The One Show

The One Show is the world's most prestigious award show in advertising and design. For over 50 years, the Gold Pencil has been regarded as one of the top prizes in the creative industry. The One Show has a rich legacy of honoring some of the most groundbreaking ideas, created by some of the most remarkable minds in creativity.

2023 One Show - Moving Image Craft & Production

The Reluctant Shanty

Agency BMF / Sydney + FINCH / Sydney + Atticus / Sydney

Client UNHCR



Annual ID


About the Work

The Reluctant Shanty is the first shanty written from the experiences of former refugees, who’ve embarked on dangerous journeys by sea and survived to tell their story. For the director, successfully street-casting this piece meant communicating the true refugee experience in its totality – not just its darkness and difficulty, but its vibrancy and strength as well. Without a sense of hope, the director felt that the spot would deny the humanity of its subjects by reducing them to one-dimensional victims; stripped of their sense of agency. Casting real refugees was vital, and the director prioritised finding non-actors who are strong for who they are, not just for what they went through. It was a potent casting choice, but it also demanded ethical consideration. Great care was taken in pre-production to work through the sensitivities of each refugee, ensuring that the experience was empowering rather than traumatic. On set, this meant placing personally significant objects near the camera; reminders for the performers of great hardship, but also hope and promise. As a result, the casting draws you into the refugees’ reality; we see these people for who they are, not just the situation they are in. Singing to camera always feels heightened, so great emphasis was placed on emotionally engaging each performer’s strength and resilience.

2023 Awards

Total Points: 3




BMF / Sydney

Production Company

Finch / Sydney

Music / Sound Production Company

Rumble Studios / Sydney

Post Production Company

Atticus / Sydney

Art Director

Jack Robertson


Robert Boddington

Chief Creative Officer

Alex Derwin

Creative Director

Douglas Hamilton


Kyra Bartley

Director of Photography

James Brown

Executive Producer

Loren Bradley


David Collins

Account Director

Rebekah O'Grady

Agency Producer

Jessica Vella

Chief Executive Officer

Stephen McArdle

Chief strategy Officer

Christina Aventi

Head of Art & Design

Lincoln Grice

Head of TV

Jenny Lee-Archer

Managing director

Corey Esse

Post producer

Kani Saib

Production Designer/Art Director

Janai Anselmi

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