You Were Heard!
The “BE HEARD” Prize Winners Are Announced
The Armenian Communities Department launched the Be Heard prize in April 2020. This unique initiative – the first of its kind – gave Armenian speakers around the world the chance to think and express themselves on a range of critical issues facing humanity.
Speakers of the Armenian language were invited to submit contemporary and innovative audiovisual and literary productions of various kinds that brought forth much-needed discussions tackling contemporary global issues.
We received 165 applications in total, from 18 countries and in various media, from song to animation, from caricature to poetry, and from essay to mixed-media productions… The youngest applicant was 8 years old and the oldest 83. An internal jury of 7 people evaluated all the submissions with great interest and 60 prizes were awarded. Due to the high number of excellent submissions, the number of awards was increased from the 50 that were initially announced, to 60! There were 25 winners from Armenia and 35 winners from the Diaspora. These numbers are in proportion with the number of applications received.Be Heard Prize Statistics
One of the main purposes of this prize was to get people of all ages and backgrounds to think in the Armenian language and to use it as a mode of expression – and especially to use it creatively and differently. This, combined with the potential of the works submitted, and the contemporariness of the ideas expressed, were the jury’s main selection criteria. Choosing the winners was a challenging process. In addition to the quality and the originality of the work, the jury took into consideration the different media of expression, the age of the applicants, and their country of the residence.
We are especially pleased to see that many young people applied to the Be Heard prize with their creative work, in which Armenian was the main medium of expression. We are also delighted to note that this prize fostered a culture of innovation in the Armenian language and has created a sense of need to reach out to and be in touch with other Armenian creative minds wherever they are. As one of the participants subsequently wrote to us, “I am so happy that I wrote about such topics in Armenian for the first time 10 years after graduating high school! I always write in other languages, but I had never thought that it was possible to do the same in Armenian. I thought that I had forgotten [writing in] Armenian, the first words came with difficulty, but after a few minutes, everything came back to me naturally… The only thing I needed, was such an opportunity”.
We thank and congratulate all the participants.List of the Winners
We would also like to share some of the comments we received both from awardees, as well as from those who did not win this time around.