sample does not automatically guarantee a nomination. The nomination is the sole responsibility of the jurors of the PdSK. All our jurors work independently and decide at their discretion which productions to nominate.

Who do I send my production to?

Please do not send any sound carriers (CDs, DVDs, Blu-rays, or vinyl records) to the office without being asked. On request, you will receive the contact details of the jury members of the PdSK (email and postal address) from the office.
All categories are listed in combination with the respective jury members on this page. Samples can be sent to them specifically, as well as to multiple juries.

How do we choose the winners?

The details on how winners are determined and how the PdSK functions is explained in the implementation regulations. The differences between the Quarterly Critic’s Choice, Annual Awards, Honorary Awards, and the »Nachtigall«, are also described.

What will it cost you?

Unlike other prizes and awards, we do not charge any nomination fees. Every production has an equal chance to win an award.

Golden stickers: We only charge for our golden stickers – a recognized seal of quality for 50 years. These stickers can be obtained through the office. (Price list: see below). By ordering them, you support the voluntary work of the jurors and, at the same time, acquire the right to use this seal of approval in advertisements, catalogs, and independently printed material. Use is not compulsory. The use of digital stickers on the Internet is free of charge when linked to our website. Digital versions of the stickers will be sent to the winners by e-mail.

Hand-signed certificates from the Quarterly Critic’s Choice: In addition to the free delivery of digital certificates, we also offer individual, hand-signed certificates in German and English (DIN A4) on request. We charge a processing fee for these documents.

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