Connecting Latin Americans through the PRIX JEUNESSE Suitcase
In September and October 2022, a new and vibrant PRIX JEUNESSE Suitcase was developed as a key action in the second edition of ‘¿Qué Me Faltó Preguntar?’ (What Did I Miss Asking?). This project is an audiovisual production training program for professionals in the field of TV production for children and youth audiences. It is operated from México under the direction of Elke Franke and Vientos Culturales.
Around 160 participants from México and Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Nicaragua, Perú and Venezuela took proudly home an official certificate to add to their resumes. The diversity of profiles and origins of the participants and the presenters proved essential in enriching the event with a great diversity of views on different themes and audiovisual productions. The selection of programs was curated by Mariana Cano, Aldana Duhalde, Elke Franke herself together with Kirsten Schneid from the PRIX JEUNESSE Foundation in Germany. Through the programs the participants were able to analyze the different audiovisual approaches that the PRIX JEUNESSE Suitcase offered about topics that are extremely important for children in their very heterogeneous realities of the Latin-American region.
The PRIX JEUNESSE Suitcase was spread over 5 Saturday online sessions of 3 hours each. Each session built around a special theme: 1. culture of peace and conflict resolution, 2. inclusion and cultural identity, 3. coexistence with the environment, 4. health and mental health, and 5. sexual education, diversity, equity and gender equality.
Each session offered a wide range of surprising, exciting programs from different PRIX JEUNESSE INTERNATIONAL festivals. Some of the programs brought controversial aspects of dealing with topics such as religion, politics, nudity, death, gender into the discussion and deepened the participants opinions. In all cases, the Suitcase programs were appreciated as unique and challenging. They offered excitement and broadened the view on the power of storytelling with a wide panorama of styles and technics during the 15 hours in total.
Using the PRIX JEUNESSE methodology of screening and debating based on the festival voting criteria, we discussed each content by analyzing the idea, format, concept, script, casting, direction, editing, sound design, and specific target groups. This simultaneously led to a self-evaluation of our own knowledge and experience and a strong awareness of the urgency to advocate for more and better productions for children.
The Suitcase sessions also lead us to rethink our identity as audiovisual producers for children, from new perspectives, both individually and collectively.
One of the most important goals of the training ‘¿Qué Me Faltó Preguntar?’ is to network and build an autonomous community that is interested in growing together in this field, and welcomes everyone who gets involved.
Finally, our goal is to create awareness in the region of the importance of children’s audiovisuals as a high-profile profession that should be more in demand and better valued as a specialization, to support children in their development, to provide them with a stronger sense of identity and with an international projection of their stories. For this huge challenge the PRIX JEUNESSE Suitcase is a great tool, always a source of inspiration and a jolt of good energy.
Mariana Cano (México), Aldana Duhalde (Argentina), Elke Franke (México). ‘¿Qué Me Faltó Preguntar?’ is supported by IMCINE and EFAI México