Media release from WA Screen Academy

In a gala ceremony at the splendid Melbourne Recital Hall on October 21st, the WA Screen Academy film ‘Stripped’ won the award for Best Tertiary Short
Fiction. The film was a collaboration with the Aboriginal Theatre program and was directed by graduate Geoff Kelso and famed indigenous actor Kelton Pell. ‘Stripped’ was written by Andrew Hale and produced by classmate Ali Roberts. Two other films were finalists in the competition. ‘Family Tree’ in the Short Fiction category and ‘Australian Stars’ in the Best Tertiary Documentary division.

This the second year in a row that the Screen Academy has won in this highly competitive category over entries screen training programs in the East.
The Australian Teachers of Media (ATOM) is the national organisation of teachers at the Primary, Secondary and Tertiary level. Director of the WA Screen Academy, John Rapsey says, “The ATOMs are the only national awards in which the films and documentaries from the tertiary programs are judged alongside each other. The results of the past few years demonstrate that our students’ work is second to none.

In the final award of the evening John Rapsey was honoured as the 2011 ATOM Teacher of the Year. In making the presentation, Simon Wilmot, the ATOM Awards Executive Officer, noted that John had been nominated in 2010 as well. He explained that the judges made the award on the basis of a body of work submitted on behalf of the students of a program. To accept the award, John was accompanied to the podium by Melbourne-based graduates Magda Wozniak (Neighbours) and Sophie Mathewson (Ish Media). John said that the award really belonged to all of the staff and professional mentors who support the Screen Academy students. “Excellence comes from the fact that every creative decision from the concept to the finished film is interrogated, clarified and refined. In the end it is the talent and persistence of the students that determines the quality of the work. So this award is a tribute to them.”

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