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2021
Winners announced

About the award

The Multicultural NSW Award ($20,000) is offered for

  • a book of fiction or non-fiction, memoir or history
  • a play, musical drama or comedy, theatrical monologue or other theatrical performance,
  • a book of collected poems or a single poem of substantial length published in book form,
  • the screenplay of a feature or documentary film or episode of a television program (drama, comedy or documentary), or
  • the script of a radio play or documentary

which is deemed by the judges to have made a significant contribution to Australian literature, poetry, theatre, film, radio or television and which also considers:

  • any aspect of the Australian migration experience; and/or
  • aspects of cultural diversity and multiculturalism in Australian society.

 The Multicultural NSW Award may be awarded to either:

  • a book or collection first published between 1 October 2019 and 30 September 2020;
  • a play or music drama which has had a premiere season given by an amateur or professional theatre company before a general audience between 1 October 2019 and 30 September 2020; or
  • the original writer’s script for a feature or documentary or episode of a television program (drama, comedy or documentary), accompanied by a DVD of the feature, documentary or episode.

Writers who have previously won this award are not eligible to win it in the subsequent two years but shortlisted writers are permitted to re-enter new works.

Books, plays, music dramas and scripts may be nominated specifically for this award by their authors, publishers, agents or producers.

The judging panel

Osman Faruqi

Osman Faruqi

Chair

Osman Faruqi is a writer and journalist. He is the editor of 7am, Schwartz Media's daily news podcast, and a political columnist for NME magazine. He is a regular contributor to ABC TV's arts and culture program The Mix and is an adjunct lecturer at the University of Sydney. He is currently writing a book on race and politics due out with Penguin Random House in 2021.

Randa Abdel Fattah

Randa Abdel-Fattah

Randa Abdel-Fattah is a prominent Palestinian Egyptian Muslim writer, anti-racism advocate and Islamophobia scholar. She is currently a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Sociology at Macquarie University researching the generational impact of the war on terror on Muslim and non-Muslim youth. Randa's books include Islamophobia and Everyday Multiculturalism (2018), the co-edited anthology Arab, Australian, Other: Stories on Race and Identity and Coming of Age in the War on Terror, due out with New South Books in 2021. Randa is also the multi-award-winning author of 11 novels published in over 20 countries including multiple translations, stage productions in the US and Australia, and a graphic novel series (China). Her multi-award winning children’s novel, Where the Streets Had A Name, set in Palestine, is on the Australian national curriculum and was in New York Library’s Top 100 books. Randa uses her interventions in the media, her writing, talks and workshops at schools and writer’s festivals to address issues of identity, anti-racism, social justice and human rights causes.

Moreblessing Maturure

Moreblessing Maturure

Moreblessing Maturure is a Zimbabwean/Australian inter-disciplinary artist, TEDx Speaker and the Creative Director of FOLK Magazine. Her written work across literature, stage and screen has included engagements with Playwriting Australia (PWA), Australian Theatre for Young People’s Fresh Ink (2016), and Sydney Theatre Company’s Inaugural Emerging Writers Group (2017-19).

For theatre, she’s currently developing No Pink Dicks, a comedic anthology on interracial relationships with support from PWA and Darlinghurst Theatre Company (DTC) and adapting her immersive/interactive play: Milk & Honey & Lemons, into an audio drama with support from Australia Council. COVID permitting, she’ll be on stage alongside Gemma Bird Matheson for Jasmine Lee-Jones’ Seven Methods of Killing Kylie Jenner at Belvoir St Theatre directed by Shari Sebbens.

Moreblessing’s currently developing a slate of works for screen including: Afro Sisaths - a digital series about four Afro Australian women in Western Sydney navigating everything from nosey Aunties and woke baes and their hair; alongside Masc (Easy Tiger & Revlover)- an anthology which explores modern masculinity from 8 female and non binary creators- both funded by Screen Australia. 2019 also saw her accepted as a participant in Screen Australia’s Developing the Developer program.

Past winners and shortlists

2020

2020
book cover
Hachette Australia
Winner
2020
Growing Up African in Australia book cover
Black Inc.
Shortlisted
2020
book cover
Text Publishing
Shortlisted
2020
The Lost Arabs book cover
University of Queensland Press
Shortlisted
2020
book cover
Melbourne University Press
Shortlisted
2020
Cover image of the book Australianama.
University of Queensland Press
Shortlisted

2019

2019
The Lebs Book Cover
Winner
2019
Rainforest
Shortlisted
2019
Cover image of Home is Nearby.
Shortlisted
2019
Cover image of Too Much Lip.
Shortlisted
2019
Always Another Country
Shortlisted
2019
Miss Ex Yugoslavia
Viking
Shortlisted

2018

2018
Cover image of The Permanent Resident
UWA Publishing
Winner
2018
Matchbox Pictures
Shortlisted
2018
Cover image for No More Boats.
Giramondo Publishing
Shortlisted
2018
Cover image of Dark Convicts
UWA Publishing
Shortlisted
2018
Cover image of Quicksilver
Text Publishing
Shortlisted
2018
Cover image of Down the Hume
Hachette Australia
Shortlisted

2017

2017
Book cover for The Fighter A True Story by Arnold Zable
Hachette Australia
Winner
2017
The Fighter by Arnold Zable
Text Publishing
Shortlisted
2017
Book cover for Promising Azra by Helen Thurloe
Shortlisted
2017
Book cover for Offshore Behind the Wire on Manus and Nauru by Madeline Gleeson
NewSouth Publishing
Shortlisted
2017
Book Cover for Of Ashes and Rivers that Run to the Sea by Marie Munkara
Penguin Random House
Shortlisted
2017
Not Quite Australian
Text Publishing
Shortlisted