In the last scene of the movie Amadeus, Antonio Salieri says: "Mediocrities everywhere … I absolve you. I absolve you … I absolve you all." Salieri is bitter about the ingenuity of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, but he is not blind to it. These last words reveal that Salieri concedes that his successes are meagre in comparison to Mozart’s. It’s that time of the year where entries for the Loeries, the advertising awards show for Africa and the Middle East, open. It is also that time of year when a crisis begins in the minds of some people who still question the value of an awards show. For those, I will say this: the Loeries is about rewarding, recognising and inspiring great work in our industry. The importance of awarding outstanding work is simple – it discourages mediocrity. In a context where SA cannot succumb to mediocrity on any level, it becomes even more significant that the language of excellence is part of our every day. In advertising too, it has become too easy to give way to ...

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