(MENAFN - The Peninsula) By Raynald C Rivera | The Peninsula
Doha: In its fourth edition, the Katara Prize for Prophet's Poet has received 1,158 entries — the biggest number since its launch, the Cultural Village Foundation — Katara announced yesterday.
The finals of the competition, which is divided into two categories namely Classical Poetry and Colloquial Poetry, will be held from September 22 to 26 which will witness the announcement of winners.
Dr. Khalid bin Ibrahim Al Sulaiti, General Manager of Katara, said the number of participants this year is the biggest since the Prize was launched in 2016, with 23 percent increase from last year's 942 participants. He said that the Prize's Committee had received 1,082 entries in the Classical Poetry category and 76 entries in Colloquial Poetry category.
Dr. Al Sulaiti said the most number of entries came from Egypt and Sudan which reached 399, followed by Iraq and other Levant countries with 308 entries. The committee received a total of 293 entries from Maghreb countries, 134 entries from the Gulf region and 22 entries from non-Arab counties.
Khalid Al Sayed, general supervisor of the Prize said that the judging panel for the competition comprises professors, academics and experts in the field of poetry. The screening committee includes five members for each category while the jury for the final comprises three members per category.
Al Sayed stressed that the committee adopts transparency throughout the award saying the screening committee will review and evaluate the poems without knowing the name and nationality of the poets.
Fifteen shortlisted entries from each of the two categories will be chosen to compete in the preliminaries from September 22 to 26, from which three winners in each category will be proclaimed winners at the conclusion of the event.
The prestigious award carries cash prizes worth a total of QR4.2m. The first prize winner in each category will get a cash prize of QR1m while winners of the second and third place positions will get QR700,000 and QR400,000, respectively.
The 30 shortlisted poems, that entered the final round, will be published by Katara Publishing House in a book. It will also be made available in CD format.
The Prize aims to cultivate the love for The Prophet in the minds of the young generation and keep them attached with the history and traditions of the Prophet. It also underlines the importance of poetry in uniting the Arab and Muslim communities and revives the great poetic tradition of the Islamic world.