The Festival (IFoLT)

In 1995, the International Festival of Local Television/Golden Beggar was started by the owners of new local television stations made possible by a change in the political and economic systems. It was a self-help effort, and it has continued to work as such. With a programme competition, workshops and debates, the Golden Beggar has helped to define and refine the idea of non-national media, local and regional, not only in Eastern Europe, but across the continent as well. The festival’s organisers continue to see this part of the media space as invaluable in the building of democratic processes and economic development.

The Golden Beggar Competition

“The Golden Beggar ” – competition

The main prize of the Festival has already become a prestigeous award and proof of successful and creative work, highly valued by local television authors and creators. Recent years have also seen a growing significance gained by the Young Author and Production Company awards. The Golden Beggar has become an award which is a kind of a hallmark of high professional standards for young authors and independent producers

The competition for Golden Beggars will be divided as usual into three sections:

Production Companies

Young Authors

Local Televisions

Each category will have its Golden Beggar. Programs will be listed in six categories –Investigative Reports, Documentary, Fiction, and Animation, Media literacy projects and Participatory projects.

The organisers expect to receive the entries which “... reflect the life and fates of people living in your place. We also welcome works that reveal serious present-day problems of like corruption, blackmail, minority and cross-border problems, the fates of children and women; programmes that reflect consequences of global warming or those of the global financial crisis …”, Unconventional filming techniques and ways enriching the audiovisual means of expression are encouraged.

The content of these films makes them unique, as they introduce information about lesser-known regions, the intriguing fates of people, and expose events that reflect current social processes and that influence goings-on in Europe. One festival-goer puts it this way: “Every year I get my education about what is really going on in Europe by watching these films.”


Chairman of the Jury

Roger Worrod (*1939) Switzerland
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.*

Graduated from The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (London). As an actor, was ‘Bruder’ in Ken Russell’s award-winning masterpiece: “Song of Summer”; as a director-writer-narrator, made 4 documentaries about Malta. As a dubber, provided voices for Gian-Maria Volontè, Bud Spencer and Fabio Testi among many others; as a writer-narrator has worked on nearly 3,000 audio-visual productions.

Local televisions

Marcel Dekanovský (*1948) Slovakia
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.*

Graduated in direction from the Prague film academy FAMU , director of feature-length films, plays adapted for television, several children’s story series, documentaries, feature films. Recognized with numerous domestic and foreign awards.

Karin Ragulová (*1973) Slovakia
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.*

Karin Ragulová was born in 1973. She has completed her master studies at the Faculty of Arts of the Comenius University in Bratislava, where she studied Slovak language and literature as her major subject. Since 2010 she has been working in the Council for Broadcasting and Retransmission in the Department of Programme.

Production companies

Ovidiu Dumitrana (*1970) Romania
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.*

He gained remarkable experience and results in the field of audio-video productions in TV Oltenia (documentary, artistic, presentation films). He produced over 70 films on local and national TV channels and was awarded over 20 national and international prizes. Presently he is a film producer and a PR and mass-media expert for EU funded projects. Several years worked for the Romanian government as a PR and mass media expert.

James Sutherland-Smith (*1948) United Kingdom
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.* ) 

Writer, teacher of English, and, with his wife, Viera, the leading translator, of Slovak poetry into English. He has lived in Slovakia since 2001 although from 2002 to 2009 he was working in Belgrade. His last collection of poetry was “Popeye in Belgrade” and “Dinner With Fish and Mirrors”, a selection from the work of the Serbian poet,

Young Authors

Elena Romanato (*1967) Italy
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.*

Graduated Faculty of Public Relations and Faculty of Political Science in Milan, is a freelancer journalist. She's been working at Millecanali Magazine – monthly magazine about radio, tvs and broadcast - since 1996. She was editor in chief of Computer Arts - Future Media Italy, wrote for the magazine Eurosat; currently she works for the newspaper La Stampa and Millecanali.

Darko Kovič (*1969) Serbia
*e-mail: Turn on javascript to see the email.*

Graduated from Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Belgrade Profesional experience: Film & TV Production KRUG- Technical Director; City Council of Niš - Media promotions designer; Radio Television Serbia and Television of Niš - cameraman and picture designer, author of many distinctive short and documentary films, TV serials, media campaigns, promotional films and music spots.  


Golden Beggar Award; Cena Zlatý žobrákThe main prize of the Festival has already become a prestigeous award and proof of successful and creative work, highly valued by local television authors and creators. Recent years have also seen a growing significance gained by the Young Author and Production Company awards. The Golden Beggar has become an award which is a kind of a hallmark of high professional standards for young authors and independent producers.

The competition for Golden Beggars is divided into three sections:

  • Production Companies
  • Young Authors
  • Local Televisions.

Each category will have its Golden Beggar. Programs will be listed in seven categories – News and Investigative Reports, Documentary, Fiction, and Animation. In the 22nd edition there will be three new categories -  media literacy projects, participatory projects and competition of extremely short films (XSF).

Awards at the 22nd International Festival of Local Television

Three of the awards to be presented Saturday night are named Golden Beggars. The sections of Golden Beggar Awards are:
1. GOLDEN BEGGAR for the best local television program
- donated by the Mayor of Košice
2. GOLDEN BEGGAR for the best production company film
- donated by CITY TV Foundation
3. GOLDEN BEGGAR for the best young author‘s film
- donated by Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic

Who Is the Golden Beggar?

In the lore of the city of Košice is the story of a beggar, who begged for years. But he used his beggings wisely - saving them and building one of the grandest houses on the main street. The house still stands today, with a Golden Beggar statue on top. A copy of that statue made by a sculptor Arpád Račko is given to the best program from local TV. Two other statues of Golden Beggar made by young artists Vlasta Zakova and Martin Kudla are given to the prize winners in the category of production company and young author at the IFoLT.

Other awards:

  • a PRIZE given by the Journalists‘ Association of Serbia „Zora“
  • a PRIZE of the Slovak Council for Broadcasting and Retransmission for the Best Slovak Film
  • a PRIZE of the TV Festival Press Vitez
  • a PRIZE from the Fogelsong Family Foundation of the USA

In addition, there will be several programs selected as HONORABLE MENTIONS by the jury and announced as well on Saturday night.

Panel Discussions

Panel 1: 

Terrorism, War and Other Conflicts – Existential Threat for Journalism

Growth of terrorism, emerging wars and other conflicts, as well as the resurfacing of extremist forces raise the questions of the role and position of media and journalists which, embodying freedom of speech and other fundamental freedoms and rights principles and being the bearers of democratic values, often become the targets of attacks themselves. At the 2016 International Festival of Local Televisions, the role of journalism in this new situation will be analysed and discussed, with the aim of finding some conclusions and providing some guidance for journalists working in these difficult times.


Refugee and Migrant Crisis Through the Eyes of Media

V4 countries (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia) have strictly rejected the EU’s refugee redistribution mechanism, justifying this attitude by the need to protect their respective countries from radical Islamists infiltrated among the refugees and economic migrants. The countries which have borne the biggest part of the refugee burden have seen this as the lack of solidarity. Different approaches and the crisis of trust can lead to an even deeper division of Europe and even the collapse of Schengen Area, resulting in multiple negative political, economic and security consequences. The Festival aspires to focus on the role of media not only with regard to informing on the refugee drama but also with respect to the atmosphere and attitudes of the public. Particular attention will be paid to the questions of media ethics when it comes to this issue.



Terrorism and War Conflicts – Free Media vs. Propaganda

Following the abovementioned panel, this workshop will particularly focus on whether the media that face these troubled situations live by the ethical norms and professional standards and when they become a part of propaganda themselves. Can we tell where the dividing line is? Can media resist manipulation attempts and lies that come with the conspiracy theories? Is it possible to prevent the spreading of extremist ideologies and the zillions of lies circulating in the virtual space?


V4 in European and Central-European Context

25 years after its establishment, the V4 group consisting of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia represents a stabilization element in Central European context and a strong voice within the EU. Main priorities of Visegrad cooperation such as the Eastern Partnership, energy security and other questions, as well as the current refugee crisis issues will be introduced to the workshop participants. We will make the most of the presence of media from V4 countries to establish a platform for creative cooperation and cross-cultural projects implementation, as well as for the strengthening of identity of the V4 countries’ citizens.    



Program Fair

Within the framework of this workshop, we will welcome the representatives of organisations that support audiovisual works and offer cooperation in their realisation. They will present mainly the possibilities for the execution of their funds. Producers of audiovisual programmes will also speak on the topic of funding – where to look for funds, what are the current hot topics, what are the decisive factors for the success (or its lack) of a film, etc. Distribution companies and TV buyers will also be invited to join the discussion. The objective of this workshop is to give the authors practical information, to get experience from the film market over to them and to describe its functioning as well as the newest trends. Representatives of the Audiovisual Fund, STV, Media Desk, ČT and the Ministry of Culture will all be invited to join the discussion. The orgranisers also plan to approach companies like AVEK – Finland, Vienna Film Fund - Austria, or Media Trainning -  Belgium, and others.

Košice International Film Festival (KIFF)

A film-projection series called “Europe on Screen / Košice International Film Festival”, which takes place at several Košice cinemas, includes films that have won prizes at the Festival, along with films from other European countries. These films are not part of the competition and are open to the general public. Tickets are free.

“Europe on Screen” has in fact become a separate film festival. Its specialty is high-quality works of independent European television stations, of the continent’s young and independent producers and production companies. All these producers have a special vision for their work, and most derive their themes from the places they live and work. As a result, collectively, these films present a unique, ground-level view of what is happening in Europe.

As the number and range of films in this series has increased, so has the work of the organisers and of course the funds required. But this expansion of scope is essentially organic, having grown from the original concept of the festival, which was to concentrate on a little-appreciated portion of the media space.

The Košice International Film Festival (hereinafter referred to as KIFF) will be a truly international film festival. However, it will differ markedly from the existing film festivals in Slovakia, IFF Bratislava, Art Film Fest International Film Festival and Cinematik Piešťany.

The main reason for the difference is that its guiding principle will be the development of the film industry in Central and Eastern Europe. Competition in the KIFF will be limited to entries from this region. Films from outside the region will be screened noncompetitively. This gives the festival a geopolitical agenda. In addition to the competitive and non-competitive screenings, a mission of the KIFF is to promote cooperation among filmmakers as it is appropriate.

The countries involved here are Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Russia, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

Essence of Košice

The festival event called "Essence of Kosice" is conceived as a cultural contribution by and for Kosice citizens and guests. The festival offers not only the usual cultural stalls, but also in non-traditional spaces such as courtyards, streets, parks, museums, galleries. In 2015, the special aim is to promote the cultures of Košice's Self-governing Region and that of the Transcarpathian Region. Along with other cultural events during the festival, organisers will create a unique multicultural event, designed to evoke the atmosphere of a living culture, which we would like to retain in the future.