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Celtic Media Festival: The International Summit of Sound and Screen comes to Cardiff

08 Mar 2024 6 minute read
Celtic Media Festival Torc Award

Stephen Price

An annual three-day celebration of Celtic media will take place in Wales this summer, highlighting a diverse body of work from creatives across Scotland, Ireland, Wales, the Isle of Man, Cornwall, Brittany and Galicia.

Taking place from 4 – 6 June, the annual Celtic Media Festival visits Cardiff this year, with RTÉ, BBC, Sky, France 3 Bretagne, TG4, Televisión de Galicia and S4C all in the running for prestigious trophies.


Presenters Sanjeev Kohli and Cathy MacDonald have announced the full list of nominees for the Torc Awards for Excellence, unveiling those in the running at this year’s Celtic Media Festival: The International Summit of Sound and Screen.

This year’s shortlist includes previous Torc Award winner, BBC Scotland and BBC Two hit thriller Guilt, starring Mark Bonnar and Jamie Sives, which has been nominated with its third and final season in the coveted Drama Series category alongside BBC One miniseries Steeltown Murders, RTÉ One’s black comedy Obituary and Amazon Prime Video & Televisión de Galicia’s thriller Operación Marea Negra.

Steeltown Murders

In the running for the Comedy award is BBC ALBA’s mockumentary Glan Fhein, which was produced by The Comedy Unit, the hit-making team behind Soft Border Patrol, Still Game and Gary: Tank Commander, S4C’s Welsh language sketch show Dim Byd Fel Dim Byd, and Sky Atlantic’s romantic drama, The Lovers, starring Johnny Flynn and Roisin Gallagher.

Not just a successful year for comedy, Sky TV has been nominated across five categories in total, with its atmospheric black and white adaptation of The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde, filmed live in Edinburgh’s historic Leith Theatre and shown on Sky Arts, recognised in the Arts category, and Sky Crime documentary Fred West: The Glasgow Girls included in Factual Series.

In the Feature Documentary category, Spike Milligan: The Unseen Archive gets another nod for Sky Arts, while Samuel Beckett biography Dance First has been nominated alongside I Am Kevin and O Corno for the Single Drama award. 

Welsh represenatation

Also nominated for Single Drama is Y Sŵn, which tells the true story of the battle to establish a Welsh language television channel, S4C.

One of the most colourful chapters of modern Welsh history told in an imaginative and unique style and intrinsically linked to the emergence of Celtic Media Festival.

A scene from Y Swn – a film about the battle to establish S4C

The Single Documentary category has proven popular at this year’s Torcs, as award winning director Mark Jenkin is receives a nomination for his film, A Dog Called Discord, alongside RTÉ One’s powerful Atom Film production, Am I Here?, which explores homelessness in Dublin, and BBC ALBA’s Deilbh Dr Hay: An Island Doctor’s Legacy.

Also nominated from Brittany, Et en plus ils dansent! tells the stories of four gay men who found solidarity and support in Celtic social circles in Brittany and two outstanding documentaries both exploring the menopause in their respective nations, Meanapás: Meon Nua, from TG4, and BBC ALBA’s Trusadh – Làn-sgur fuil-mìosa.


BBC Three and BBC Wales documentary Blood, Sweat and Cheer receives nominations for both Single Documentary and Sports Documentary, where it’s joined by Clive Sullivan: Rugby League Legend from BBC One Wales, BBC ALBA’s Cold War Hockey, RTÉ Liam Brady: The Irishman Abroad, TG4’s Misneach: Alex Lee, My Husband the MMA Fighter, from BBC Scotland, and TT+’s Tourist Trophy, one of a record number of nominees from the Isle of Man. 

Celtic Media Festival – Iaith Gymraeg

Also representing the Isle of Man this year, is Shellan Ellen ec y Valley in the Children’s Programme category, Little Brown Bird, which is in the running for the Short Drama award, and Short Form nominee in·spi·ra·tion.

The Feature Documentary category presents a diverse array of compelling narratives. Lyra, an intimate journey through ‘post-conflict’ Northern Ireland, authored by journalist Lyra McKee, who was shot dead by the New IRA in April 2019.

Bill Douglas: My Best Friend tells a story of friendship between Bill and Peter Jewell, portrayed through the 8mm films they created together, bridging the gap between his tumultuous upbringing and his cinematic exploration of it. You’ve Got A Friend In Me – The Golden Friendships Story showcases a heartwarming journey of community unity, laughter, tears, and the creation of a safe and inclusive space for an overlooked segment of society.


Continuing in the Feature Documentary category, Y Tad y Mab a’r Côr is a poignant film about male relationships and ageing, seen through the prism of the Trelawnyd Male Voice Choir. 

Competing against other phenomenal films from across most of the celtic nations and regions this year including A Year in a Field,  Maria Casares, La Mujer Que Vivio Mil Vidas, Mission E-TY, Spike Milligan: The Unseen Archive and The Eagle With The Sunlit Eye, each film offers a unique perspective, showcasing the power of storytelling to captivate audiences and provoke meaningful reflection on the complexities of the human experience.

Y Tad, Y Mab a’r Côr. Image: S4C

The festival’s Presenter of the Year award recognises talent from across the airwaves, with Scotland’s Emma Lamont and Kaye Adams nominated alongside Ireland’s Lynette Fay and Máirín Ní Ghadhra, and Mirain Iwerydd and Wynne Evans from Wales. 


RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta’s moving tribute to pioneering Irish Language broadcaster and winner of the CMF Radio Presenter/Personality Award in 2011, Bladhaire – Clár Ómóis do Rónán Mac Aodha Bhuí, is nominated in the Entertainment category alongside productions from Scotland and Wales. 

Representing a first nomination for Cornwall in the Comedy (Sound) category, BBC Radio 4’s Wosson Cornwall is recognised alongside hugely popular topical sketch show, A Perforated Ulster, from BBC Radio Ulster, BBC Scotland’s Breaking The News, weekly round-up Clonc from BBC Radio Cymru, children’s radio show Nero’s Class from RTÉjr Radio, and comedy panel show hosted by Kiri Pritchard-McLean, What Just Happened?

Kiri Pritchard McLean

Entering its 45th year, the Celtic Media Festival will take place at the Marriott Hotel in Cardiff city centre from 4 – 6 June 2024 at the Marriott Hotel.

You can find out more information about the Celtic Media Festival here.

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