The Grawemeyer Award is considered one of the top prizes for those involved in fields such as education, religion, psychology, music composition and improving the world. Distributed each year by the University of Louisville in Kentucky, the recognition awards can be given to recipients from all over the world.
This year, Louis Andriessen took home the 2011 Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition for his latest opera, La Commedia, according to the Washington Post. Premiering during the 2008 Holland Festival, La Commedia is based on "Divine Comedy" by Dante, but also draws from a number of different sources.
Andriessan, who is from the Netherlands, is considered to be one of the best composers in all of Europe.
"Although some describe Andriessen's music as hard-edged," Grawemeyer Award director Marc Satterwhite told NPR. "It is always human and humane."
The news provider reports that Andriessan has received other recognition awards for his work, including being named the 2010 Composer of the Year by Musical America. He was also the composer's chair at Carnegie Hall in 2009.