The winners of the 23rd Frank Collymore Literary Endowment Awards will be announced during a virtual ceremony on Sunday, February 14, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. The event will be streamed on the Central Bank of Barbados’ Facebook page and YouTube channel.
Stephen Brathwaite, Manager of the Bank’s Frank Collymore Hall, revealed that the Bank, which sponsors the competition was forced to postpone the event and switch to an online format after the recent spike in COVID-19 cases scuttled plans for an in-person ceremony.
“When we realised we couldn’t have the scaled-down version of our usual awards at the start of January as we intended, we knew we had to find another way to recognise these outstanding Barbadian writers.”
Brathwaite previewed what people logging on to the show can expect. “We have kept many of the components of the traditional FCLE ceremony. We will still have readings from our finalists and an address from our featured speaker, award-winning Haitian writer Evelyne Trouillot as well as a musical performance from Stringed Brotherhood.”
He also revealed that although the awards ceremony was pre-recorded, the finalists will only learn who the winner is at the same time as the viewing audience.
“That was a tradition we wanted to maintain despite the change in format.” The eventual winner will walk away with a $10,000 cash prize.
“While we regret not being able to celebrate with Barbados’ literary fraternity in person, we also see this as an opportunity to expose more Barbadians to the Frank Collymore Literary Endowment and to encourage those writers who might not have entered the competition before to see what it is all about.”
The FCLE is part of the Central Bank of Barbados’ domestic outreach. It was started in 1997 with the goal of supporting and developing the literary arts in Barbados.
In addition to the annual competition, the programme also conducts writers’ clinics.