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     FrontPage Edition: Sun 26 September 2004

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Singapore writing gets S$54,000 funding

Singapore writing gets a S$54 000 shot in the arm with The Arts House's and Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences of the National University of Singapore's year-long NUS–FASS and The Arts House Writing Fellowship programme.

The developmental programme seeks to nurture emerging Singaporean talent as well as the creation of new works from Singapore.

The appointed Fellow will be given an annual stipend, time, opportunity and space to create a new work and to conduct public programmes involving young writing talents.

The Fellow is required to complete a written work in any of the following genres: prose, verse, stage play, radio play or screen play, of a standard ready for publication by the end of the fellowship.

In addition to the creation of new works, the Fellow is committed to interacting with the community and stimulating interest in critical discussion and new writing among young people through regular public programmes.

Said Associate Professor John Richardson, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, NUS, “ FASS at NUS and The Arts House have come together for an exciting new venture, a Fellowship for emerging writers. In distinction from some other posts for writers, this one is aimed specifically at encouraging new writing, and at providing time for one new writer to finish a substantial work. The Fellowship will also involve workshops and writing groups, which will bring together and energise as many young writers as want to take part.

FASS suggested this project because the Faculty and the Arts House are perfect complementary partners for a project of this kind. The Faculty has experience and academic expertise, as well as its inventive and adventurous students. The Arts House is a new arts organization, determined to realise its vision to create a space where artists and public meet and 'where all are inspired by the arts'.

This is an important initiative. It will give a boost to young Singaporean writers, and will help in the production of one substantial work.”

“The nurturing of young talent, activities which engage the community and being involved in the development of new Singaporean work are issues very close to The Arts House's intent and mission. So when we were approached by an institution such as the FASS that is of similar mind and intent, it is a fortunate encounter that cannot be ignored. Synergizing our intents and resources resulted in this Fellowship programme,” elaborates Phan Ming Yen, The Arts House's Director of Artistic Development.

Mr Phan continues, "We cannot stress enough the importance of the Fellow's responsibilities not only to his art but also to the community at large. These are responsibilities we hope will see fruition through the creation of a work that will open new vistas in its chosen genre, and engender interaction and inspiration with our youth.”

The application is now open. All applicants must be Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, who have published some works. In the interests of emerging talent, first publication should not be more than seven years ago.

Applicants will be selected for his/her artistic excellence and potential, and the strength of his/her proposal for activities during the fellowship.

Starting in December 2004, the fellowship will focus on works written in English in its first year. The Fellow will spend at least two days a week in each organisation.

The selection panel comprises academics, arts administrators, a publisher and a writer.

Upon the successful completion of the year-long stint, The Arts House and FASS-NUS will look to publishing or staging the completed work.

Contacts:

Ms Mary LOH
Director, Audience Development, 
The Old Parliament House Limited,
1 Old Parliament Lane
Tel: (65) 6332 6901 
E-mail: Mary_Loh@toph.com.sg 

Ms Mary LEE
Assistant Director, Corporate Communications & Marketing , 
The Old Parliament House Limited,
1 Old Parliament Lane
Tel: (65) 6332 6903 
E-mail: Mary_Lee@toph.com.sg  

Ms SANTIE Pillai
Manager, 
Office of Corporate Relations, NUS
Tel: (65) 6874 4520
E-mail: ocrsp@nus.edu.sg 

Source: National University of Singapore Press Release 9 Sep 2004

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