A new prize has been launched to recognise works of fiction and non-fiction that best epitomise, inspire and promote the Spirit of Singapore. The Dr Alan HJ Chan Spirit of Singapore Book Prize is worth $30,000, making it the highest sum ever awarded for a book in Singapore. It was created from a gift from the estate of the late Dr Chan, who was chairman of the Singapore Press Holdings and the Singapore Tourism Board. The prize will be awarded annually and is open to books in any language that have been published in Singapore or by a Singaporean author. A committee will also consider works that may have been published outside Singapore but have had significant impact here, and it is possible the scope of the prize could be expanded to include films and comics in the future.
An archaeologist whose work refutes the common misperception that Singapore’s history started with the landing of Sir Stamford Raffles has won the inaugural Singapore History Prize. Professor John Miksic’s Singapore and the Silk Road of the Sea, 1300-1800 has been praised as an important work that has triggered a fundamental reinterpretation of Singapore’s history. It has shed light on a thriving community in Singapore that existed long before Raffles arrived in 1819.
The Singapore International Violin Competition final round took place last Wednesday (14 December) and saw Ukrainian violinist Dmytro Udovychenko take the top prize, worth USD $50,000. Danish violinist Anna Agafia Egholm and Hong Kong/Chinese violinist Angela Sin Ying Chan secured second and third respectively.
It is reported that the top ten winners will receive funding and mentorships to bring their solutions to life. In addition to this, they will be given the opportunity to showcase their ideas at a series of public engagements. The competition was held in partnership with the Ministry of Community Development and Youth, and was broadcast to a global audience on CNN.
In a speech at the launch of the prize, PM Lee Hsien Loong noted that nations are based on shared imaginations, and in this case, Singapore’s shared narrative is the story of its survival. “The prize is a tribute to all the steadfast men and women who have contributed to this narrative,” he said.
The prize is a welcome addition to the many existing prizes and contests in the country. However, it is important to note that prize promotions and competitions are subject to the Betting and Sweepstake Duties Act. This means that there is a possibility that the promoters and participants of the promotion or contest could face legal consequences. Hence, it is essential to seek professional advice before conducting any promotional activities. A professional can help to ensure that the promotion and contests comply with the law and to mitigate any potential risk. Click here for more information on the BSA.