Funding scheme aims to give ‘cultural’ boost to local TV

Newly announced Arts Council Malta initiative Kultura TV aims to support ‘innovative and culturally significant’ television programmes 

"Bridging the gap between television and culture" - Director of strategy at Arts Council Malta Toni Attard (far left)

A new fund aims to support the development of cultural and creative content on private broadcasting stations in order to enhance the quality of television programming in Malta.

With an annual budget of €280,000, the fund – called KulturaTV - aims to support the creation of innovative and culturally significant storytelling relevant to contemporary media audiences.

Despite the availability of international channels, Maltese television stations remain the most popular with Maltese audiences. According to a 2014 Broadcasting Authority report, analysed by broadcasting station, local television stations attained the highest percentage of all television viewers.

KulturaTV is open to private broadcasting stations licensed to operate in Malta and independent audiovisual production companies aired on private broadcasting stations. Eligible works can be one-off or serialized and may include drama, creative TV documentaries and culture programmes.

The scheme targets productions on private television stations that require investment to develop works that often lack access to private funding. It also provides an additional incentive to independent audiovisual companies to produce quality-driven television programmes through international co-productions with a potential for international distribution.

“The ultimate beneficiaries of this scheme are Maltese TV viewers,” said Culture Minister Owen Bonnici, who was present at the launch of the fund at the MCAST Institute of Art & Design. Also present was Toni Attard, director of strategy at Arts Council Malta, the entity which will be managing the fund.

“This is the first time that Arts Council Malta is intervening directly in the audiovisual sector, bridging the gap between television and culture,” Attard said. Stephen Cachia, MCAST principal and CEO, added that the fund encourages media students to think about their creative future in the industry.  By supporting the industry, the fund increases students’ employment opportunities.

The fund is competitive and eligible projects will be evaluated by an independent board appointed by Arts Council Malta. Award criteria include relevance to Arts Council Malta’s objectives; the promotion of cultural value and innovation; the quality of the proposal and the experience of the creative team.

The next application deadline is 9 June; evaluations will be held in July 2015; results will be issued on 4 August.

A public information session will be held on 29 April at 14:00 at Fortress Builders, Valletta. To book a space, send an email on [email protected]

More in Cultural Diary

Get access to the real stories first with the digital edition