Dear creators, producers and fans of radio drama for children,

We often hear that children are born like a blank sheet of paper and we have the privilege of shaping them by sharing with them our knowledge, values and the beauty of life through upbringing, education and possibly contact with art. We are living in the 21st century and somehow we feel that the ideal notion of writing on a blank sheet of paper has its shortcomings, considering the social situation in the world, estrangement within families and other tangible misconceptions of the civilized world. All these events influence and shape the hearts and minds of children in a much greater way than we naively wish they would be. Every child is unique and has its unique way of subconscious processing of experiences, coping with various situations, accepting impulses presented to him by teachers or parents with the best intentions. Encounters with art can bring out all sorts of feelings in children, ranging from an enthusiastic acceptance up to a bored rejection. Nevertheless, it is important to not give up and enable the kids to see, read, feel or hear something that is beyond the horizon of their everyday experience. It is essential to give kids a chance to enrich their world through art.

The creators of radio drama for children and youth are well aware of the challenges they are facing – they have to keep up with their listeners, make an effort to use the right language to communicate with them. They should not settle for routine ways of creation because what worked well for children of the Generation X or Millennials may not work for little individualists of Generation Alpha immersed in technology with a growing digital literacy and a decreasing attention span. Producing radio drama for children and youth has many advantages: creators can benefit from the positive aspects of technologies in the most creative ways, boosting phantasy and creativity of children and young listeners, teaching them humanity without making them aware that something important is actually going on while listening to a story. When everything turns out well, radio drama stories reach the right listeners. A child accepts the interesting topic and the unique interaction between the creator and the listener lays foundations of possible future encounters with radio drama. Those creating content for young listeners are well aware of all the difficulties of their job, mainly the need for sensitivity, empathy and creativity in its purest form. They deserve to receive recognition for all the effort they put into their mission and for their accomplishments. The International Children’s and Youth Radio Drama Festival PRIX EX AEQUO organized by Radio and Television Slovakia in cooperation with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) is the right platform to do so. We believe that also this year’s edition of the festival will provide us with a positive feedback on the current state of radio drama production for children and youth.

Ľuboš Černák
Chair of Festival´s Committee
Director of RTVS Radio Programme Services Section

Dear creators, producers and fans of children's drama,

Once again, we have the opportunity to present and compare the very best of radio drama works for children and young listeners, produced by renowned radio broadcasting institutions. The International Children's and Youth Radio Drama Festival PRIX EX AEQUO offers as usually a variety of competing titles whereby each of them is specific in terms of dramaturgy and way of elaboration. Everyone who comes to enjoy the 14th edition of the festival in person may look forward to experiencing high-quality radio productions and immense creative potential of their authors.

The festival presents recent trends in radio drama, focusing on the acute young listener as a specific target group. Everything the audience hears during the event shall inspire, motivate and affect the listener in a quite imperceptible and at the same time very significant way, with story playing the leading role.

The art is strongly associated with the lives of children and youth in the modern society. The characters presented in drama productions have to deal and cope with identic issues as their young listeners do. The only distinctive feature is the narrative of the story, ranging from fairy-tale and realist storylines to stunning metaphoric creations; all depending on the author. Story-telling by means of radio plays the essential role in helping us to perceive the world around us with children's eyes and gain new, unexpected knowledge through “discovering the undiscovered.”

Our festival aims to showcase radio works for children and youth as a part of global culture, to make them “resonate” and impress on recipients world-wide. Radio and Television Slovakia considers the children's and youth radio drama a sensitive indicator of the very fine shifts and changes in both the children's and adults' world. Therefore, I am convinced that Prix Ex Aequo shall act as a platform to introduce in a dignified and respectable manner the wide portfolio of works and creative approaches in the above mentioned field of radio drama.

Michal Dzurjanin
Programme Manager