The Pascall Prize: Australian 'Critic of the Year' is an annual Australian award for critical writing and review, awarded to a critic whose work over the previous 12 to 18 months has contributed significantly to public appreciation, enjoyment and understanding of the area or areas of the arts in which he or she is involved. It was established in 1988 in memory of Geraldine Pascall, an Australian journalist who died of a stroke at the age of 38.
The recipient of the Pascall Prize is selected by a Judging Panel of industry peers appointed by Directors of the Geraldine Pascall Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation established specifically to award the prize. The Pascall Prize and the Geraldine Pascall Foundation are managed by the Music & Opera Singers Trust Limited (Music & Opera Singers Trust Limited website).
In 2015, the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to film critic, journalist and speechwriter Evan Willams AM on the 23 May 2015 at an event held at the Sydney Writers' Festival.
The Pascall Prize was conceived as a biennial literary award for creative writers who had made original and distinctive contributions to Australia's cultural life. In 1990, to better reflect the work and personal interests of the late Geraldine Pascall, it was decided that the Prize should be awarded annually to a critic or reviewer who contributed regularly in Australia to a newspaper, periodical, or on radio or television. This has now been extended to include the internet.
It was also agreed that the Pascall Prize would be awarded to a critic working in the areas of literature, art (including design and architecture), food and or wine, music, musical theatre, dance and or drama, film, television or radio. Only sport was specifically excluded.
Awards and Prizes
The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to a critic whose body of work exemplifies the values of the Geraldine Pascall Foundation and the Pascall Prize.The inaugural award was presented in 2015.
The Pascall Prize is the only major national prize awarded for critical writing/reviewing in Australia.
The Pascall Prize is awarded to an Australian critic whose work over the previous 12 to 18 months has contributed significantly to public debate, appreciation, enjoyment and understanding of an area of the arts. The recipient of the Pascall Prize is named Australian 'Critic of the Year' and awarded $15,000.
The Pascall Prize seeks to identify and reward an Australian critic whose work:
- stimulates interest in the subject;
- expands knowledge about the subject;
- arouses debate;
- creates a vital, engaging voice in the culture through the expression of strong, considered opinion(s); has intrinsic creative merit.
Recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award
|2015||Evan Williams AM||Simon Thomsen, Roland Gridiger|
Recipients of the Pascall Prize: Australian 'Critic of the Year'
|1988||David Malouf||Edmund Campion (Chairman), Susie McKernan, Elizabeth Riddell|
|1990||Marion Halligan||Andrew Riemer (Convenor), Rosemary Sorensen, Ian Templeman|
|1991||Joanna Mendelssohn||Andrew Andersons, Leon Paroissen, Daniel Thomas|
|1992||Alan Saunders||Gay Bilson, Marion Halligan, Barbara Santich|
|1993||Roger Covell and Cyrus Meher-Homji||Warren Fahey, Diana Simmonds, Ken Tribe AC, Evan Williams, Kim Williams|
|1994||Sandra Hall||Margaret Fink, Richard Glover, Sandra Levy, John O'Hara, Kim Williams (Convenor)|
|1995||John McCallum||Katherine Brisbane AM, Martin Portus, Jane Westbrook, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|1996||Bruce Elder||Roger Covell, Sandra Hall, John McCallum, Joanna Mendelssohn, Marion Halligan, Alan Saunders, Margaret Throsby AM (Convenor)|
|1997||Adrian Martin||Roger Covell, Bruce Elder, Sandra Hall, Marion Halligan, John McCallum, Cyrus Meher-Homji, Joanna Mendelssohn, Alan Saunders, Gay Bilson (Convenor)|
|1998||Andrew Ford||Bruce Elder, Sandra Hall, John McCallum, Joanna Mendelssohn, David Throsby, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|1999||Andrew Riemer||Bruce Elder, Andrew Ford, Marion Halligan, Jill Kitson, Adrian Martin, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|2000||Robert Nelson||Gay Bilson, Marion Halligan, Adrian Martin, Andrew Riemer, Alan Saunders|
|2001||Elizabeth Farrelly||Gay Bilson, Bruce Elder, Andrew Ford, Sandra Hall, Robert Nelson, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|2002||Noel Purdon||Gay Bilson, Sandra Forbes, Sandra Hall, John McCallum, Adrian Martin, Andrew Riemer|
|2003||Julie Rigg||Bruce Elder, Andrew Ford, Sandra Hall, David Throsby|
|2004||Peter Craven||Mary Jo Capps, Andrew Ford, Noel Purdon, Andrew Riemer, Julie Rigg|
|2005||Gerard Windsor||Elizabeth Farrelly, Marion Halligan, Adrian Martin, Robert Nelson, Susan Wyndham|
|2006||Robert Forster||Peter Craven, Malcolm Gillies, Kate Gould, Deborah Jones, Antonia Syme, Lyndon Terracini|
|2007||Paul Byrnes||Bruce Elder (Convenor), Ray Hughes, John McCallum, Julie Rigg, Julianne Schulz|
|2009||Alison Croggon||Kate Eltham, Robert Forster, Leo Schofield, Rosemary Sorensen, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|2010||Mark Mordue||Kathy Cleland, Alison Croggon, Damon Young, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|2011||Geordie Williamson||Mark McCallum, Mark Mordue, Adrian Read (Convenor), Damon Young|
|2012||James Bradley||Alison Croggon, Geordie Williamson, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|2013||Dr Kerryn Goldsworthy||James Bradley, Rosemary Sorensen, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
|2014||James Ley||Jane Caro, Dr Kerryn Goldsworthy, Geordie Williamson, Adrian Read (Convenor)|
- Pascall Prize and Geraldine Pascall Foundation
- Pascall Prize and Geraldine Pascall Foundation
- Hawker, Philippa (23 May 2009) "Blogger first to take prize". The Age
- Romei, Stephen (21 May 2011) "Geordie Williamson". "[(The Australian)]"