Amidst the most testing of times for the arts in the North East, there is still much to celebrate after a scintillating year. SAM WONFOR sets the scene for The Journal Culture Awards and urges you to vote for the best of 2012.
COULD there be a better time to shout about the North East’s cultural offering? With arts funding hanging in the balance, we want The Journal Culture Awards 2012 to serve as a fanfare for the achievements, talent and output of the region’s culture community.
The only way to ensure this is the case is if you take a bit of time to nominate the people, performances and events that have thrilled or impressed you this year.
Nominations are now being accepted in 15 awards categories.
For the past seven years, The Journal Culture Awards have highlighted creative excellence and innovation.
Once again held in association with Arts Council England, the final details of next year’s award ceremony – relating to the achievements of 2012 – are being finalised and will be announced soon.
But in the meantime, we need to elicit your help in finding the finalists who best illustrate the wealth of talent we’re lucky enough to have in the North East when it comes to culture.
These are the categories:
:: Visual Artist of the Year
:: Performance of the Year
:: Performing Artist of the Year
:: Newcomer of the Year
:: Writer of the Year
:: Renaissance North East: Museum Award (recognising a special or innovative museum project)
:: Arts Council Award (for a truly excellent piece of work)
:: Best Arts & Business Partnership
:: Best Event Tyneside
:: Best Event Northumberland
:: Best Event Sunderland
:: Best Event Durham
:: Best Event Teesside
:: Best Overall Event (selected from the five sub-regional event winners)
:: Special Contribution to Arts and Culture in the North East
Past winners have spanned the arts and entertainment spectrum.
They include musician Kathryn Tickell, comedian Sarah Millican, The Futureheads, Rachel Unthank and the Winterset, choreographer Liv Lorent, artist Laura Lancaster, Durham lighting festival Lumière, authors David Almond, Chris Mullin and Richard Milward, The Durham Book Festival, Live Theatre artistic director Max Roberts, the Turner Prize at Baltic and Northern Stage production Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
The closing date for nominations is February 10, 2013. Any event, exhibition, performance or publication which has taken place between January 1 and December 31, 2012, is eligible. Judging will take place early next year, with the winners announced at a ceremony in the spring.
As well as the presentation of the awards themselves, the ceremony will also see some of the region’s most talented performers take to the stage.
In the six awards ceremonies so far, the audience have enjoyed performances from the likes of Beccy Owen, Sakoba Dance, Katie Doherty, The Futureheads, The Unthanks, BalletLorent, Kate Fox, The Cornshed Sisters, and Smoove and Turrel.
Brian Aitken, editor of The Journal, says: “Now, more than ever, it is important to celebrate and shine a light on the tapestry of talent and rich cultural offering we have in the North East.
“We know from talking to our finalists and winners that the Culture Awards represent a real stamp of achievement and are something we and the recipients are very proud of.
“We’re currently putting together exciting plans for the ceremony in the spring which we’re confident will be the best yet.”
To make a nomination for The Journal Culture Awards visit www.journallive.co.uk/cultureawards and click on the link.
The Culture Awards represent a real stamp of achievement and are something we and the recipients are very proud of