Powerful documentaries recognised with awards at Telling Tales Festival

Powerful documentaries telling stories about poverty and injustice across the globe were awarded the Grand Prizes at the inaugural Telling Tales International Film and Audio Documentary Festival.

The festival, organised by Manchester Metropolitan University and held at 70 Oxford Street, was the first of its kind in Manchester. Telling Tales is unique in the city for giving equal prominence to audio and film, and the festival also champions the work of newly emerging and student documentarians.

Two overall prizes were handed out for the best film and audio documentary screened at the festival. Grand Prize for Best Film Documentary was awarded to A Call from Water Tank 6, which follows Lia Grace Simon and her four children who were forced to flee the war in South Sudan and are trying to start their lives over in a Ugandan refugee camp. The film is created by students Tove Tikkanen Jönn, Emmi van den Boom and Simon Forsberg, who study at the Red Cross Film School in Stockholm.

The Grand Prize for Audio Documentary was given to The Silent Wound, a documentary that explores the lives of military veterans in Colombia who have experienced many forms of genital trauma. Produced by Natalia Guerrero, her work has featured on the BBC World Service and the award win was retweeted by BBC Mundo to over 2 million followers.

Closer to home, Manchester Metropolitan University’s own Harriet Davies picked up best UK Student Audio Documentary for ‘Origins of the Skinheads’, while professional filmmaker, radio producer and sound artist Ed Prosser was awarded Best UK Audio Documentary for Leaving the Fold, which explores three people who have walked away from their faith.

A full list of winners is available on the Telling Tales website.

Telling Tales was sponsored by Hindenburg, Danish audio specialists who provide intuitive, portable software solutions for storytellers and broadcast journalists all over the world, and Derbyshire’s Torrside Brewery.

Lisa Gold, Festival Director, said: “It was fantastic to see so many thought-provoking and evocative documentaries on show at the first ever Telling Tales International Film and Audio Documentary Festival in Manchester. All of the winners should be extremely proud of their achievements.

“Telling Tales will be back in 2018 with more gripping work which tackles some of the great social and political issues of our age, from both new and established documentarians right around the world.”