International Prize Winners Shine At the 25th Festival Operagala at the Deutsche Opera, Berlin

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On November 3rd, the Deutsche Opera re-opened its doors to the festival Opera Gala which benefits the German AIDS Foundation. It was an exclusive evening for the more than 2000 guests who came from all spheres of society.

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Monica Geingos holds her World Without AIDS Award during the 25th Opera Gala. (Photo by Franziska Krug/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

The founders Dr Alard von Rohr and Alfred Weiss were especially delighted by the visit from the German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Acknowledging the presence of the Federal President during the event the founders observed: “It is a great honour that the Federal President himself supports the great cause and greets our guests.” The foundation reportedly received some 540,000 Euro a large portion of which would go towards supporting HIV and AIDS causes.

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Sir Bob Geldof and Monica Geingos attend the 25th Opera Gala (Festliche Operngala, AIDS Gala) aftershow party at Deutsche Oper Berlin. (Photo by Franziska Krug/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

The annual highlight of the event is the presentation of the “World Without AIDS Award,” which
was awarded to the First Lady of Namibia, Monica Geingos, and to Sir Bob Geldof, for their
outstanding engagement in the global fight against HIV and AIDS.

“I am honoured to receive the World without AIDS Award. I regard it as an encouragement not
just for me, but for all the people who are relentlessly fighting to change the course of the HIV epidemic. Only by joining forces in Namibia, in Germany and across the World can we achieve
our goal towards ending the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030. We are close to achieving an AIDS-free generation and we must maintain the momentum”, said the First Lady at
the awards ceremony.

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Jens Spahn and Dunja Hayali welcome Sir Bob Geldof on stage during the 25th Opera Gala (Festliche Operngala, AIDS Gala) at Deutsche Oper Berlin. (Photo by Franziska Krug/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

And Sir Bob Geldof added: “It was great to be back in Berlin and see the enthusiasm about the fight against AIDS. I am proud to be honoured at this event. But we must not stop until we succeed. I really hope, Germany will increase its contributions to the Global Fund. It is the best tool we have.”

Singer and moderator Max Raabe charmingly guided the audience through the elegant programme of the jubilee gala with the greatest international stars of the opera: Xabier Anduaga, Bogdan Baciu, Venera Gimadieva, Julia Lezhneva, Elena Maximova, Maria Mudryak, Martin Muehle, Olga Peretyatko, Dmytro Popov and Alexander Tsymbalyuk who enthralled the audience with their high-level of performances.

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Dr. Alard von Rohr, Monica Geingos, First Lady of Namibia, Andreas Banjamen Dawid Guibeb, Ambassador of Namibia, and Alfred Weiss during the 25th Opera Gala. (Photo by Gisela Schober/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

The conductor of the orchestra of the German Opera, Berlin was Enrique Mazzola. The after-show party with the Chris Genteman Group, Winnie Appel & Paa’pa, Band Munique, as well as the DJ team Beck To Beck, was more than worthy of a jubilee gala as the guests celebrated cheerfully until the early morning hours. Some VIP’s could be seen on the red carpet: Sir Bob Geldof, Dunja Hayali, Christine Neubauer, Palina Rojinski, Wotan Wilke Möhring, Andreas Bourani, Simone Thomalla and many others.

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Zsa Zsa Buerkle, Ursula Karven and Ruby O. Fee during the 25th Opera Gala (Festliche Operngala, AIDS Gala) at Deutsche Oper Berlin. (Photo by Gisela Schober/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

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Palina Rojinski and Andreas Bourani during the 25th Opera Gala (Festliche Operngala, AIDS Gala) at Deutsche Oper Berlin. (Photo by Gisela Schober/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

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Lisa Martinek during the 25th Opera Gala (Festliche Operngala, AIDS Gala) at Deutsche Oper Berlin. (Photo by Gisela Schober/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

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Intendant Dietmar Schwarz, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Federal President of Germany, and his wife Elke Buedenbender and Dr. Kristel Degener during the 25th Opera Gala (Festliche Operngala, AIDS Gala) at Deutsche Oper Berlin. (Photo by Gisela Schober/Getty Images for Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung)

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