News Item

A New Canadian Literary Award

Thursday, June 15, 2006

“The Voice Electric / La Voix électrique”

Canada now has its first ever literary prize honouring the career and work of a spoken word / poetry in performance artist, thanks to two Montreal-based organizations - Les Filles électriques and Wired on Words.

The Voice Electric / La Voix électrique Award, worth $2,000, will be awarded annually during the Festival Voix d’Amériques (FVA), to French and English-language artists in alternate years. Artists from Canadian First Nations who present their work in their own language are eligible at any time. For the first two years, the Award is being sponsored by a private donor.

The Voice Electric / La Voix électrique Award will recognize literature by an artist who creates and performs his or her own work on stage. It will celebrate the artist’s creative path and contributions to the development of the discipline. The Selection Committee, working under the direction of D. Kimm, Executive and Artistic Director of Les Filles électriques, and Ian Ferrier, co-founder and Director of Wired on Words, will evaluate candidates based on factors such as originality in the creative process, mastery of the genre, innovation, the use of new technologies, contributions to the community, the quality of the writing, and openness to diverse voices.

The winner of the first Voice Electric / La Voix électrique Award will be announced at the 2007 FVA, taking place February 2 to 9, 2007. An event to honour the Award recipient will also be organized as part of World Poetry Day, March 21.

Spoken word artists interested in applying for the inaugural award should submit a covering letter, curriculum vitae, press clippings, audio and visual clips, and letters of reference from members of the community. The deadline is Monday, October 30. The letter and portfolio should be sent to the offices of Les Filles électriques, 5143 boulevard Saint-Laurent, Montréal, H2T 1R9. For further information: 514-495-1515.

Les Filles électriques is a non-profit organization whose mandate is to create, distribute and archive multidisciplinary works and events in oral, written and electronic literature.

Wired on Words is a recording label specializing in the distribution of literature in performance. It also organizes the monthly Words & Music evenings at the Casa del Popolo.