AIM OF THE AWARDS

The mission of the Audio Production Awards is to recognise and celebrate outstanding achievement within the designated categories covering both producers and on-air talent. 

The details that follow are for reference only, as these Awards are now closed for entries, and judging is underway

ENTRY/JUDGING

The first 14 categories of the Audio Production Awards are open to public entries and will be judged by an independent panel of judges drawn from across the audio sector. You can submit your entries by following this link, but first please read the guidance below!

For the first time this year, where possible, categories will be “blind judged”. This means that judges will not see fields containing the name of the entrant, or their company, which risks introducing elements of conscious or unconscious bias.  Clearly this will not be possible in all categories, such as best presenter, where the entrant will be obvious.

RIG wants to lead the way in this becoming best practice for industry awards. We strive to make the APAs fair and inclusive, with a level playing field for all entrants, and truly about recognising the best audio production work regardless of source.

We therefore strongly encourage entrants not to include personal information, including the use of gender pronouns, in any fields other than name/company. If an entrant chooses to include personal details, or are identifiable from the audio, we will not able to review and remove this. 

The awards for presenters (New Voice Award, Best Presenter - Speech, Best Presenter - Music) will be open to written nominations from Radio Independents Group (RIG) Members with the winners then chosen by the RIG Awards Committee.

The qualifying period for the awards is from 1st July 2016 to 30th June 2017.  And the entry fee is just £30 + VAT for RIG members and BBC staff, or £48 + VAT for everyone else.

The maximum length of audio clips is 15 minutes, unless otherwise stated and written nominations/supporting statements are not to exceed 600 words.

Entries for each of these awards should either reflect a “body of work” consisting of excerpts from several productions, or demonstrate the full range of production skills in an exceptional one off programme.

1.       BEST ARTS/MUSIC DOCUMENTARY/FEATURE MAKER

This category celebrates the best of culture-based audio and radio. Typically, the content submitted will cover areas based around the arts or music, but other arts related topics will be accepted. The programme or podcast content will have been reported and produced to the highest of standards, and should give a sense of special insight into their subject.

2.       BEST CURRENT AFFAIRS DOCUMENTARY/FEATURE MAKER

Entries into this category will have been created by outstanding producers, who have made programmes or podcasts led by the current affairs agenda. This may include investigative, news, or foreign reporting, as well as science, issue or ideas programmes based around our rapidly changing world. It also includes content reflecting on past events. The judges will be looking for a strong journalistic instinct, and a clear and gripping narrative.  We are particularly interested in entries which cover local or regional stories.

3.       BEST CREATIVE DOCUMENTARY/ FEATURE MAKER.

This category celebrates exceptional understanding and use of sound to convey a story or emotion. Typically this could be in podcast, documentary or short feature form and entries which include challenging audio, soundscapes, montage or sound art are particularly encouraged.

4.       BEST COMEDY PRODUCER

All comedy based audio and radio will meet the criteria for this category; be it a sitcom, scripted comedy, sketch shows or panel shows. In short - if its format was designed to make you laugh, it fits the bill. The judges will be looking for creative and innovative comedic style, as well as more traditional comedy done sublimely.

5.       BEST ENTERTAINMENT PRODUCER

Submissions to this category will showcase the work of outstanding entertainment producers, who successfully create fresh and amusing content. The audio can feature entertainment from many broad formats; be it live daytime programmes or light-hearted podcasts, but must not be ‘pure comedy’ - such content should be entered into Category 3.

6.       BEST MUSIC PRODUCER

This award is for an exceptional producer working in music.  Entries can include a range of music programming, from single programmes to sequence programmes.  Judges will be looking for an understanding and appreciation of the music and the genre alongside creativity and excellent production values.

7.       BEST SOUND DESIGNER/ENGINEER

For production and broadcast (live or pre-recorded) capturing the atmosphere of musical performances in concerts, festivals and studios. Or for sound designers (studio managers or engineers) working on any type of production. Judging criteria will include technical skills, sound quality, innovation and creative contribution, as appropriate.

8.       BEST PODCAST PRODUCER

This award is for an outstanding Podcast Producer who truly understands the podcast medium and its audience.  Judges will be looking for compelling content combined with creativity that takes full advantage of the medium. 

9.       BEST DIGITAL PRODUCER

This award will recognise an individual who understands the social media environment, and is able to deliver smart, creative content that makes full use of the platform it’s on. Social media, video elements and/or online presentations should be submitted as hyperlinks in your supporting document.  An audio file is not required for this category, though you can submit one if you prefer (up to 15 mins).

10.      BEST DRAMA PRODUCER

This award is for an exceptional audio drama producer.  An individual who is able to bring the story, the characters and narrative, to life through skilful production.  In this category, entry length is up to 30 minutes, to allow space to show the full impact of the entry.  This can either be an unedited 30 minutes or extracts from several related pieces (a series) up to 30 minutes.

11.      BEST AUDIOBOOK/READINGS PRODUCER

The award recognises the producer of audiobooks. Judging criteria will include the range and choice of material, performance, direction and production values. In this category, entry length is up to 30 minutes, to allow space to show the full impact of the entry.  This can either be an unedited 30 minutes or extracts from several pieces up to 30 minutes in total.

12.      BEST NEW PRODUCER

To honour a newcomer to audio production who has shown great potential. The judges will be looking for evidence of a sustained contribution to a production or production company, or for a remarkable debut as a producer or engineer. 

13.      BEST STATION SOUND PRODUCER

For producers who are working in or contributing to radio/audio imaging and/or station sound production. Judges will be looking for exceptional creativity in audio branding and station promotion, such as station IDs, jingles, music beds, voiceovers, programme trails and promotions. Content can be created for online distribution only or for radio broadcast.

14.      GRASSROOTS PRODUCTION AWARD

For an individual, production company, radio station or community-based organisation that has shown extraordinary achievement in identifying, nurturing or mentoring new and diverse talent to the audio industry.  This category is not aimed at the new talent themselves.

15.       BEST PRESENTER - SPEECH

For exceptional on-air talent presenting speech programmes or podcasts.  Judging criteria will include compelling conversation, brilliant interviews, creativity and connection with their audience. 

16.      BEST PRESENTER - MUSIC

For exceptional on-air talent presenting music programmes or podcasts.  Judging criteria will include an absolute understanding of the music genre they are in, ability to share that passion, creativity and connection with their audience. 

17.      NEW VOICE AWARD

For exceptional presenters who have either recently entered the broadcasting or podcasting world or gained significant mainstream recognition for the first time. 

18.      GOLD AWARD

For an individual who has made an outstanding contribution, usually over a number of years, to the independent radio and audio production sector in the UK. Whilst this is aimed at an individual, strong cases for teams may be made to the committee.

19.      INDIE OF THE YEAR 

This award recognises and celebrates a company’s success across the year.  Entries welcome from the smallest to the largest companies. In this category, entry length is up to 30 minutes, and judges will consider the level of creative excellence as well as business challenges and growth of the company during the qualifying period, and taking into account the size of the company.