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FINALISTS OF ACT AWARDS (article first published : 2003-08-23)

Top Durban publicist Illa Thompson is uncontested in her category of Publicist of the Year for the Arts & Culture Trust Awards 2003.

The ACT Awards, in association with Mail & Guardian and Nedbank, acknowledge the fine work done by individuals, organisations and agencies who have played an important supportive role in the development of arts, culture and creativity in South Africa. They are a celebration of excellence in areas often hidden behind the scenes of public events.

By placing a range of activities in the spotlight, the awards aim to improve the conditions under which the arts are produced. They develop an awareness and appreciation of allied arts industries and open the field for a greater sense of participation in the cultural life of our country.

This year the awards attracted a wide range of entries in the various categories - a manifestation of the growing body of dedicated professionals working in the media, publicity, management, education, finance and capacity building who provide quality services to the local cultural sector. It is an indication that the awards are considered significant and are thus intensely competed for.

The annual ACT Awards ceremony will be hosted by Nedbank in Johannesburg on September 18. All the nominees and finalists for the 2003 ACT Awards are commended for their fine work and their participation. The finalists, judged by an independent panel, represent the highest levels of professionalism, dedication, leadership and achievements in their respective fields.

The following are the finalists in the eight categories of the 2003 ACT Awards:

ARTS & CULTURE ADMINISTRATOR OF THE YEAR: Tammy Ballantyne (Performing Arts Network of SA); Mandy Gilder (National Archives of South Africa) and Carole Hoch (Department of Arts & Culture).

ARTS & CULTURE JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR: Bongani Madondo; Themba ka Mathe and Sean O'Toole.

MEDIA OF THE YEAR IN SUPPORT OF ARTS & CULTURE (INTERNET & PRINT): Artslink; ArtThrob and Screen Africa.

MEDIA OF THE YEAR IN SUPPORT OF ARTS & CULTURE (RADIO & TELEVISION): Pieter Cilliers Productions (Kyknet); Radio Today and Yired.

CULTURAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECT OF THE YEAR: Dance for All; Joubert Park Project for the Creative Inner City Initiative; Mogalakwena Craft Art Development Foundation and Moving Into Dance Mophatong.

ORGANISATION OF THE YEAR IN SUPPORT OF DEVELOPMENTAL ARTS & CULTURE: MTN Foundation; Norwegian Band Federation (Norges Musik Forbund NMF) and V & A Waterfront Sponsorship of Aqua Opera & Singathon.

MOST SUCCESSFUL ACT-FUNDED Project: Buskaid Soweto String Project; Centre for the Book, The Book Development Foundation; Field Band Foundation and First Physical Theatre Company.




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