Joan Prior Award

Acoustic Routes (The Wellington Folk Centre) is proud to announce its new look Joan Prior Award, an incentive for young performers that has been running since 2014.

This year (2021) the award has been revised, following a review and consultation process, to make it less competitive and more encompassing as an encouragement to young performers.

Under the new format, applicants will no longer compete for a single prize by performing in front of judges at a Wellington Folk Festival concert. Instead, up to seven applicants will be offered full weekend passes to the Festival. They will feature in a Young Performers concert at Wellyfest.

Who can enter?

The Joan Prior Award is open to performers aged from 18 to 25 on September 30, 2021, resident in the Wellington region (the area covered by Wellington Regional Council and Kapiti and Horowhenua Districts).

The award is open to singers and instrumentalists, and to performers of traditional as well as contemporary and original material. Applicants can be a solo performer, or a duo or trio.

All genres of music are acceptable. As a general guide, that includes the wide variety of mainly acoustic music performed at folk festivals.

If there are more than seven applicants, there will need to be a selection process. That will be done by a panel set up by Acoustic Routes, using video/audio samples provided by applicants as a guide. (This is the same process used by Wellyfest to select its acts).

What’s on offer?

Up to seven successful applicants (depending on number of performers in each act) will be offered full weekend passes to the Festival. They will feature in a Young Performers concert at Wellyfest.

Applicants will also receive free membership to Acoustic Routes for a year and will be offered the opportunity to perform at a Young Performers concert hosted by Acoustic Routes sometime in the following year.

Acoustic Routes will also be exploring opportunities for mentoring young performers.

How to enter

Enter by filling out this form. The deadline for entries will be Sunday, September 12.

ACOUSTIC ROUTES, the Wellington Folk Centre, set up the
JOAN PRIOR AWARD for Young Performers in 2014.

       Joan Prior

JOAN PRIOR was a folk phenomenon in Wellington for thirty years,
playing, singing, and making things happen. After she died in 2010 her
family donated her instruments, recordings and memorabilia to Acoustic
Routes, and this enabled us to set up the award in her name to encourage
young acoustic performers.