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SPADA delegates to meet the kids

kidsonscreen, Auckland, 25 November 2014: This year’s SPADA Screen Industry Summit (Friday 28 November) attendees get the unique opportunity to hear from the audience.

Three students from around New Zealand are attending this week’s SPADA Screen Industry Summit to take part in a Kidsonscreen panel to share their views on what makes great television. They are part of a prestigious jury that earlier in the year watched the finalists from the International Prix Jeunesse award.

Murdoch Keane (16 years) from Western Springs College Auckland is adamant that young people need better programming: “Countries like Finland and Sweden have got it going on and understand their audiences. I think in New Zealand programmers have a fear that the audience will not understand something so we have a tendency to over explain things. It is crucial that you give your audience some credit to work things out for themselves.” He is joined by Henry Hickman from Ashburton and Saffron Calman O’Donnell from Wellington.

“It is really hard to find out what young kids in NZ really want to see on screen because they are limited by what they already know,” says Chair of The NZ Children’s Screen Trust (Kidsonscreen) Janette Howe. “The Prix Jeunesse jury have seen the best programmes for their age group from around the world and it really expanded their imaginative horizons. I know they will be advocates for their age group.”

SPADA Executive Director, Sandy Gildea, “This is the third year SPADA has ensured there is a session at conference on the topic of local children’s content on television. It’s important to continue the dialogue for supporting more strong local content for children, and this year’s panel offers a unique opportunity to have that conversation with the children directly.”

Janette Howe hopes that the panel will encourage more local content for children specific to their age group. “Currently funding is stretched across all age groups and this usually means one local programme made for a specific age group instead of having a range to suit different tastes. The key word the jury came back with was ‘relevance’ – they want to see programmes that are relevant to them”.

The Spada Screen Industry Summit takes place Friday 28 November at Mac’s Function Centre, Wellington. The Summit is attended by key screen production industry producers and practitioners, as well as other screen industry related professionals.

The New Zealand Children’s Screen Trust (NZCST) seeks to enrich the live so New Zealand children by promoting diverse and accessible local content on all screens, facilitating more diverse international content, and by engaging with the public and industry to build a sustainable and specialised New Zealand children’s screen industry.  NZCST has a passionate and experienced board including: Suzy Cato, John Harris, Dr Ian Hassall, Yvonne Mackay, Ian Taylor, Pieter Holl, Kate Stevenson, Dr Ruth Zanker and Tim Riley