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Prestigious International Award for Documentary on One Programme

20 February: Documentary-maker Zoë Comyns awarded 2013 Åke Blomström Memorial Prize

Documentary-maker Zoë Comyns has been awarded the 2013 Åke Blomström Memorial Prize for her programme, Documentary on One: Seen from a Distance, which was broadcast on RTÉ Radio 1 in August 2012.

In the documentary, Zoë and her family make a personal journey back to a cottage in Leitrim they abandoned 35 years ago, to pick through the discarded possessions that were left behind, and to consider why they have never been back until now.

The Åke Blomström Memorial prize is awarded each year to promising feature makers under the age of 35. As part of the prize, Zoë will travel to the International Features Conference in Bergen, Norway, next May, where she will present Documentary on One: Seen from a Distance and participate in a five-day listening workshop to discuss a broad range of inspiring radio documentary programs from around the world.

On winning the award, Zoë says: "I have been a radio producer for a number of years but it never occurred to me, until last year, to make a documentary about my own family and the cottage. It was an extraordinary journey for us to make as a family and a deeply personal one. Using radio to tell the story allowed the listeners to imagine the cottage and my family for themselves and make their own connections. The Åke Blomström Award is a real honour to receive as it is awarded by an International cohort of feature makers. I’m delighted that the story stood out to the jury and hope it encourages other feature makers to explore their own histories. I appreciate and relish the opportunity to attend the International Features Conference in Bergen and hear the high quality of work presented there."

Lorelei Harris, Editor of Features, Arts and Drama, RTÉ Radio 1, says: “I am delighted that Zoë Comyns has been awarded an Åke Blomström prize to attend the International Features Conference in Bergen this May. This award stands not only as testimony to Zoë’s talent and promise as a documentary-maker, but to the commitment of the Documentary on One team to the development of documentary work in Ireland.

Download Documentary on One: Seen from a Distance: www.rte.ie/doconone/documentary-seen-from-a-distance.htm

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