Inverness to Host 36th Celtic Media Festival

Inverness has been chosen as the host city for a major international festival renowned for attracting some the biggest names in the broadcasting and film world.
The 36th annual Celtic Media Festival will be held in Inverness next spring, having been held in the Scottish city twice before in 1987 and 1991 and elsewhere in Scotland seven times. 2015 dates and venue in Inverness will be announced over the coming months. The three day celebration of broadcasting and film talent will showcase the very best film, television, radio and digital media to emerge from Cornwall, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, The Republic of Ireland, the Isle of Man and Brittany within the past year.
The announcement follows a hugely successful 35th festival held in St Ives which featured talks and sessions from The Bridge producer Bo Erdhart, My Mad Fat Diary writer and showrunner Tom Bidwell, CEO of Northern Ireland Screen Richard Williams and former Channel 4 Commissioning Editor Marianne Buckland.
The Celtic Media Festival promotes the unique languages and cultures of the Celtic nations and regions on screen and in broadcasting. It is expected to attract over 300 delegates, and host of big name guests and prestigious industry figures to the city. Previous high profile speakers include actors Tilda Swinton, Rhys Ifans and Peter Mullan, film maker Ken Loach, director of The Killing Birger Larsen, News International’s Director of Communications (and former Communications Director for Boris Johnson) Guto Harri, Jimmy McGovern, Doctor Who and Torchwood producer Russell T Davies.
Though the Celtic Media Festival is primarily for industry delegates, there will be a wider programme of local screenings, exhibitions, evening entertainment and celebrity interviews open to the public, including a series of master-classes and seminars for local students.
One of the highlights of the Celtic Media Festival will be the presentation of the prestigious Bronze Torc Awards 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 categories.  The winners will be selected by an international jury, and presented with their awards in Inverness over the three-day event.
Festival Chair, Pádhraic Ó Ciardha said: “We are delighted to be returning to Scotland and to the Highlands for next year’s Festival. Our delegates come from far and near in the Celtic nations and regions and their output spans across the full spectrum of film, TV, radio as well as all forms of digital storytelling. Inbhir Nis/Inverness is an ideal location for such a gathering and we have very happy memories of our previous two Festivals there.”
Councillor Alex Graham, Provost of Inverness said: “Attracting international events and festivals to the City is important to the local economy as they generate income for visitor providers and publicise the City to people across the globe. I look forward to meeting and welcoming all the Celtic Media Festival delegates next spring and take this opportunity to wish the Celtic Media Festival organisers every success.”
Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairperson of The Highland Council’s Gaelic Implementation Group said:  “I am delighted that the Celtic Media Festival is returning home to the Highland Capital next year. The Celtic Media Festival supports the development of lesser used languages across the Celtic nations and is a hugely important event in the Gaelic calendar.
The growth of Gaelic within the media has expanded significantly over the last few years and the Festival helps to increase the profile of Gaelic and creates confidence in the use of the language, within all forms of media in new and innovative ways.
The Celtic Media Festival taking place in Inverness will support the work of the Council’s Gaelic Language Plan and I am therefore very much looking forward to being part of, and assisting the Festival, when it comes to Inverness next year.”
Tom Bidwell, My Mad Fat Diary writer/showrunner and speaker/panellist at Celtic Media Festival 2013 in St Ives said: “Celtic Media Festival is important because it keeps Celtic culture and language in people’s conscience. There are some very talented people working in this section of the industry and some great pieces of work being produced and to recognise that and to spend a few days celebrating that is invaluable.”
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