Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
May 7, 2018

Minister Mitchelmore Congratulates 2018 Arts and Letters Winners

Newfoundland and Labrador’s cultural community was in the spotlight this past weekend as the winners of the 2018 Arts and Letters Awards Program were announced at The Rooms in St. John’s.

Prizes totaling $43,000 were awarded in literary, music, visual arts, and digital multimedia categories. In the junior division, 30 winning entries were submitted from youth, while there were 31 winning submissions in the senior division. A total of 423 entries were submitted for consideration under the 2018 Arts and Letters Program. The Percy Janes First Novel Award, the program’s top prize of $2,500, was awarded to Willow Kean of St. John’s for her manuscript Our Impossible Forever. A detailed list of award recipients can be found in the backgrounder below.

For the first time, the public is invited to a brief exhibition at The Rooms to view works by winners and selected entries of the 2018 Arts and Letters Awards program.

In keeping with commitments set out in The Way Forward, this year the Arts and Letters Awards Program moved to digital delivery for the first time, improving efficiency and opening the program in future to a greater number of submissions from all areas of the province . The Way Forward outlines all actions the Provincial Government is taking to achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living, and can be viewed at

"For 66 years, the Arts and Letters Awards program has celebrated the artistic expression of our province’s artists, both emerging and established. The program fosters the creation of new works through an annual competition that includes the awarding of monetary prizes and the exhibition of winners and additional meritorious entries. Congratulations to all this year’s winners and entrants, and thank you for your continued contribution to the growth and evolution of Newfoundland and Labrador’s cultural landscape. This cultural landscape is a significant contributor to our province both socially and economically, and that is why we are currently holding consultations throughout the province to set the priorities and key actions for a new cultural plan.”
Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore
Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation

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Media contact
Eric Humber
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
709-729-4819, 725-9655


2018 Arts and Letters Awards Recipients

Senior Poetry
(46 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicators: James Langer and Stephen Rowe

Matthew HollettSt. John’sTheory of Ghosts
Catherine DaleyGouldsTo Split Stone
Anna SwansonSt. John’sIn which skinny dipping temporarily fixes a voice
Cory CollinsSt. John’sA Canticle of Morales

Senior Short Fiction
(45 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicators: Sharon Bala and Jessica Grant

Dane GillGanderCassette Tape
Allison GravesSt. John’sShallow Water
John Robinson BlackmoreSt. John’sLub Dub Funk
Colleen SoulliereHarbour GraceDriving Lessons

Senior Nonfiction
(15 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicator: Jenny Higgins

Susie TaylorHarbour GraceAn Inconvenient Heart
Tom MooreSt. John’sThe Rat
Caroline HillierParadiseThe Dove and the Bullet

Senior Dramatic Script
(6 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicator: Sara Tilley

Berni StapletonSt. John’sDolly
Emily BridgerSt. John’sOur Hell is a Good Life

Junior Poetry
(93 entries; $350 prize) Adjudicators: Alison Dyer and Randy Drover

Kelsey BrennanPort au PortDress Code
Emma ButlerKippensMy Sister’s Song
Madison LaSagaStephenvilleDay Dreamer
Sarina QuereshiStephenvilleA Story All Too Common: Confessions of a Brown Girl
Cassandra Clowe-CoishSt. John’sEther, Appeaser
Olivia PerryYork Harbour400 Post Meridiem
Amber GibbonStephenvilleI Knew
Emily GriffinCarbonearI Remember

Junior Prose
(27 entries; $350 prize) Adjudicators: Dave Andrews and Beth Ryan

Dannika FurstSt. John’sThe Waterfall
Madilyn MillerSt. John’sEclipse
Tingzhi Linda ZhangSt. John’s 122
Kate BrownGanderDrifting Memories
Faith FordParadiseI Hope You Never Read This
Emma ColeSt. John’sJubilance
Leslie AmminsonSt. John’sWeight
Hayleigh BurseyMount PearlThe Last Will and Testament of Private Samuel Leighton

Junior French Literary
(6 entries; $350 prize) Adjudicator: Stephanie Bowring

Jada ChesneyMount PearlPetit garçon de musique

Senior Music
(18 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicators: Brian Way, Sonya Gosse, and Joe Argentino

Louise GauthierCorner BrookPetit Coeur
Aiden HarteryGrand Falls-WindsorMundus Novus
John EnnisSt. John’sThe Offering
Allie DuffSt. John’sOn Your Side

Junior Music
(7 entries; $350 prize) Adjudicators: Brian Way, Sonya Gosse, and Joe Argentino

Nick TrnkaSt. John’sPulp Fiction
Paige PenneySt. John’sNatural Disaster
Clare FollettSt. John’sNine Hundred Ninety-Nine
Olivia JonesSt. John’sRain

Senior Visual Art
(100 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicators: Ray Fennelly, Greg Bennett, Philippa Jones

Fatima HammondSt. John’sPitcher Plant
Jill O’ReillySt. John’sShoreline Blooms
Kaitlyn JonesCBSBright Eyes and Blueberry Pie
Deborah CannonPortugal Cove-St. PhilipsRemembering Pennan
Mary DunphySt. John’sBeloved Son
Krista Van NostrandSt. John’sGreat Blue Heron and Bulrushes
Sheri CoombsSt. John’sThe Driver
Tim PottleSt. John’sGot to get me moose b’y
Michael HarlickConception HarbourMoose Knife
Graham CoxSt. John’sBrussel Sprouts
Cindy SaundersSt. John’sNan’s Garden
Darren WhalenSt. John’sTom of the Group of Seventy-Seven

Junior Visual Art
(44 entries; $350 prize) Adjudicators: April White and Jeanette Jobson

Grace WaySt. John’sRose-Coloured Sky
Isobel GauthierSt. John’sCurly
Samantha FrewMount PearlHidden
Rebecca BooneSt. John’sIn Bloom
Andie Lois WinsorMount PearlThe Waiting Room
Kaeleigh FitzgeraldClarenvilleConfined
Ellen SaundersSt. John’sNature’s Eye
Breanna TilleyCBSDeadly Flora

Percy Janes First Novel Award
(11 entries; $2,500 prize) Adjudicator: Janet McNaughton

Willow KeanSt. John’sOur Impossible Forever

Senior Digital Multi Media
(2 entries; $1,000 prize) Adjudicator: Duncan Major

Curtis CollierSt. John’sConfederation ‘49

Junior Digital Multi Media
(3 entries; $350 prize) Adjudicator: Duncan Major

Julia DaweSt. John’sButter Witch

2018 05 07                              3:10 p.m.