Filipino authors Bien Lumbera, Ricardo de Ungria, Kristian Cordero awarded Southeast Asian Write prize in Thailand

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Filipino authors Southeast Asian Write
Multi-awarded Filipino writers Kristian Cordero (leftmost), Bienvenido Lumbera (2nd from left), and Ricardo de Ungria (rightmost), were awarded the S.E.A Write prizes for 2016, 2017, and 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand. Photo credits to Kristian Seldon Cordero.

Esteemed Filipino writers Bienvenido Lumbera, Kristian Cordero, and Ricardo de Ungria have been awarded the prestigious Southeast Asian Write (S.E.A. Write) prize in Bangkok, Thailand.

The multi-awarded Filipino authors were given their awards in joint ceremonies held on November 25, 2019, at the Royal Ballroom, Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok.

Bienvenido Lumbera received the S.E.A Write Award for 2016. Lumbera is a National Artist of the Philippines and a Ramon Magsaysay awardee for Journalism, Literature and Creative Communications.

Bien Lumbera (seated, extreme right) with other 2016 S.E.A. Write Awardees and Her Royal Highness Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana during the Presentation Ceremony. Credits to the official website of S.E.A Write Awards.

Kristian Sendon Cordero is among the S.E.A Write Awardees for 2017. Cordero has been described as the enfant terrible of Bikol contemporary writings. His books of poetry in three Philippine languages have won the Madrigal-Gonzales Best First Book Award, the Philippine National Book Awards, and the Gintong Aklat Awards (Golden Book Awards).

Kristian Cordero (seated, extreme right) with other 2017 Awardees and Her Royal Highness Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana during the Presentation Ceremony. Credits to the official website of S.E.A Write Awards.

Multi-awarded writer and former University of the Philippines Mindanao Chancellor Ricardo M. de Ungria received the S.E.A Write Award for 2018. Ricardo de Ungria has authored eight books of poetry and ten books of nonfiction anthologies and has recently won the 2019 National Book Award for Best Anthology in English given by the Manila Critics Circle and the National Book Development Board.

Ricardo de Ungria (standing, 2nd from left) received the 2018 S.E.A Write Award, shown here with other from Her Royal Highness Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana and other 2018

The joint awarding ceremony for the 3-year awardees was held this year after being put on hold from 2016 to 2018 due to the passing of the late King Bhumibhol Adulayadej in 2016. The awards event was restored after the subsequent coronation of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn in May this year and granted his daughter, Her Royal Highness (HRH) Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana to give the royal address and preside over the Presentation Ceremony in his behalf.

The S.E.A. Write Award was established in 1979 to recognize and honor the literary excellence of poets and writers from ASEAN countries. The award was given annually for the last four decades for specific works or for lifetime achievements which aim to recognize their creativity and create a wider awareness and understanding of literary wealth in the region.

Earlier this year, Filipino novelists Gina Apostol and Reine Arcache Melvin’s award-winning novels were celebrated in London.

The biggest all-Filipino book fair, featuring outstanding Filipino authors, was also recently held in November.

SEND congratulations in the comments below to our Filipino authors for their winning the S.E.A. Write!

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Ronarose Mae Vicencio
Rona Mae Vicencio is a co-manager, head writer, and producer of the Music and Entertainment Department of DLSU-D's 95.9 Green FM. Rona is a freelance writer who believes in the power and influence of journalism. She uses her voice and pen for those who aren't heard or can't express themselves.