The Jury Award winners at the ALCS-sponsored UK International Radio Drama Festival have been announced. The Festival took place from 18-22 March in Canterbury, Kent.

Attendees listened to 48 radio dramas in 15 different languages, and this year the Festival organisers decided to go green by swapping the usual boxloads of printed English translated scripts for scripts on e-readers. The jury, chaired by Jonathan Keeble, met at the end of each day to discuss and share thoughts about each of the plays.

Congratulations to the winners who are as follows:

 Long Form Award – £2,000 prize

Die Toten Von Feuerland/The Dead of Tierra del Fuego

By Andreas Ammer and Ulrike Haage, NDR Kultur, Germany (German/English)

Based on the diaries of Charles Darwin and Captain Fitzroy, this play tells of the consequences of being uprooted. On 11 May 1830, the sailors of the research vessel HMS Beagle exchange with the indigenous people of Tierra del Fuego the young Orundellico of the Yamana tribe for a mother-of-pearl button.

What the jury said: “First of all, this was a great true story from history that no one on the jury had ever heard. It felt like you were listening to something important. Within a few minutes of this piece starting, you felt in safe hands. Great radio drama.”


Short Form Award – £750 prize

One of Our Exercise Books is Missing

By Darrick Wood School, UK (English)

11-year-old Danny’s bag is packed, ready for school. But there’s a problem – one of his exercise books is missing. And turning up without his Geography book means only one thing: detention. Can the contents of Danny’s school bag really help him to get out of trouble?

What the jury said: “All week we talked about the importance of getting a younger audience involved in radio drama and this piece does that brilliantly. A fun, inventive story with some excellent acting by the young cast. A drama that appealed to everyone on the jury.”


Audience Award – £750 prize

There’s still time to tune in and vote for the Audience Award before it closes on 30 April. You can listen to the plays on the Festival website and vote for your favourite.

About the UK International Drama Festival

The Festival is the UK’s only European festival of its kind to be produced by an independent company rather than a national broadcaster. It is produced by International Arts Partnership (Artistic Director, Jonathan Banatvala) on a mission to bring audio drama in a range of languages and cultural styles to a UK audience. The Festival’s awards have predominantly been made to emerging international independent producers.

ALCS is currently holding around £112,000 in unclaimed royalties for radio writers – if you know someone who’s not an ALCS Member, let them know that they should join us!