RNIB Talking Books shortlisted by the New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards

RNIB-LogoNational sight loss charity RNIB (Royal National Institute of Blind People) live recording achieves international recognition

For the second year in a row RNIB has been shortlisted by the New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards.

RNIB’s Talking Books Live production of Agatha Christie’s ‘The Murder of Roger Ackroyd’ has been shortlisted for the Best Drama Special award. The Talking Books Live production was staged at the British Library in November 2015 to celebrate 80 years of Talking Books. It marked the announcement that RNIB’s Talking Books service is now free for blind and partially sighted people to use.  A recording of the Talking Books Live production is available to listen to on RNIB Connect Radio, in part 1 and part 2.

Last year RNIB won a bronze award in the Audio Books (Fiction) category for the recording of John Niven’s ‘Straight White Male’.

The New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards honours work in radio broadcasting and receives entries from radio stations, networks, and independent producers from 32 countries.

RNIB is the only charity on this year’s shortlist, which includes entrants from Canada, India and South Korea. The winners will be announced in New York City next month.

Daryl Chapman, Studio Manager at RNIB, said:

“Everyone at RNIB is bursting with pride that we have been shortlisted by the New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards for a Best Drama Special award. Nomination at this level on the worldwide stage for any audio production is an enormous honour, and it’s testament to the important work our staff and narrators do every day. It’s fantastic to be shortlisted after RNIB won an award in the Audio Books category last year. We’re keeping our fingers crossed we win again.”

Lord Julian Fellowes, Chairman of RNIB’s Talking Books Appeal, said:

“As Chairman of RNIB’s Talking Books Appeal I was honoured to host the 80th anniversary event at the British Library, where we recorded the book that has earned us this wonderful nomination.  And the fact is, even being nominated is a prize which we all value tremendously. My wife, Emma, and I are great Agatha Christie fans, anyway, and sitting in the audience that evening as the play was recorded was the greatest possible treat in itself, reminding us both, if we needed reminding, that we must do more to make reading accessible to everyone, and this includes people who are blind or partially sighted.

“I am particularly thrilled that RNIB and my publishers, Orion, have worked together to make my new novel Belgravia available to people with sight loss at the same time as the print copy is released for everybody else. In this, I am following the praise-worthy example set by J. K. Rowling with her Harry Potter books, and I hope it is a model that more and more writers will copy in the future.  Reading is learning and knowledge and enjoyment, it is travel and exposure to new ideas, and it must be at least available to every man and woman alive.”

About RNIB

Every 15 minutes, someone in the UK begins to lose their sight. We are the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and we’re here for everyone affected by sight loss – that’s almost 2 million people in the UK. If you, or someone you know, has a sight problem, RNIB can help. Call the RNIB Helpline on 030 3123 9999 or visit www.rnib.org.uk

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