BGM, Sinking Ship among YMA Awards of Excellence winners

The annual celebration of Canadian children's and youth media also honoured Lopii Productions and Headspinner's Michelle Melanson Cuperus for their achievements in the industry.

Projects from BGM and Sinking Ship Entertainment are among the winners from the Youth Media Alliance’s 2021 Awards of Excellence.

Announced virtually from the Globe and Mail Centre yesterday (May 26), the annual awards ceremony lauded Canadian children’s and youth media and was hosted by TVOKids host Kara Harun and actor and writer Jadiel Dowlin.

Sinking Ship series Endlings (Hulu, CBC) and Dino Dana (TVOKids, Amazon Prime) each won in the scripted categories, with Endlings winning Best Program, Live Action Scripted, Ages 6-9, and Dino Dana earning Best Program, Live Action Scripted, Preschool.

BGM’s TVOKids series were awarded in unscripted, with Backyard Beats (pictured) winning Best Program, Live Action Non-Scripted, Ages 6-9 and It’s My Party! Winning Best Program, Live Action Non-Scripted, Ages 9+.

Écho Média’s CBC Gem series About Sex rounded out the live action awards, winning Best Program, Live Action Scripted, Ages 9+.

On the animation side, 9 Story Media Group and Brown Bag Films series Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum (PBS Kids) won Best Program, Animation, Preschool and Atomic Cartoons and WGBH series Molly of Denali (CBC, PBS) won Best Program, Animation, Ages 6-9 and 9+.

Shaftesbury’s YouTube series STEAM Stars was among the short form content winners, earning Best Program, Short Form Content, Ages 9+; Imagine Create Media’s Space Kids (TVOKids) won Best Program, Short Form Content, Ages 6-9, while Lopii Productions’ 6 Seis Cumbia for Sesame Street (Treehouse, PBS Kids, HBO Max) won Best Program, Short Form Content, Preschool.

Lopii Productions also earned the Emerging Talent Award, given to founders Rennata and Georgina Lopez, identical twin sisters who created the prodco in 2018 after working as freelance producers. Lopii has produced My Home, My Life! and pandemic-era series My Stay-at-Home Diary!, which shows children’s experience of the pandemic around the world. The Emerging Talent Award is given to professionals who are rising stars in children’s media.

Headspinner president and co-founder Michelle Melanson Cuperus won the Outstanding Achievement Award, given to a professional with a distinguished career in children’s and youth media production. Melanson Cuperus is an Emmy and BAFTA nominee with more than 30 year of experience in media production. She is also the founder of the non-profit organization Women Drawn Together, which mentors women in the animation industry.

Amelia Parker and The Parker Andersons star Millie Davis won the Outstanding Youth Performer Award. Davis has been a performer since the age of four, starring in series such as Odd Squad and Esme & Roy.

Rounding out the winners is CBC Kids, which won Best Gaming or Interactive Experience, All Age Groups for CBC Kids News and Best Podcast for The Story Store (Bee the Tea).