Assignment One (Radio Show)
Pre-production is integral in the world of radio, whether it be local stations like Radio City 96.7 to the internationally renowned BBC Radio One, whose listening audience reaches millions each day. Planning ahead makes things easier for everyone involved, which in turn benefits the overall show in terms of efficiency and quality.
If we take local radio as an example to explore key pre-production techniques the team would use on a day-to-day basis, it will be clear what things are needed to be planned ahead of going on air.
From 6am to 10am Gavin Matthews hosts the breakfast show on Chester’s Dee 106.3. In order to reach all their listeners, a studio with microphones, trained staff, presenters and other radio equipment is needed to broadcast the show. With these basic requirements, the team can focus on content; with a precise schedule, items need to slot into segments throughout the production that fill the allotted time. A major contributor to any commercial radio station is the songs, adverts and jingles played. These can be picked and pre-programmed before the actual show starts, allowing the transition between Gavin and his team talking live, and a song, for example, seem fluid, effortless and smooth.
To generate ideas, mind-mapping between the presenters and staff working behind the scenes can be very useful. This is true when you consider the section of the show dedicated to the city itself that’s topical and current to its listeners. As part of discussing and writing things down to bring up in the show, background information must be carried out to see whats happening in Chester and make sure that it’s relevant and appealing, this can be done by seeing what people are talking about at the moment or by sending reporters to locations of interest; whether it be Chester Races or perhaps Chester FC’s football ground if it were sporting related for example. From all this, a script can be formulated which would also incorporate the guests which they have alongside them, (Stephen Wunkie from Chester City Management and Mike Green from The Chester Chronicle.) As part of that script, possible questions regarding these matters could be put towards the pair. What’s also vital is ensuring guests will be punctual and attend. This is done by good communication and smart logistics to and from where the guest will be travelling from. On Mondays, Mark Lampkin from Lampkin & Co. Accident solicitors takes calls from the public over questions they want to ask. People around Chester can get in touch to the station in a number of ways; on social media websites, e-mail and telephone. Listener interaction makes up a huge part of the overall show, whether it be competitions like trying to guess a mystery voice to be able to win a chance to go ten-pin bowling or being a part of the themed days that happen on most weekday mornings. For example, Fridays give one lucky person and their friends a ‘cool ride to school’ in a special Dee 106.3 marked car. Although the listener whose taking part in the slot can’t be planned, a guideline can be put in place to ask those on the line simple questions before they speak to the team live on the air, outlining basic information to use as part of the opening introduction- this would be even more important if the team needed to physically get to them, as would be the case in chaffering children from where they live to their school.
Whether it be the news, weather, traffic updates or general banter between the team, every aspect needs to be planned and considered so that people in the Chester area start their day with Dee 106.3.
Link to Chester’s Dee 106.3 Click here