AFTRS is searching for the next generation of screen storytellers

Sabine Brix

If you’re wondering whether to take up a Masters in Screen Studies, an AFTRS Taster session could be just the thing to whet your appetite.
AFTRS is searching for the next generation of screen storytellers

Image: Supplied.

Returning to study can often be a daunting task, but luckily the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) is now offering Taster sessions that give future storytellers an opportunity to experience what AFTRS is all about.

These sessions will take place in Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth in July and August, and during the School’s Annual Open Day and Postgraduate Information Evening in Sydney in August. 

The Taster sessions will be held for AFTRS The Master of Arts Screen, which includes 10 disciplines: Animation, Cinematography, Directing, Documentary, Editing, Music, Producing, Production Design, Screenwriting and Sound, and the Master of Arts Screen Business & Leadership.  

Nell Greenwood, Head of Programs at AFTRS, says the national film school  is keen to draw people from all over Australia.

‘We’re trying to find the most talented people out there and bring them into the Masters programs so they develop the skills and the capacity to be the next generation of great Australian storytellers,’ Greenwood said. 
‘There’s a hesitancy for people to tell the stories that are meaningful to them,’ she admits. ‘I think people have a nervousness around what is required and this sense of, “Is my story of any interest? Do I have the right to tell my story?”

‘One of the things we emphasise at AFTRS is for our students to discover and mine their artistic point of view, or creative point of view,’ Greenwood added.


Learning how to tell authentic stories is at the centre of what the Masters programs at AFTRS are all about.

‘We see the Masters as a career accelerator where students are really plugging into industry,’ Greenwood said. ‘So we really do try and promote the idea that apart from the skills that they’ll get in terms of understanding their creative point of view, there’s the privilege of industry professionals giving you that really close one-on-one mentorship.

‘Our Taster sessions are about inviting people in to meet our fantastic heads of department who are high-level industry experts. The sessions engage in that “masters philosophy” of being able to drill down into deep skills, but also to practice those skills around creative dexterity and being able to be a bit more agile and nimble.’

Image: Supplied.

Greenwood said filmmakers who are considering going back to studying are sometimes concerned about taking two years out of their career to do so, but explained studying a Masters at AFTRS isn't so much about taking 'time out' because the institute is so uniquely aligned to the screen industry.

‘Our heads of department, who teach the programs, are all industry professionals and often take time out from their teaching to help their students,' she said. 'We see the course more as a career accelerator – that throughout those two years, students are plugging into industry, and all the production cycles tend to be aligned to industry. 

‘We also have industry mentorships and there’s a four-week industry placement in the second year. We really do try to keep our graduates plugged into industry and the course finishes in a big showcase where we promote the work to industry and we have a series of sessions where we introduce them to agencies, production agencies, producers and guilds.’ 

Image: Supplied.

Explore AFTRS at Open Day

If you want to experience a Masters Taster and also see the AFTRS facilities in action – its state-of-the-art film, television and radio studios as well as editing suites  –  don’t miss the School’s annual AFTRS Open Day, held on Saturday 11 August. 

You’ll also get the chance to meet all AFTRS Heads of Department and get tips and advice on your application. 

AFTRS Masters Taster Session Dates
Melbourne, 14 July; Brisbane, 23 July; Adelaide, 27-28 July; Perth, 24 August; Liverpool 16 August; Sydney 29 August.  
AFTRS taster sessions vary from state to state and include workshops and panel discussions, to give those interested a sense of what to expect from both Masters courses.
Attendance Free. Register here > 

AFTRS Open Day
Saturday 11 August 2018, 10am - 3.30pm
Australian Film Television and Radio School, The Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park, NSW 2021
Attendance Free. Register here >

About the author

Sabine is a writer, editor, podcaster and electronic musician with a specific interest in personal storytelling that captures the essence of why people create. She was the former Online Content Producer at Archer Magazine and editor of the LGBTI website: Gay News Network.

Her music has appeared on the SBS series Starting From Now, and she has forthcoming sound art work airing on BBC4 radio. She also produces the ‘80s music podcast Neon Mullet.

Follow Sabine on Twitter @sabinebrix