The organizers of the Mercury Prize have finally shared details about their plans for the 2021 ceremony!
Last year’s ceremony, with the prestigious music prize being awarded to Michael Kiwanuka for his 2019 album Kiwanuka, was drastically cut due to the unexpected coronavirus pandemic.
The Hyundai Mercury Prize is confirmed to return on September 9 at the Eventim Apollo in London in accordance with all the government guidelines as regards to the pandemic, while a 12-strong ‘Album Of The Year‘ shortlist is set to be announced on July 22. The September ceremony will be fully covered by BBC Music via TV and radio.
This year’s ceremony is truly a legendary one since it is the first event to be held since the successful campaign led by Rina Sawayama in order to change the competition’s eligibility rules.
Previously, the pop-artist was prevented from entering the Mercury Prize draw due to an issue around the lack of her British citizenship. Sawayama who was born in Japan but lived in the UK for 26 years, had indefinite leave to remain in the country, but according to Japanese governmental rules, she is not allowed to hold a dual citizenship.
This issue led to BPI agreeing to change the rules for both the Mercury’s and the BRITs allowing artists without British citizenship to be eligible for the awards if they have resided in the UK for five or more years.
In her conversation with NME Rina shared her happiness about the historic rule change back in February this year: “This is the UK I know, and the UK I grew up with – one of acceptance and diversity! It feels really special“.
We’re excited to see more diversity at the Mercury Prize and can’t wait to watch the ceremony in September!