Top talent prepare to take over Stornoway for Celtic Media Festival

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THE full programme of events for the 2011 Celtic Media Festival was announced this week as the countdown to April 13 begins when the event will return to its birthplace of the Western Isles with a schedule crammed full of top talent.

In it’s 32nd year, the three day festival will kick start the year of Scotland’s Islands and see some of the most influential names from the broadcasting and film industries come together in Stornoway to enjoy and celebrate the quality and diversity of work being produced by the Celtic nations today.

The full programme of events will tackle everything from how to navigate today’s fast moving technology and media, to profile actors delivering master-classes on their career, award ceremonies, panel discussions, a nineties hell-raiser and founding father of Brit-pop; and of course a ceilidh to top it all off.

Donald Campbell, Chairman of the Celtic Media Festival comments: “We’re very excited to be able to share the stellar line up of events set to take place over the course of the Celtic Media Festival.

“We’re confident that this is the strongest, most varied line-up we’ve had in our 32 year history. It’s set to be the hottest ticket in the Celtic nations this spring!”

Additions to the programme announced this week include:

Comedienne Karen Dunbar asks those who commission the comedy and entertainment programmes we see on our screens whether there is a uniquely ‘Celtic’ sense of humour.

Scottish star Peter Mullan will be dropping by to discuss his varied career – from Trainspotting, to his award winning performance in Ken Loach’s My Name Is Joe, to his successful career as writer and director of Orphans, The Magdalene Sisters and the recent highly-acclaimed Neds.

Budding Dermot O’Learys, Alexa Chungs and Steve Jones’ will have the opportunity to learn the basics of what it takes to be a TV presenter from a pro as award winning independent writer and producer, Morag Stewart, joins the line-up.

These announcements come in addition to an exciting discussion involving Come Dine With Me Executive Producer David Sayer; Oscar nominated director Tomm Moore discussing how to make award winning animation and how it feels to go head to head with the big guns at Pixar; and a screening of Triple Echo Productions’ documentary 5 Climbs, 5 Islands.

Also set to be a big draw, a special screening of the new documentary feature Upside Down: The Story of Creation Records, followed by a Q&A with the label’s enigmatic founder Alan McGee, film director Danny O’Connor, and musician Mark Gardener (Ride) who also curated the soundtrack.

The reach of the Celtic Media Festival goes further than the main location of Stornoway with free screenings of the Oscar nominated animated feature The Illusionist scheduled to take place on the islands of Harris, Benbecula, North Uist and Barra.

In addition, the Celtic Media Festival is working in partnership with the 8 ½ Foundation – a project originated by actress Tilda Swinton and filmmaker Mark Cousins – to introduce world cinema to children of the Western Isles.

Two special screenings, introduced by Tilda herself, will take place and admission is free!

For a fill Festival programme and schedule, please visit www.celticmediafestival.co.uk