International Audio Arts Festival

April 4th-7th 2019

Kilfinane, Co. Limerick, Ireland




The HearSay Prize 2021

What we are looking for - What to Enter

Fresh for 2021 - There are 8 new special category awards (see below) to inspire you and inspire us!


Self-contained audio pieces, between 2 - 7 minutes in duration. Seven minues is the maximum and piece of longer duration should not be entered. Remember if it is for the "Celebrate" Stream for pre-existing work, then it can be recut.  


Entries can take any form - documentary, sound art, audio fiction, location report, field recording,   sound poem etc. etc.


This year we're delighted to invite entries again from around the world. Entries in any language are welcome and we have a special award to recognise the best entry to each stream in a language other than English.


We're looking for the most adventurous, freshest voices in audio from all genres and backgrounds, sound artists to documentary producers, filmmakers to radio dramatists, veterans and newcomers. We're looking for creative collaborations and singular voices.


We welcome entries from those who are starting out and students and also from experienced producers and artists. We've got special category awards which encourage people from different disciplines and different levels of experience to enter. We're driven by a commitment to sound and its ability to move, inspire, challenge and intrigue us.


There’s very little not allowed  – It’s not a song contest so songs or straight up musical tracks are unlikely to succeed but the use of music or song is not excluded. Field recordings, interviews, drama, scripts, stories, found sounds, original music, actuality - feel free to use every sound at your disposal -  make every moment count.

Each piece entered in the CREATE stream should be a Brand NEW piece of work created specifically for or uniquely entered in the HearSay Prize 2021.


Entries to CREATE must not have been broadcast or otherwise widely publicly heard. Extracts from other work belong in the Celebrate Stream.

CREATE Stream Awards

CELEBRATE Stream Awards

Each piece entered in the CELEBRATE stream can have been broadcast, podcast, exhibited or otherwise publicly made available.


Entries to Celebrate DO NOT have to be entered in their original broadcast form, they may  be reworked, extracted, or reimagined for entry into this competition. If it's already perfect and below seven minutes in length, you can submit it just the way it is!

Special Category Awards

All Entries to the CREATE and CELEBRATE Streams are eligible to enter the appropriate Special Category Awards. These awards honour the diversity of the creative audio world, to celebrate creativity and skill and to encourage new talent.

All Entries to the CELEBRATE Stream are eligible for the HearSay Prize 2021 Gold CELEBRATE Overall Award.


Entries in a language other than English are eligible for the 2021 CELEBRATE GanBéarla Award.

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All Entries to the CREATE Streams are eligible for the HearSay Prize 2021 CREATE Gold Overall Award.


Entries in a language other than English are eligible for the 2021 CREATE GanBéarla Award.

Special Category Awards – CELEBRATE & CREATE


There will be an award for the following categories for both CELEBRATE & CREATE:


HearSay HEARD Award – Audio that foregrounds under-represented experiences, perspectives, and voices – whether quietly intimate, or beautifully boisterous!


HearSay FEARLESS  Award  – Fictional or Factual Audio that tears up the unwritten rule book on treatment, sound design, content, edit, or form to simply demand to be listened to on its own terms



Special Category Awards – CREATE ONLY


Only Entries to the CREATE Stream are also eligible for the following special category awards:


HearSay RISING Award - Encouraging audio creativity for those in full time education and/or under 21yrs.


HearSay ZEST Award – audio that is the lemon slice in a refreshing drink on a too hot day – playful, funny, joyful, or surprising.


HearSay PROVOKE Award – deeply personal, or punchy political, abstract or direct – audio that unearths thoughts that unsettle, engage or enrage.


HearSay HUMAN  Award - audio, fictional or true, that forges a connection with lived experience, with our beautiful and sometimes fragile humanity


Hearay ART Award – Sound Art, Radio Art that is on the edge of our senses and understanding – audio that transports, transforms, evokes, immerses, transports.

Closing Date: 

EARLYBIRD 4th January 2021

FINAL 21st January 2021


Shortlisted Creators Notified  

14th April 2021


Winners & Prize Ceremony

14th May 2021


Judges: Find our 2019 Jury here. 

(The 2021 Jury is revealed in May


13 Awards in total


2 Overall Awards

HearSay CREATE Gold Award

(Overall winner - for NEW audio work)


HearSay CELEBRATE Gold Award

(Overall winner - for EXISTING work)


2 Awards for Work in a

Language other than English

HearSay Create Ganbearla Award

HearSay Celebrate Ganbearla Award


1 Award to recognise emerging audio makers (Full-Time Student and/or under age of 21) 

HearSay Rising Award


8 Special Category Awards