12 winning entries at Chinese radio scriptwriting contest

First-place winners (from left) Clarabelle Chiew, Zhang Weichen and Xu Geyang from CHIJ St Joseph's Convent. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO
There were 361 entries submitted by more than 900 students from over 60 educational institutions this year. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - One winning script at this year's Chinese Radio Drama Script Writing Competition was about a man who gets his wish to live forever but is unable to die later on.

Another involved an artificial intelligence (AI) device that knows a man inside out.

All in, there were 361 entries submitted by more than 900 students from over 60 educational institutions this year.

Second-place winners and sisters Chen Hou Chen and Chen Hou En, both 17, from Hwa Chong Institution (Junior College Section), spoke about the inspiration behind their story Master Of The House, which details a man's relationship with his AI device.

Hou Chen said: "We have an AI device at home, and the story was inspired by the funny misunderstandings the AI has from our interactions with it."

The competition, which has been held each year since 2014, was organised by the Committee to Promote Chinese Language Learning (CPCLL) and SPH Radio's Chinese-language station UFM100.3.

It aims to promote the daily use of Chinese language among students in a fun and interactive way, and develop their interest in radio drama and production.

Seven Outstanding Script Awards and five Creative Script Awards were given to a total of 29 winners from 10 schools this year at a ceremony on Friday (June 24) at the SPH auditorium in Toa Payoh.

In a virtual address, guest of honour Gan Siow Huang, who is Minister of State for Education and chairman of CPCLL, said there were many unique entries.

She said: "This year's entries reflected a lot of the common hopes, positive aspirations we have as we walk out of the shadow of the pandemic."

First-prize winners Zhang Weichen, 16, Xu Geyang and Clarabelle Chiew, both 15, from CHIJ St Joseph's Convent, spoke about the challenges in writing for radio.

Weichen said: "Characterisation is very difficult as you cannot use facial expressions to convey emotions, so the adjectives and tone used play an important role in expressing strong emotions."

Ms Gan said: "Radio drama gives us more room for imagination. This is the charm of radio drama, and we are leveraging its strengths to promote the use and the love of learning Chinese."

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