Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Irish Frock & Tuxedo Awards (IFTAs)

I wasn't at last night's Irish Frock & Tuxedo Awards, although I have been an attendee in the past when asked to do jury duty on a few occasions (Best Short Frock, best new talent in a Frock or Tuxedo etc).

Nor did I see the televised (as live) version of the show on RTÉ last night. If Twitterland is any measure then it was not a success. At all. Much talk of inadequate stage management and a complete disregard among chattering attendees for what was happening on the stage.

This should not come as a surprise. It's been a feature of the awards ceremony that has been becoming more evident each year.

But don't forget, these are people who know how to be quiet on set. In fact not just quiet, but absolutely and completely silent. No rustling papers, no stepping on a creaky part of the stage, no whispering to the crew or cast member beside you. If a 2nd AD says "Quiet on set!" even the mightiest ego will be stopped in their tracks, silenced.

So, what's going on? I believe it's a demonstration of complete disrespect for and lack of faith in the whole IFTA process.  It's not about the presenters, award winners or fellow professionals, it's an unspoken determination to turn a charade into a knees-up and thumb the nose at the organisers.

If the event is to survive this year's nadir the 'Academy' will have to take ownership of the entire process and lay down some standards of transparency and accountability. Otherwise the IFTAs party is over.

(another view... Irish Times 7 April)