• Wednesday, June 12, 2024
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Nigeria Prize for Literature: Eleven in contention for $100,000

Nigeria Prize for Literature: Eleven in contention for $100,000

As the Nigerian literary community looks forward to the grand event of this year’s Nigeria Prize for Literature, the Advisory Board for the Prize has announced the longlist of 11 drawn from 143 plays in the running for the 2023 edition of the prize. This year’s genre in focus is drama.

The literature prize is sponsored by Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) with a cash award of $USD100,000 for the winner.

The 11 plays on the longlist are: Dance of The Sacred Feet by Ade Adeniji, Gidan Juju by Victor S. Dugga, Grit by Obari Gomba, Home Coming by Cheta Igbokwe, The Boat People by Christopher Anyokwu, The Brigadiers of a Mad Tribe by Abuchi Modilim and The Ojuelegba Crossroads by Abideen Abolaji Ojomu.

Others are: The Spellbinder by Bode Sowande, When Big Masquerades Dance Naked by Olubunmi Familoni, Where Is Patient Zero by Olatunbosun Taofeek and Yamtarawala – The Warrior King by Henry Akubuiro.

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The list was presented to the Advisory Board by Ameh Dennis Akoh, a professor of Drama and Critical Theory at Alex Ekwueme Federal University, Ebonyi State, who is also the chairman, panel of judges for this year’s prize. Other panel members include; Professor Osita Catherine Ezenwanebe and Dr Rasheedah Liman.

In their report, the judges stated that the longlist consisted of plays that unravel profound themes, each evidence of the artistry and creativity of their playwrights. The judges also added that the playwrights’ ability to breathe life into their characters and narratives is a testament to their profound insight into the human experience.

Accepting the recommended longlist, Professor Akachi Adimora- Ezeigbo, the board’s chairperson, commended the judges for the thorough exercise of picking the best of the entries for 2023. She said the longlist of 11 was a manifestation of the relentless scrutiny and unwavering dedication invested in the pursuit of true dramatic excellence by the judges. She also commended the playwrights on the longlist, adding that they have emerged as beacons of distinction in the annals of the literary world in Nigeria. Other members of the Advisory Board are Professor Olu Obafemi and Professor Ahmed Yerima.

The judges will also continue adjudication on the 13 entries for The Nigeria Prize for Literary Criticism, which runs concurrently with The Nigeria Prize for Literature. The literary criticism prize carries a monetary value of $10,000.

The Nigeria Prize for Literature rotates yearly among four literary categories; prose fiction, poetry, drama, and children’s literature.

A shortlist of three is expected in September. The winner will be announced by the Advisory Board in October.