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The National Arts Merit Awards has stepped up preparations for its 14th edition that is scheduled for February 2015 at the 7 Arts Theatre in Harare. The organisers have since received 606 entries from artistes from all the country’s 10 provinces. Entries closed last week, according to communications and marketing officer Catherine Mthombeni. “The adjudication process will commence within a week and those who submitted include production houses, studios, stables, galleries, organisations, associations, groups, artistes, monitors andor the public. However, nominees will be released during the first week of February next year,” she said.

NAMA categories selected this year are: music, literary, dance, visual, film and television, theatre, media, spoken word and special awards.

Speaking on the selection criteria, the organisers said the NACZ had since appointed a team of monitors who keep an eye on “excelling” artistes throughout the year who will also be considered for awards.

“A panel of independent adjudicators is then appointed to preside over all the submissions and nominees and winners are then selected for each award category.

“The adjudicators are guided by a set selection criteria. The NAMA disciplines that are adjudicated are dance, film, literary arts, theatre, music, visual arts, media and spoken word,” said Mthombeni.

NAMA is the forum where National Arts Council of Zimbabwe recognises outstanding achievements within the arts sector.

By rewarding excelling artistes, the awards stimulates more interest in the arts and raises the profile of the same.

The awards are a means of encouraging creativity and excellence in the quality of the arts, making Zimbabwe a force to reckon with on the international arena.

Source : The Herald