Media awards honour Cretan Anzacs story


Mike, pictured at a hideout used by the Cretan Resistance during the Nazi occupation to shelter soldiers, near the village of Patsos.

Mike Sweet wins MIMA Best Editorial award for ABC documentary

Journalist Mike Sweet has taken out the Best Editorial award for ABC documentary Escape from Crete at this year’s Multicultural and Indigenous Media Awards (MIMA).

Two years in the making, the ambitious radio documentary honours the Cretan Anzacs, telling the story of Indigenous Australian soldier Captain Reg Saunders’ time on-the-run in 1941, and the relationships that grew between Allied soldiers and the Cretan families who protected them.

First broadcast by ABC Radio National on 19 May, 2016 to honour the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Crete, the judges were impressed by the project, their comments reflective of Sweet’s high calibre of work: “Exclusive research, highly creative production skills, and insightful editorial judgement were brought to bear on a vital story of timeless Australian multicultural values.”

Sweet spent three months in Crete researching and recording interviews for the program, with families who were involved in looking after Saunders for almost 12 months, from June 1941 until May 1942.

To help reveal the remarkable and largely unknown story of his time in Greece, Sweet went one step further by retracing Saunders’ movements across the island and using field recordings at vital locations.

In an interview with Neos Kosmos, Sweet expressed his gratitude to the ABC and said he was thankful to be recognised for his work.

“As a project that took me nearly two years to make, it’s very satisfying to receive an award for a project that was so close to my heart,” he said.

“I’m very grateful to the ABC for commissioning the story, and the tremendous help I had from my dear friends in Crete, the Saunders family, and from the Greek Australian community in Melbourne and Sydney.”

The MIMA presentation dinner was held at Brighton Le Sands in Sydney on Friday 14 October and was well-attended, with guests including Labor MP for Barton Linda Burney and Race Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane.

Now in its fifth year, the initiative was established in 2014 by MIMA chairman Shaoquett Moselmane, the first Muslim member of the NSW Parliament.

Escape from Crete is now available as a download at…

source: Neos Kosmos

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