The Burgess Prize

The Observer/Anthony Burgess Prize for Arts Journalism

in association with
The Observer

in this section

The Observer/Anthony Burgess Prize for Arts Journalism:

If you’re a journalist, critic, blogger or writer interested in reviewing the contemporary arts, enter the Observer/Anthony Burgess Prize. Please note the deadline for this year’s prize has now passed – thanks to everyone who entered.

Entrants to the prize must submit a review of up to 1,000 words on new work on the arts. Anthony Burgess had a wide range of interests, so there is no restriction on artform. The winning piece could be a review of a book, film, concert, exhibition, album or TV show, or anything else that offers the opportunity to write a lively and thoughtful piece. Recent winners have written on photography, opera – and Justin Bieber.

You could win a first prize of £3,000 and have your work published in The Observer. Two runners-up will also receive £500 each. The winner and runners-up will be commissioned to produce new writing about the arts by our partners Free Word, who will also award a travel grant to undertake research; there will also be opportunities for the winners to contribute to the events programmes at Free Word in London and the International Anthony Burgess Foundation in Manchester.

The panel of judges waiting to be inspired by your entry – which must be previously unpublished – include the book publicist Liz Sich, the director of Free Word Centre Roma Backhouse, the Observer’s ​Arts Editor Sarah Donaldson, the Observer’s Associate Editor Robert McCrum, and the assistant director of the Burgess Foundation, Will Carr.

The prizes are presented by the International Anthony Burgess Foundation and The Observer, in association with the international centre for literacy and free expression, Free Word. Anthony Burgess wrote hundreds of reviews over 30 years for the Observer newspaper. Examples of Anthony Burgess’s journalism can be found here.

Entries must be received by 30th November 2017. The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony at the Guardian Media Group headquarters at King’s Place, London, in February 2018.