The 33RD annual Celtic Media Festival takes place in Derry-Londonderry, Northern Ireland from 18th -20th April. The three day event will see some of the most influential names from the broadcasting and film industries gather at The Playhouse Theatre to celebrate the quality and diversity of work being produced by the Celtic nations today. Among those appearing at the festival are RTE broadcaster Miriam O’Callaghan, Derry actress Bronagh Gallagher and Christopher Young, producer of Channel 4’s smash hit comedy THE INBETWEENERS.
The festival which is supported by Culture Company 2013 - the delivery agency for next year’s City of Culture Celebrations - will launch on Wednesday 18th April with the premiere of Derry On Screen a specially created film celebrating the Maiden City and presented by acclaimed Derry actress Bronagh Gallagher. Commissioned by the Celtic Media Festival and curated by students from The Nerve Centre and the University of Ulster, Derry On Screen will take its audience on a journey through the Maiden City’s on screen history.
Derry On Screen is a funny, moving and evocative portrait of a city, a region and its people. From pioneering aviator Amelia Earhart's unexpected landing in a field in Ballyarnet, through to the dark days of The Troubles and the city’s modern day renaissance as a European cultural destination, a rich wealth of footage will give viewers an insight into the political and personal perspectives that have helped shaped the Derry of today.
Bronagh Gallagher comments: “It’s such an exciting time for Derry in the lead up to the City of Culture year in 2013 and events as prestigious as The Celtic Media Festival give us fantastic international exposure. As a native of the city, I’m looking forward to seeing our rich history celebrated in Derry On Screen. Our city’s people are rightly renowned for their spirit and creativity and this film will be a tremendous testament to them. It’s also a fantastic legacy for the Celtic Media Festival to bequeath the city.”
The premiere of Derry On Screen is just one of the many highlights of the Celtic Media Festival’s three day programme.
The centrepiece of the annual festival is the award of the Bronze Torcs for Excellence. The awards celebrate the very best of film, television, radio and digital media to emerge from within the Celtic diaspora with Celtic languages featuring prominently across all 21 categories. The chair of this year’s international panel of judges is acclaimed RTE Current Affairs presenter Miriam O’Callaghan and the awards will be presented over the 3 nights of the festival.
Miriam O’Callaghan comments: “I’m delighted to chair this year’s International Jury for the Celtic Media Festival. The standard of entry really is testament to the quality and diversity of work being produced from within the Celtic nations. The Celtic Media Festival is a fantastic opportunity for our broadcasting and film industries to showcase their creativity and professionalism and I’m looking forward to three great days of celebration in Derry.”
This year’s Celtic Media Festival keynote address will be delivered by Peter Johnston, Director of BBC Northern Ireland. He will speak publicly about the challenges facing the industry and the importance of indigenous/regional broadcasting in a multi-platform age.
In It’s The Way We Tell ‘Em, some of the most respected names in comedy broadcasting will discuss the remarkable impact that the Celts have had on contemporary comedy. The panel includes Christopher Young, producer of Channel 4’s smash hit THE INBETWEENERS, Rab Christie producer of RAB C NESBITT and MRS BROWN’S BOYS producer Stephen McCrum.
Reality Bites looks set to be the most contentious sessions of the festival. Celebrated Derry based journalist Eamonn McCann will explore the popularity and ethics of the observational documentary with Julian Kean, producer of BBC Scotland’s THE SCHEME, Ewan Angus Exec Producer and commissioner of THE SCHEME, Paul McGuigan Executive Producer of BBC NI’s THE ESTATE and chair Steve Carson from RTÉ. They’ll consider whether these programmes have a responsibility to the people in the shows, and the role that the viewer plays in shaping the way in which participants are judged.
The Changing Face Of News will explore the way social media has revolutionised news reporting. Our impressive panel of experts for this debate includes Siobhan Sinnerton, Channel 4’s Commissioning Editor for News and Current Affairs, Chris Hamilton, Social Media Editor at BBC News and Mark Little, formerly RTE’s and now founder of social news site STORYFUL.
The Celtic Media Festival is an event for producers and broadcasters, for students and emerging talent, for media policy-makers and for the general public.
The festival’s student strand Green Light once again invites media students and new entrants from across the Celtic regions to take part in a diverse and focused programme of events covering various aspects of the media today - animation, production design, camera, documentary making and more... Attendees are also able to be part of everything the main Festival had to offer: the networking, the awards ceremonies and the socialising.
Dòmhnall Caimbeul, Chairman of the Celtic Media Festival comments:
“We’re very excited to bring the Celtic Media Festival 2012 to Derry-Londonderry. This year’s programme looks to be one of our most exciting and diverse yet and we look forward to celebrating the tremendous work that the Celtic nations and regions have produced over the last year.”
Welcoming the Celtic Media Festival to Derry-Londonderry, Shona McCarthy, Chief Executive of Culture Company 2013 said:
“We are very happy to have provided support in bringing the Celtic Media Festival to Derry-Londonderry. Having seen the festival programme, there’s such a rich diversity of events covering a great range of media activity; from comedy to drama and news to sport that it’s sure to be of interest to anyone with even a passing interest in the media landscape.
“As we look ahead to next year’s City of Culture celebrations, it’s fantastic to have so many top names from the world of media here putting a focus firmly on the city. I’m sure many of the delegates and speakers visiting us to take part in the Celtic Media Festival in 2012 will return to the city in 2013 to cover and be part the City of Culture celebrations.”