The British Academy Television Awards were announced at a glamorous ceremony in London last night. The honours, awarded by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), were sponsored this year by electronics company Pioneer. Awards were made in over 20 categories, ranging from best Actor and best Actress to Best Comedy Performance to awards for New Coverage, Sport and Current Affairs. A number of specialist awards were also made, including the Richard Dimblebey Award, the Alan Clarke Award, the Dennis Potter Award and the sponsor's own Pioneer Audience Award. Winners of the awards receive the traditional BAFTA mask, a bronze trophy designed by American sculptor Mitzi Cunliffe. Commissioned in 1955, the front of the mask is based on a traditional theatrical tragicomic mask but the hollow reverse features an electronic symbol around one eye and a screen symbol around the other. The idea is that these symbols link dramatic production and television technology.
As may be expected with such a prestigious awards ceremony for television production, the event was accompanied by a good deal of media coverage and of course will be broadcast on national television.