A Golden Week of Plovdiv Festivities: Bulgaria's Top TV Festival
The city of Plovdiv was once again the venue for the 2009 edition of the Golden Chest International Television Festival.
The event, organized by Bulgarian National Television (BNT), began in 1968. Since then, it has been held on 34 occasions. This year’s festival was hosted, as usual, by Hotel Novotel Plovdiv.
Plovdiv may be the second city of Bulgaria, but it is rightfully regarded as the most significant center of culture and arts, promoting several major artistic festivals throughout the long summer season. The Golden Chest is one of the most important annual events held in the historic city.
This year, the international event attracted more than 200 guests from 27 countries, ranging from Norway to China and Korea. Eastern European representation was considerable, as one would expect, and a total of 56 broadcasters took part in this, the biggest festival to date.
BNT is also celebrating 50 years of broadcasting. In her opening address, the Director General, Uliana Pramova, said: "Our task as festival organizers is all the more pleasant as 2009 marks the 50th. anniversary of BNT."
She continued: "Our efforts are aimed at strengthening the position of the Golden Chest as a significant cultural event which encourages the television industry."
The week-long showcase, which ended Saturday, October 10, was packed with daily presentations and group meetings, including an international seminar on the rights of audio-visual authors and artists. BNT featured its wide range of programming, from children’s programs to experimental drama. The travel program, Atlas, was prominent; over 2 000 editions have been transmitted in the past 40 years.
Those guests who had some free time visited Plovdiv’s picturesque Old City, leaving the jury members hard at work in judging the wealth of submitted programs. In a new departure, an additional category of productions was introduced – that of TV Formats.
The winners in each of the four categories were:
TV Films and Series: France, with "Alone", directed by Fabrice Cazeneuve.
TV Documentaries: Norway and Romania, with "Killing Girls", directed by David Kinsella.
TV Reports: Japan, with "China In A Torrent: The Patient Brigade", directed by Jin Takayama.
TV Formats: Finland, with "Cultural Fitness Clinic", produced by Marjaana Mykkanen.
Bulgaria was successfully represented, with the prize named for Galya Bachvarova awarded to "The Outcasts", a film by BNT and Kamera Ltd.
Elena Yoncheva won the Bronze Chest for her report "Somali Pirates" produced by BNT, and there was a special mention in the TV formats category for "The Lives of Others", produced by Old Schools Productions.
Members of the international jury congratulated the winners and runners-up for the consistently high quality of their productions.
Dewi Wyn Williams, from Channel 4 Wales, targeted the Bulgarian production "Football Chameleons". "I was really pleased with this program. Apart from its production qualities, it impressed me to see a vivid program tackling contemporary events and lives. Too often, I have noticed a tendency to look for subjects set in the past."
His colleague Karol Cioma, Training Director of CIRCOM, lamented the total absence of entries from Scandinavia and the United Kingdom: "I just don’t understand why, with their wide production base, these countries did not attend what is an internationally recognized and pan-European festival," he said.
Vezhdi Rashidov, the Bulgarian Minister of Culture, presented the awards at the closing ceremony. He mentioned that he has been involved in the Golden Chest right from its beginning. In his other, lifelong capacity as a renowned sculptor, he designed and cast the original trophies, 40 years ago.
The festival organizer, Rossinka Radoykova, from BNT’s International Relations Department, was more than pleased with the outcome of the festival. "Our team of six persons has worked hard all year to make this a success. We are looking forward to starting work on the next edition, which will be even bigger and better. What’s more – I hope to see the Golden Chest celebrate its own 50th. year!"
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What kind of neanderthal would appoint that Turkish vermin Vezdi for a culture minister of Bulgaria?!? Ridiculous!
I am not impressed with Boyko's ability to pick outstanding cabinet members. Maybe he is being too "partisan" when he limits his choices only to his own party. He should try to surround himself with intelligent and capable people, regardless of party affiliations. Doesn't he understand that most of these so-called loyal party members are turncoats who "converted" to his party when he started to win votes?
"Vezhdi Rashidov, the Bulgarian Minister of Culture, presented the awards at the closing ceremony. He mentioned that he has been involved in the Golden Chest right from its beginning. In his other, lifelong capacity as a renowned sculptor, he designed and cast the original trophies, 40 years ago."
More Communist trash. Really Bate Boyko has plenty of them in his cabinet it seems. So much for GERB being an "alternative" to the BSP...