Deadline for Nominating Traditional Artists for N.C. Heritage Award is May 1

RALEIGH

Nominations are open for the North Carolina Heritage Award, the state’s highest honor for traditional artists, until Friday, May 1. 

Artists who are recognized within their communities as keepers of North Carolina’s living traditions may be nominated for the award. Past recipients have included musicians, craftspeople, storytellers, dancers, and practitioners of traditional occupations. The award has honored both professionally acclaimed artists and those who practice their art in family and community settings. 

The North Carolina Heritage Award, a program of the N.C. Arts Council, honors active traditional artists; recognizes artistic excellence in a traditional art; celebrates contributions to communities; and promotes North Carolina’s cultural heritage. 

Criteria for selection include authenticity, current and past record of excellence, and significance of the work within the context of the nominees’ specific cultural tradition. 

The Heritage Award ceremony and concert in the spring of 2021 will feature performances and demonstrations from the Heritage Award recipients. 

The North Carolina Heritage Award has honored nearly 145 artists since 1989. Many Heritage Award recipients have also gained national and international attention. Arthel “Doc” Watson, Earl Scruggs, Etta Baker, Ray Hicks and twelve others have received National Heritage Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Watch videos of 2018 recipients here.

Read profiles of previous Heritage Award recipients here.

To nominate a traditional artist in your community, please review the nomination packet