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AFTRA CELEBRATES THE “AMERICAN SCENE”
CALL FOR ENTRIES FOR PRODUCTIONS THAT DEPICT TRUE DIVERSITY

New York/Los Angeles, April 13, 2005
– The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) has issued a Call for Entries for its biennial American Scene Awards®, a national competition that recognizes excellence in the employment and portrayal of women, ethnic minorities, seniors and people with disabilities in a positive, balanced and realistic manner. Celebrating its 12th year, the awards, presented by AFTRA’s National Equal Employment Opportunities Committee, will take place at the union’s National Convention in Los Angeles July 14-17, 2005.

“Advocating for and ensuring the reality of diversity on the screen and over the airwaves both in News and Information programming, and throughout the world of entertainment and music as well, are core values for AFTRA,” stated AFTRA National President John P. Connolly. "Through the American Scene Awards®, AFTRA has found an excellent way to celebrate living evidence of diversity by recognizing superior achievement in Television, Radio and the Recording Industry.  Our judges bring a sharp eye and high professional standards in selecting for this honor the producers and programmers whose work honestly and positively reflects the real diversity of our nation with quality production.  We salute all the nominees and our members who lend their artistry to these fine productions.”

Entries can be submitted in one of several categories including Daytime Drama, Sound Recordings, Diversity of Television or Radio On-Air News Talent, and Television or Radio Entertainment Programming.  Additionally, the American Scene Crystal Award is given to a person or production representing the goals and ideals for which these awards were first envisioned.

The Call for Entries invites submissions for programming that has been produced under an AFTRA contract and which has been produced or originally aired no earlier than summer of 2003.  Entries can be submitted to any AFTRA Local office, or directly to the Washington/Baltimore Local, serving as this year’s Host Committee, c/o American Scene Awards®, 4140 East West Highway, Suite 204, Bethesda, MD 20814.  Deadline for entries is May 30.  The entry form can be downloaded at www.aftra.com or click here to download the form.

Past American Scene Award® winners include:

   ABC Entertainment Television Group and CBS Entertainment Television;
●  KTTV-Fox11, Los Angeles;
●  KRON-TV, San Francisco, recognized for the diversity of its on-air talent and  its
     commitment to the coverage of diversity issues;
●  Frank Abe’s hour-long documentary Conscience and the Constitution;
●  Unshackled!, a weekly half-hour radio drama heard around the world; 
●  WLS-TV, Chicago, for its coverage of disability issues and the employment of a
     profoundly deaf broadcaster as a regular contributor to its nightly newscasts;
●  AIDS:  Africa & America, from Segment Two on KTVU-TV in
    Oakland, California; 
●  Producer Jim Friedman of Cincinnati-based Blind Squirrels Production for
     Our Father;
●  A Class By Themselves from Pittsburgh’s WPXI-TV;  and
●  Producer Kay D. Ray for her short film Northwest Jazz

The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists – affiliated with the AFL-CIO – is a diverse national union representing nearly 80,000 professional performers, broadcasters and recording artists in 32 Locals throughout the country. AFTRA members work as actors, broadcast journalists, dancers, singers, announcers, hosts, comedians and disc jockeys in all aspects of the media industries including television and radio, sound recordings, commercials, industrial non-broadcast, interactive games and the Internet.

Contact:
Rebecca Rhine
rrhine@aftra.com
(415) 713-8301

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