The BBC has announced details of an awards ceremony to honour the best of audio drama from across both the BBC and commercial radio sectors.
The event will be held at Broadcasting House in late January 2012 with programme makers able to submit entries between now and 14 November 2011.
The BBC says the awards aim to ‘celebrate and recognise the cultural importance of audio drama, on air and online, and to give recognition to the actors, writers, producers, sound designers, and others who work in the genre.’
Shortlisted entries will be announced on Monday 9 January with the winners unveiled in the BBC’s Radio Theatre in London on Sunday 29 January. The awards are free to enter and are open to audio dramas first broadcast in English in the UK between 1 October 2010 and 30 September 2011 – or first uploaded for free listening online in the UK during that period. They’re open to all makers of audio drama – not just the BBC and while programme producers may enter up to three categories they are only allowed one entry per category.
Tim Davie, Director of BBC Audio & Music, says: “As a devotee, I know that radio drama builds a uniquely deep connection with its audience, as well as being hugely important to the nation’s cultural and creative life. It deserves to be formally recognised, and the BBC, which invests in so many outstanding productions, is very proud to launch these awards.”
BBC Audio Drama Awards categories
Best Audio Drama
Best Actor in an Audio Drama
Best Actress in an Audio Drama
Best Supporting Actor/Actress in an Audio Drama
Best Adaptation from Another Source (script award)
Best Use of Sound in an Audio Drama
Best Scripted Comedy Drama
Best Online Only Audio Drama
David Hare, playwright, added: “Great radio plays are still produced in such abundance and to such high standards that we either miss them or take them for granted. The BBC’s new Audio Awards will draw welcome attention to some of the many which might have got away.”
David Tennant, actor, says: “The quality of our radio drama is one of the things that makes me proud to be British. Acting on the radio is challenging, inspiring, delicate and always a privilege. Radio drama is often overlooked and undervalued next to its showier younger siblings on the television and in the cinema, and yet it is on the wireless that so many important and brilliant talents have been discovered and nurtured. I am delighted radio drama is being celebrated in this way, it’s about time.”
Johnny Vegas, actor, writer and comedian, says: “Radio drama is both a leveller and a kingmaker. It brings writers, actors and directors the challenge of working with drastically smaller budgets than in TV or film production – but that in turn comes with a hugely valuable freedom because commissioners will take risks and experiment. History constantly reaffirms it but we tend not to recognise it – that despite being one of the oldest mediums, this is still the avant garde for broadcasting.”
See the rules and download an entry form for the awards from the BBC Radio Blog.