Finalists Announced For The 34th Annual Commercial Radio Awards

Finalists Announced For The 34th Annual Commercial Radio Awards
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine

Finalists are announced today for the 34th Australian Commercial Radio & Audio (ACRA) Awards, with winners to be revealed in a red-carpet, radio-star studded extravaganza at the ICC in Sydney on 14 October.

Australia’s top radio personalities are vying for the coveted Best Team on Air Award. The 2022 Hall of Fame Winners Kyle Sandilands and Jackie Henderson (The Kyle and Jackie O Show, KIIS 1065, Sydney) are in the running to win for a possible ninth time for the Metro award; against perennially popular Jonesy & Amanda (Brendan Jones and Amanda Keller, WSFM, Sydney),  Perth breakfast team Nathan, Nat & Shaun (Nathan Morris, Natalie Locke and Shaun McManus, Nova 93.7 Perth), The Christian O’Connell Show (The Christian O’Connell Show GOLD104.3 Melbourne), with Ricki-Lee Coulter nominated for the first time as part of the Ricki-Lee, Tim & Joel team (alongside Tim Blackwell and Joel Creasey, Nova Network).

The new Individual Talent of the Year Award has been inundated with entries from across the nation. The Metro 2023 finalists for the Award, which is awarded to an individual (who may be part of a team) who demonstrate a strong rapport with an audience, are: Christian O’Connell (GOLD104.3 Melbourne), Ryan “Fitzy” Fitzgerald (Nova 96.9 Sydney), Ray Hadley (2GB Sydney), Jase Hawkins (KIIS 101.1 Melbourne), Jackie Henderson (KIIS 1065 Sydney), “Ugly” Phil O’Neil (WSFM Sydney) and Kyle Sandilands (KIIS 1065 Sydney).

Winner of the 2022 ACRA for Best Newcomer On-Air, 4BC Brisbane’s Sofie Formica has been nominated for Best Talk Presenter (Metro), alongside Ben Fordham, Ray Hadley and John Stanley from 2GB Sydney and Neil Mitchell and Tom Elliott from 3AW Melbourne.

3AW Melbourne; GOLD104.3 Melbourne; KIIS 1065 Sydney; Nova 93.7 Perth; and The Fox, Melbourne, are battling it out for the inaugural Station of the Year Award (Metro), which recognises the station that exemplifies the best in innovation and taking creative risks, while holding high levels of support for listeners.

Non-metro contenders are: 90.9 Sea FM, Gold Coast; River 949, Ipswich, Mix 106.3, Canberra; and Star 104.5 Central Coast.

The Best Networked Show Award finalists for the 2023 ACRAS are: Jonesy & Amanda (Brendan Jones and Amanda Keller, WSFM, ARN), The Kyle and Jackie O Show Hour of Power, (Kyle Sandilands and Jackie Henderson, KIIS Network, ARN), Ricki-Lee, Tim & Joel (Ricki-Lee Coulter, Tim Blackwell and Joel Creasey, Nova Network, NOVA Entertainment), Rush Hour QLD (Elliott Lovejoy and Annabelle Brett, Triple M Rush Hour QLD, SCA), Rush Hour with JB & Billy (James Brayshaw and Billy Brownless, Triple M, VIC, SCA) and Will & Woody (Will McMahon and Woody Whitelaw, KIIS Network, ARN).

Commercial radio’s passion to support Australian music and artists will be recognised with the announcement of the winner of the “Gudinski”, or the Australian Music Champion Award. Tim Blackwell (Nova Network), K-Sera (CADA/2ONE, Katoomba), Triple M’s Homegrown with Matty O (Matthew O’Gorman, Julia Di Gregorio, Chris Holland, Kalun Townsend, Triple M Melbourne, SCA) and The Maddy Rowe Aus Music Show (Jodie Williams and Maddy Rowe, Nova Network), are vying for the award, named in honour of the late Mushroom Records founder Michael Gudinski.

Two new podcast awards, Podcast of the Year and Podcast Host, have been added to a category that was only introduced in 2022 to the ACRA Awards, signifying the strong growth in podcast listening and a passion for Australian-made content.

Podcast of the Year Award finalists are: Concealed with Art Simone (iHeart Melbourne,  ARN) Hamish & Andy (LiSTNR, Melbourne, SCA), She’s On The Money (iHeart Melbourne, ARN), Stories of Origin (9Podcasts, Sydney, Nine Radio), The Children in The Pictures (LiSTNR, Sydney/Melbourne, SCA), The Space (Nova Podcasts, NOVA Entertainment) and You Don’ t Know Me (LiSTNR, Sydney, SCA).

Podcast Host of the Year Award finalists are: Abbie Chatfield (It’s A Lot, LiSTNR Sydney, SCA), Casey Donovan (The Space, Nova Podcasts, NOVA Entertainment), Phil “Gus” Gould (Six Tackles with Gus, 9Podcasts, Sydney, Nine Radio) Tanya Hennessy (Hennessy’s Hotline, Nova Podcasts, NOVA Entertainment) and Art Simone (Concealed with Art Simone, iHeart Melbourne, ARN).

Ford Ennals, CEO of ACRA Award organiser Commercial Radio & Audio, said that the record number of nominations received in 2023, and the broad mix of finalists across metro, provincial and country stations, recognises the outstanding talent the goes to making the shows and content Australians trust and love, across news, talk, sport, music and entertainment.

“Congratulations to all the finalists. You’ve been acknowledged by your peers as being the best and the brightest in a thriving and creative commercial radio and audio industry.

“There are more female finalists this year than for any other ACRA Awards. Fifteen of the 16 finalists for Best New Talent on Air Award (Metro) and over 40 per cent of finalists for the new Individual Talent of the Year Award category are women, including five out of the six provincial category finalists,” Ford said.

The inaugural ACRA Diversity and Inclusion Award acknowledges the company which has made the most significant advancement in supporting DEIB (Diversity, Inclusion, Equity and Belonging) and champions the advancement of diverse and marginalised groups within their organisation.

Finalists for the award are: Internship Program (Nine Radio), Our Pride (Triple M, Sydney), People Experience (Nova Entertainment, National) and the People and Culture Team (SCA, Sydney).

Over 1200 entries were received from across Australia for this year’s awards, up 15 per cent from 2022, with a broad mix of finalists from metro, provincial and country Australia. The winners are peer judged by industry members. The 2023 ACRA Awards have introduced independent judges for each category who will also, in the case of a tie, be the arbiter.

“The 34th ACRA Awards will celebrate 100 years of commercial radio in Australia. And while we honour a century of music, news, entertainment and connection, we crown those who are ensuring commercial radio’s continued vibrancy and relevance across Australia,” Ford said.

Tickets for the ACRA Awards, in Sydney on Saturday 14 October, go on sale 4 September.

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34th Annual Commercial Radio Awards

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