Tharik Hussain, the British Bangladeshi journalist and broadcaster, has been shortlisted for a second prestigious global radio award. His debut documentary, America’s Mosques: a story of integration, produced for the BBC World Service was declared the “World’s Best Religious program” at the New York Festival’s (NYF) Radio Programs Awards in June. Now it has been shortlisted for another gong at the prestigious Association for International Broadcasters Awards on 2nd November, alongside films from some of the world’s leading broadcasters, including CNN, Aljazeera, PBS and Channel 4.
On hearing that the shortlisting had been confirmed, Hussain said, “When we made this documentary, the most we had hoped for was that we would do the subject justice, and there might be some positive feedback. Not in my wildest dreams did I imagine it would win an award – let alone be considered for two awards.”
The 37-year-old, originally from the Sylhet district of Bangladesh, recorded a documentary which tells the journey of how Islam came to the USA. During his travels Hussain spent time with the US-Bangladeshi community.
America’s Mosques is up against five other nominees in AIB’s Radio Creative Feature Award. The category rewards programmes for their “creative use of the medium with superb storytelling”, something Hussain believes is down to the amazing work of his production team, Overtone Productions.
“My producers gave me such confidence and had excellent ideas about what would work and how best to blend this for audio. They made the documentary what it is,” said Hussain.
This second nomination is all the more sweeter for the busy father of two, as the awards ceremony will be in London, his home city. “I couldn’t go to the NYF awards ceremony in New York for a number of personal reasons, and so this time it will be that little bit more special as the AIBs take place here.”
Tharik Hussain is a freelance travel writer, journalist and broadcaster who specialises in the Muslim stories of the West. He has just returned from a summer road trip with his family which took him across the Balkans, exploring the rich Islamic history of nations such as Bosnia, Kosovo and Albania. He is now working on turning those adventures into a book about the journey.