Powerhouse Radio Executives Present 2018 Radio Awards

 

New York Festivals International Radio Awards award-winning Grand Jury jury members have selected the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Award winners. Content creators from around the globe will receive trophies for innovative programming at the annual Radio Awards ceremony on June 18th in New York City.

From trophy-winning digital content, podcasts and audio books, live events, dramas and documentaries, breaking news coverage, multi-genre music specials, sound art, and promos from around the globe, the 2018 Radio Awards celebrates the World’s Best Radio Programs.

This year, powerhouse award-winning industry executives will join Radio Awards VP/Executive Director Rose Anderson as they present award segments at the 2018 Radio Awards gala and honor the winning entrants with the stunning Art Deco inspired New York Festivals Trophy.

2018 Presenters include:

  • Mark Travis – New York Philharmonic
  • Jennie Cataldo – BMP Audio
  • Peter Shevlin  – BlokMedia
  • Michelle Parise & Ify Chiwetelu – Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
  • Mindy Thomas – Tinkerkast & SiriusXM
  • Jim Bilodeau – SiriusXM
  • Tim Desmond & Thomas Black – RTE
  • Josh Fouts – Bioneers
  • Albert Leung – Campus/Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Stay tuned to find out who earns the Gold, Silver and Bronze, along with the Grand Award, Broadcaster of the Year, UNDPI Awards and more. And don’t forget to visit the New York Festivals Radio Awards website tomorrow to view the winner’s showcase: http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/

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Open Mic Spotlight: Kankana Lohiyaa

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the selection of the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Award winners which will be announced at the annual Radio Awards ceremony on June 18th in New York City.

2018 Grand Jury member Kankana Lohiyaa is National Music Head for 94.3 MY FM (DB Corps Ltd) India.  With  over 12 years of experience in Radio Programming & Production

Kankana Lohiyaa

(Music & Product). Kankana launched 13 new stations: 9 new stations in Maharashtra, 1 in Rajasthan, 1 in Gujarat and 2 in Punjab. During that time she hired a completely new team, groomed them and raised them to current performances. An award-winning programmer, her ideas have won numerous awards both nationally and internationally. Kankana has a track for creating & executing content ideas for on air programs to enhance listener-ship, new promos for shows and stationality, on air special shows & celebrity management, contests.

New York Festivals: How did you get your start in the radio industry?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Radio happened by design to me as I grew up in a home where radio was always given preference over television, even when the television was the new buzz word.

Entry to radio industry happened to me by chance. I was working with India’s largest CDMA mobile telephone company, handling the customer support. It so happened that during break-time, over a cup of coffee, I was explaining to my colleague the relationship between our brain and music and how in most of us, music taste gets frozen at some point of time.

Not known to me was the fact that the group I worked with, has ventured in to private FM radio business in 2005. Some members of the national launch team heard that conversation and something triggered. The team lead offered me a job as a music manager. I refused without realising. The team came to meet me again the next day and after a lot of their cajoling, I agreed.  The thing is neither did I have any idea of the kind of jobs radio had at that point, nor did I ever realise why they picked me up amongst the entire lot.

To cut a long story short, before I realised, I was a part of the radio team at Jhansi. Being the launch phase, and me being a non-industry person, I picked up every job I was asked to do. From assisting RJs to prepare their shows, to handle the software that run the music log, to ensure that transmission starts in time and all relevant reports are sent back to our Head Office that too in time. It was a challenging time, but somehow the love for radio from a young age propelled me forward to do things others would find not so exciting to do. I guess, I picked up the entire process of launch and running of a radio station there. That was 20/12/2006. Around 12 years hence, I currently enjoy the role of Product Head (a person responsible for looking after the strategies of programming and marketing for the region he or she handles) along with being the part that I love the most, handling the music for all 30 stations of the network I work now.

New York Festivals: What was the turning point in your career?

Kankana Lohiyaa: I am a lawyer by education with a Gold Medal to boot. On a whim I had taken up the summer job at telecom because I couldn’t afford to sit idle. It was more to utilize my time than to think of a career. When the radio team dropped in at our work place to plan for the launch of radio operations. I guess that’s when, however unknowingly, I got sucked in to and assimilated in to the world of radio. Yeah, what an assimilation it has been.

New York Festivals: Did you have a mentor, if so how did they help you achieve your career goals?

Kankana Lohiyaa: I do not believe in mentor-ship but I believe in picking up the best from everyone. However, the biggest influence on my life has been my mother. Being from a small town of Jhansi, where the entire city is considered as a conservative society, she never had an iota of backward thinking. She was bold, daring, an extremely simple yet sorted kind of a personality. She was probably the first judge in that region of a consumer forum. She mentored me in her own way. Teaching the values, the ethics, the trials and tribulations of an independent career woman and most important of all, the basics of humanity. I owe my entire personality and professional career to her teachings which have given me the right fillip whenever I was down and out.

New York Festivals: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Oh, I will go back to the teachings of my mother. She firmly believed in one mantra, that every injury has a positive line. I have seen this happening so many times in my career, to me and to so many others. Sometimes, what you deserve come to you after a lot of hardship but finally, the right ones win.

Another thing taught by her again which I never forget; to make sure that I end my day with no regrets. She meant “don’t die wondering.

New York Festivals: What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen in the industry?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Today, employees are responsible for their own training and career path. If you don’t remain relevant, you will be jettisoned and replaced.

One of the biggest change that I have seen is technology. With social media having become the new norm, things spreads faster than ever.

New York Festivals: Where do you see the industry moving in the next 5 years?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Radio is growing and the entire pie is getting bigger. The accessibility of music has seen tremendous expansion and diversification. While younger listeners opt for technologically advanced methods, traditional methods like radio continue to be strong drivers and carriers of live entertainment. The longevity of this medium is astounding…it has withstood the tests of time…and it will continue to do so.

New York Festivals: What three words describe you as a content creator?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Swim against the tide.

New York Festivals: What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world?

Kankana Lohiyaa:  Core quality is Question. Question every single thing. Every single occurrence. Every single movement. Every single situation.

New York Festivals: What program do you wish you created?

Kankana Lohiyaa: A detective show on radio. I am intrigued by Benedict Cummerbatch’s Sherlock created by BBC. I always think, how it would pan out on radio.

New York Festivals: What creative projects are next for you?

Kankana Lohiyaa: I am working on a new concept of 6 second stories. Smallest communication for an entire story.

New York Festivals: What do you think are the hallmarks of award-winning work?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Consumer Insight, Innovation and Opportunity for the consumer to engage with the content.

New York Festivals: What would be your dream job?

Kankana Lohiyaa: Every day when I wake up, I write down my dream of the night. I feel one of these days I will fulfill them all. Secretly, I want to be a coffee Barista. Don’t laugh….the fragrance of freshly ground coffee beans is my poison and baking cakes is my therapy.

Join NYF on Monday, April 18th in New York City for the 2018 Radio Awards gala. Find out who will take home the Gold, Silver, and Bronze trophies and the prestigious Grand Awards.  For more information, please visit: http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/main.php?p=2,7,15

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Open Mic Spotlight: Juan Pablo Córdoba

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the selection of the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Award winners which will be announced at the annual Radio Awards ceremony on June 18th in New York City.

Juan Pablo Córdoba

 

Grand Jury member Juan Pablo Córdoba, is Productor Artístico for Radio Mitre S.A. the Nº 1 radio station of Argentina. As Artistic Producer he  is responsible not only for writing  promotions, monitoring editing and coordinating airing, he is also director of special reports. Juan Pablo ensures that the highest quality standards in music and jingles are maintained. He studied Social Communication (UBA – University of Buenos Aires) and Multimedia Production (EMBA), and he is a vital part of Radio Mitre since 2004.

New York Festivals: What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen in the industry?

Juan Pablo Córdoba: From the beginning of my career until now the biggest change I’ve seen in the industry was the hybridization of AM (modulated amplitude) and FM (modulated frequency). The immutable structures of the years before 2000 have already been very far away. Today there is a mixture of formats and content between these two ways of doing radio, at least in Argentina: journalistic programs stopped being exclusive to AM radios, as well as the musical programs made the leap from the FM and invaded the traditional ones A.M.

Today we have to live thru another transformation: radios from around the world are leaving their desire to remain for life in the ether and are turning increasingly towards the Internet: posts on social networks and websites, streamings, and of course, the new spoiled child of the media, the podcast or content on demand.

New York Festivals: What three words describe you as a content creator?

Juan Pablo Córdoba: Respectful…Respectful of the product. Respectful to the public. Respectful with co-workers.

New York Festivals: What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world? 

Juan Pablo Córdoba: The responsibility of journalists and all content creators is to pay attention to the pre-truth. The world is getting tired of the post-truth, it is necessary that we, as social communicators, show them also that instance prior to the news, where the human and the fact are, and nothing there is still corrupted.

New York Festivals: What is your favorite program that you created and why?

Juan Pablo Córdoba: They are many. But if I have to choose one, I choose the last one that we have made, and that we have presented in NYF 2018: “The brotherhood of silence – The search of the ARA San Juan”. Precisely because it is a documentary that emphasizes that pre-truth that we talked about previously.

“The brotherhood of silence – The search for the ARA San Juan” is the result of four months of work to show the public an original side of a story that was covered by the whole world, with a fine work of editing, and a careful creation of its narrative structure. It is the testimony of the largest operation in history in the search for a submarine, of which 19 countries were part. It is a reflection of the voices of those who, united in the eternity of the sea, are still looking for an answer.

Find out who will take home the Gold, Silver, and Bronze trophies and the prestigious Grand Awards. Join NYF on Monday, April 18th in New York City for the 2018 Radio Awards gala. For more information, please visit: http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/main.php?p=2,7,15

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Open Mic Spotlight: Valerie Geller

 

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the selection of the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Award winners which will be announced at the annual Radio Awards ceremony on June 18th in New York City.

Valerie Geller

Grand Jury member Valerie Geller,is president of Geller Media International. She works with top broadcasters in radio, TV, internet throughout the world, and has consulted on several award winning documentary films.

As a content and story consultant, trainer and seminar leader, Using proven methods she developed over years of working in 35 countries with over 500 radio and television stations, she coaches and trains on air personalities, programmers, producers and broadcast news journalists to become more Powerful Communicators.

Geller, a former program director (WABC, New York) and News Director (K101, San Francisco) has been training broadcasters since 1991. Her clients in Europe have included LBC, The BBC, Australia’s ABC Sweden’s MTG, Sveriges Radio, SBC, YLE, P-4 Norway, NRK, Danmarks Radio, FM 100, and many many more.

New York Festivals: How did you get your start?

Valerie Geller: I started as a caller to talkback radio shows as a child growing up in Los Angeles. I got hooked and it started a lifelong love affair with radio, broadcasting, and all audio media. That has grown into the podcast space and digital radio as well

New York Festivals: What was the turning point in your career?

Valerie Geller: There wasn’t just one turning point, there  were several. When I worked as a reporter, I  realized you could make a difference in people’s lives through the information you broadcast through powerful storytelling. When I was a news director, I realized you could guide reporters and have them follow and create a larger vision. As a manager and program director at ABC in New York City, I understood that achieving a marriage of information and entertainment through created live content, for us, to succeed, was crucial. And these past years as a trainer of broadcasters and a coach for radio, television, podcasting and documentary films…. pulled it all together. It’s all about storytelling, passion and bringing out the best in people as powerful communicators.

I’ve written five books including the latest www.beyondpowerfulradio.com that have been translated into several languages including French, Hungarian, Bulgarian, Albanian, and more. Each of the books has been a turning point as well.

New York Festivals: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Valerie Geller: When I became a consultant, and begin to work internationally with radio and television, a very wise person advised, “There’s what’s Right, there’s what’s Wrong, and then there is what IS. Try to do what’s right and avoid what is wrong. But if you do not clearly understand and see what it is, and work with that, you will not be successful.”

New York Festivals: Where do you see the industry moving in the next 5 years?  Multi platform is the way forward!

Valerie Geller: Podcasting is the most exciting platform and marries into all others. Broadcasting is for mass audiences but we can narrow cast with podcasts and tell stories that serve niche audiences.

New York Festivals: What three words describe you as a content creator?

Valerie Geller: I am in the “story business” it’s all about powerful storytelling.

New York Festivals: What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world?

Valerie Geller: Tell the truth, make it matter and NEVER be boring!

New York Festivals: What creative projects are next for you?

Valerie Geller: Taylor and Francis and Routledge,  the parent company for Focal Press, have asked me to update the Beyond Powerful Radio book for 2020 publication date. That’s the next thing, Plus continuing to work training and coaching broadcasters at client radio and television stations throughout the world.

New York Festivals: What do you think are the hallmarks of award-winning work?

Valerie Geller: Original voices. Great ideas. Wonderful story telling and execution. Good use of sound. But importantly a great piece of audio has one Hallmark and here it is, the presenter or producer can get you to care about something you didn’t care about and get you to listen, care and stick with it.

New York Festivals: How has podcasting changed the way you create content and are you creating more of this on-demand content?

Valerie Geller: Yes!!!!

New York Festivals: What would be your dream job? 

Valerie Geller: I have it… my dream now is to expand and continue with opportunities to work with and to train any and all talent, producers, broadcast storytellers and all people who tell stories across the world, who wish to learn the methods to help them become more powerful storytellers and to get keep and grow audiences across all platforms.

For more information on the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Program Awards, please visit HERE.  For information or tickets for the 2018 Radio Awards gala taking place on June 18th in New York City, please visit HERE.

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Open Mic Spotlight: Astha Mandiratta

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the 2018 NYF Radio Awards Finalists.

Astha Mandiratta

Grand Jury member, Astha Mandiratta is National Head – Client Solutions for ETV News Network, the largest regional news network of India with 13 regional channels, covering 23 states, and are part of country’s biggest network, Network 18. She is responsible for designing campaigns and events for big clients and branding awareness for the network pan India.

With almost 12 years in media, Astha has served 8 years  working in television anchoring various celebrity talk shows in ETV & Star news and  4 years in radio with 94.3 MY FM – Dainik Bhaskar Group.  She was responsible for programming for Rajasthan and her focus had always been working towards gender sensitivity and her work on various campaigns including BOL & save girl child were recognised on both a local and national level.

New York Festivals: How did you get your start in the radio industry?

Astha Mandiratta: Joining radio was as sudden and unplanned as it could be, I was working with a TV channel as programming head & anchor and being an ardent fan of music; radio was always on my tab. Through my little knowledge about this medium, all I knew was there is one RJ who plays music of his choice and we listen to it,until I actually stepped into this magical medium as the programming head of 94.3 MY FM Jaipur station.

After working for almost 7 years in electronic media, I remember I got a call from their regional head and he asked will you work in radio and I replied that I am an anchor and not an RJ, and that I know nothing about radio. He simply said come and see me in my office. For the first time when I stepped in the office I was surprised to see the number of people working there, full of energy & zeal. I knew this is it. I was thrilled to see how radio callers express their love for their favorite RJ’s and was amazed to see the amount of hard work a team puts in to get a show on air, as being from news channel background, I always thought that radio does not require tenaciousness but as they say Entertainment is a staid business!!!

New York Festivals: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Astha Mandiratta: My Golden rule has always been that be as ravenous as you can when it comes for feedback. Feedback is the starter, main course and dessert of high performance and thus I have always taken advice & feedback from people around and it helps thus I can’t say any one piece but would like to mention a few here.

Fore mostly, live your job as it’s the most beautiful thing when your passion and job comes together.

Secondly Prep, prep and prep . Do as much preparation and research on content as much as you can before putting anything on air & be as simple as you can every time you design any content, do not complex simple things for listeners/viewers.

Lastly differentiate or die, the phrase itself says all.

New York Festivals: What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen in the industry?

Astha Mandiratta: Being one of the most entertaining source for city, radio has now become the solution provider to its clients as well. It has always been  the first choice of music lovers but with the kind of popularity the medium has gained , it has now become an important platform of advertising as well and the kind of response it offers to advertisers; it has become all the more important. This has made some real big investors to enter in this market and thus, expanding it further with more cash flow.

New York Festivals: What three words describe you as a content creator?

Astha Mandiratta: ASTHA, MAD, PASSIONATE.

New York Festivals: What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world?

Astha Mandiratta: It is too big a question to answer, with current scenario journalist’s play a very crucial role, as viewers analyze news through the journalists’ eye. It is important that unbiased news with complete transparency is offered to listeners/viewers. Also as journalists, it’s our responsibility to not to run after “Breakings” but be a little more sensitive and rational towards issues pertaining to society.

New York Festivals: What is your favorite program that you created and why?

Astha Mandiratta: Though all my programs are my favorite as every program has best of my efforts and I really can’t differentiate but still shows on women empowerment are really close to my heart as from the country where I come from, this is a crucial issue. I feel content to the core whenever I make such a show which fights for women rights & child abuse , even if 0.1% of listeners change their opinion it will really make difference to the society and my country as whole and thus my purpose of content creator is solved.

For more information on the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Program Awards or to view the 2018 Finalists please visit HERE.  For information or tickets for the 2018 Radio Awards gala taking place on June 18th in New York City, please visit HERE.

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Open Mic Spotlight: Maddy Fryer

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the 2018 NYF Radio Awards Finalists.

Maddy Fryer

This week, NYF’s Open Mic features 2018 Grand Jury member Maddy Fryer. Maddy has worked for SBS Australia for over 10 years and has been the Executive Producer of SBS PopAsia since 2010. SBS PopAsia is a Digital Radio Station for young multicultural Australians.  Prior to SBS PopAsia, Maddy led the youth team from the program – Alchemy, who in 2008 became Silver Medal Recipients of United Nations Department of Public Information Award – on the Stolen Generation in Australia.

New York Festivals: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Maddy Fryer: I was once told by a mentor to learn everything there is to know about radio. This simple piece of advice has stayed with me and allowed me to see my job with much more clarity. As a consequence I always share this ‘secret’ with new recruits to the industry.

If you are a content creator, it’s always important to know how radio works, why sales do what they do and why management and technical decisions are made.

New York Festivals: Where do you see the industry moving in the next 5 years?

Maddy Fryer: The industry will continue to grow and move with the constant changes in technology. Podcasts will continue to flourish and traditional radio will continue to adapt to suit personal devices and listening habits. Video will not kill the Radio Star.

New York Festivals: What creative projects are next for you?

Maddy Fryer: I am keen to grow radio/audio and video as perfect partners on multiple platforms. My next creative projects will continue to target our audience hangouts online. Your creative content goes nowhere unless you move with your audience.

New York Festivals: Whose work do you admire the most?

Maddy Fryer: I admire those brilliant creatives that provide special listening moments for me as a New York Festivals Radio Awards jury member. Each year I hear so many incredible radio and podcast moments. I still remember some of the award winning stories that I have heard, some never leave you.

For more information on the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Program Awards or to view the 2018 Finalists please visit HERE.  For information or tickets for the 2018 Radio Awards gala taking place on June 18th in New York City, please visit HERE.

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Open Mic Spotlight: Nicky Davis

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the 2018 NYF Radio Awards Finalists.

Nick Davis

This week’s Spotlight interview features Nick Davis, Manager of Program Development for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, where he is responsible for the ongoing development of local programming in radio, television and online.

Nick has worked in radio, television and print for the past 27 years covering everything from current affairs to the arts. He has won many awards for his journalism, including a 2006 Gabriel Award. For the past 17 years he has worked at CBC as a reporter and producer — most notably as Senior Producer for Metro Morning, the number one morning show in Toronto.

New York Festivals: How did you get your start in the radio industry?

Nick Davis: I started in radio quite by accident. I was walking in the food court while in university during freshman orientation week when a man at a table asked me if I wanted to volunteer at the school radio station. I politely declined, but the man continued with his spiel of how great it would be and what an opportunity to express myself. I politely declined again, but the man would not take no for an answer. He eventually wore me down and I agreed to volunteer for CHRY Radio at York University. The accident part was I that I had no intention of going to the orientation fair. I got lost looking for the bookstore.

Needless to say, getting lost help me find my future career.

New York Festivals: What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen in the industry?

Nick Davis: The industry has changed dramatically in the 30 years I have been a journalist. Technology, of course, has been the biggest change. When I started in radio you had to listen to your program of choice at the time it aired on the radio. Now people listen to their audio content when they want and how they want. From on demand content to podcasts there are numerous ways people consume audio content.

New York Festivals: What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world?

Nick Davis: From a technical point of view, journalists are responsible for filing stories on multiple platforms – digital, television, radio and social media. From a practical point of view, journalists are responsible for telling the truth. The same thing they were charged with at the beginning of journalism. And the truth should help people have a better understanding of the world we live.

New York Festivals: How has podcasting changed the way you create content?

Nick Davis: Podcasting has allowed us to create content that is not constricted by the framework of terrestrial radio. Audio stories can be 5 minutes or 50 minutes and we can weave in more elements that help us tell better stories. No need to worry about commercials or news break that sometimes can interrupt the flow of storytelling. Podcasts have also allowed us to reach new and more defined audiences.

New York Festivals: What do you think are the hallmarks of award-winning work?

Nick Davis: Award-winning work is good storytelling that makes you feel something. It makes you angry. It makes you sad. It makes you cry. It makes you happy. It makes you laugh. It makes you think. It makes you self-reflective. It moves you to action. On the course of whatever emotional and intellectual journey the story takes you on, hopefully it`s filled with surprise, wonder and awe.

For more information on the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Program Awards or to view the 2018 Finalists please visit HERE.  For information or tickets for the 2018 Radio Awards gala taking place on June 18th in New York City, please visit HERE.

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Open Mic Spotlight: Tim Zunckel

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members who judge creative entries from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today, their efforts have resulted in the 2018 NYF Radio Awards Finalists.

This week’s Spotlight interview features Tim Zunckel, Programming Consultant for
Connect South Africa. Tim is an award-winning creative programmer, problem solver and lover of audio and storytelling with a variety of experience in the radio, music and audio space. He loves creative ideas and innovation and  is passionate about developing talent. Tim is actively involved in radio training, coaching and consulting in South Africa as well as Africa.

New York Festivals: How did you get your start in the radio industry?

Tim Zunckel

Tim Zunckel: The airwaves in South Africa were democratised in 1994 and there was a wealth of new listening opportunity soon thereafter. My local University was licensed to broadcast and as a school student I fell in love with the ability to listen to people my age talking about things that affected me, playing the music I loved. I was hooked. My friends were hooked. It was literally something that changed our lives, the ability to listen to our own station.

When I went to university I applied and was lucky enough to be selected to work as a student volunteer. It’s a station I spent twelve years with, it launched my career and I am proud to still be associated with them.

New York Festivals: What was the turning point in your career?

Tim Zunckel: At a point I realised I was a radio enthusiast. I enjoyed working in radio but I was treating it like a hobby. It was a full time hobby but I wasn’t taking it seriously. I changed my approach to my on-air work, production, knowledge base and contact network. I started doing my own feedback sessions and kept accurate logs of times, guests, songs and events. Within in six months my game had changed. I was a professional operating at the next level. It was that process that built my foundation to being a radio programmer.

New York Festivals: Did you have a mentor, if so how did they help you achieve your career goals?

Tim Zunckel: No. And that is why I actively try and help anyone who seeks advice, directions and knowledge. In the South African context, empowering young people to become creative professionals is essential to ensuring a new generation of content creators. I work with selected individuals for selected periods of time to help them grow and achieve their career goals. I have been lucky to work with some talented individuals and have used this as a process to learn and engage.

New York Festivals: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Tim Zunckel: Invest in your own career.

Don’t wait for people to help you or give advice. Seek what you are looking for, chase it, ask questions, consider the problem and look for an answer. Be prepared to spend money on investing in equipment, courses, travel and the creative process. Self investing is never wasted.

New York Festivals: What creative projects are next for you?

Tim Zunckel: I work with the team at the University of the Witswatersrand at the the Wits Radio Academy and am the Director of Radio Days Africa. Radio Days Africa is a platform for engagement, debate, learning and connecting. We are currently in the planning phase for our 9th edition of RDA and am excited about being able to contribute to the African radio agenda through this process.

For more information on the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Program Awards or to view the 2018 Finalists please visit HERE.  For information or tickets for the 2018 Radio Awards gala taking place on June 18th in New York City, please visit HERE.

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Open Mic Spotlight: Jon Tjhia

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today.

Grand Jury member, Jon Tjhia is the Wheeler Centre’s Senior Digital Editor. He has worked on the Wheeler Centre’s multimedia, editorial and digital projects since 2010, including #discuss, the short-form multimedia series Housekeeping, and long-form podcast series Better Off Dead and The Messenger, which won several awards.

He’s a co-editor and co-founder of the Australian Audio Guide, and a member of the 2018 New York Festivals Radio Awards Grand Jury.

Jon also produces the Paper Radio literary fiction and creative non-fiction podcast, plays music with Speed Painters and has served on Audiocraft’s 2017 programming committee. In 2016, he was a top-ten finalist in Radiotopia’s Podquest competition.
Better Off Dead was named Finalist at New York Festivals Radio Awards 2016.

Michael Green (left), Behind the Wire and Jon Tjhia (right) of the Wheeler Centre accepting the 2017 NYF Grand Award.

The Messenger was awarded the Grand Trophy and two Gold Medals at New York Festivals Radio Awards 2017; the 2017 UNAA Media Award for Best Radio Documentary; the 2017 Walkley Award for Radio/Audio Feature; and (with Behind the Wire’s They Cannot Take the Sky), the 2017 Australian Human Rights Commission Media Award. It was also a finalist at the 2017 Quill Awards.

New York Festivals: How did you get your start in the radio industry?

Jon Tjhia: I had always been interested in live radio, and dabbled in it (as many particularly smitten music fans do here in Australia), but I had never really considered producing as something I was especially invested in. That changed when I got a job working at the ABC – Australia’s national broadcaster – as a web developer and digital producer. I was supporting broadcasters whose work went out across the region in several different languages. Alongside all the work around rebroadcast and transmitter licenses that my colleagues were doing, my team was grappling with this new thing called podcasting. I loved how open-ended that was back then; there were barely any established conventions, so you got to really decide how you were going to present your material in a feed, and question why.

Eventually, I started producing interviews with musicians from the Pacific Islands for a cross-platform competition we were running, and slowly began applying my music production skills to making packages that would sometimes find their way onto the radio.

New York Festivals: What was the turning point in your career?

Jon Tjhia: It was starting Paper Radio in 2010. It really wasn’t that long ago, and it feels ridiculous to think that starting a podcast was novel so recently, but it changed a lot for me.

Making creative and business decisions, answering to and for yourselves … I developed a taste for independence that I get really restless without. But the main reason it was a turning point for me was because of how much I had to learn all at once in order to keep it going, and to correct mistakes I’d made earlier. I can’t stress how stupid I was about so many things to do with radio making, and in so many ways, I still am. I think you’re lucky if your life puts you in a position where you really have no choice but to learn – a lot, and as quickly as you can.

New York  Festivals: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Jon Tjhia: I don’t think any one individual gave me this advice – it was rather absorbed through artists of various persuasions over many years – but the thought that keeps me going is that there are no rules. I know it sounds like a bumper sticker or a souvenir hat slogan, but it’s so important; almost all the rules we live and die by are made up by people. Often, yes, for good reasons. Sometimes not. I think when you’re making creative work, or work that really needs to connect with its audience in a particular way, you owe it to your craft to at least question every rule you meet. That’s about being deliberate.

New York Festivals: What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world?

Jon Tjhia: I think journalists have always – and should always – have a responsibility to veracity. To me, that’s the fundamental, definitional quality of journalism. (If you don’t, that’s fine! Write your columns, feature articles, scripts … claim whatever the correct title of your profession is. No big deal!) Discern the question, or the questionable thing, and scratch at it. Do they have a responsibility to be entertaining? No! I really don’t think so. If they don’t connect properly to their audiences, though, that’s on editors. Editors really, really matter. Aaaand scene.

New York Festivals: What program do you wish you created?

Jon Tjhia: There are so many things I wish I had made, or at least had a really good peek under the hood of! Some things I keep coming back to include ‘Moving Homes’ by Thomas Meadowcroft (Soundproof), some of those hilarious radio pieces by Chris Morris and Armando Iannucci, and this thing called ‘Between Empathy and Sympathy is Time (Apartheid)’ by artist Terre Thaemlitz. The latter isn’t a radio feature (it’s part of an album and a live multimedia show), but that often makes me wonder what the difference is – why wouldn’t it be? But anyway, there are actually so many producers and artists I’m envious of that it’s sometimes paralyzing. Listeners are totally spoiled for choice.

Lovebomb LP featuring “Between Empathy and Sympathy is Time (Apartheid)” by artist Terre Thaemlitz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New York Festivals: What do you think are the hallmarks of award-winning work?

Jon Tjhia: I think there is a perception that award-winning work is often Serious and Worthy, and I think that does often play out. Certainly, there’s incredible value in work that reveals a hidden something, an untold other thing, and it should be recognised. There is work with great implication, or that takes real focus, dedication, rigor and skill. At the same time, I’m most excited by work that delivers an experience that really respects its listeners and brings them somewhere new; that animates them. I’m happiest when I hear stuff that, by design or by accident, feels original and confident and supported by its own internal logic. Some call it personality.

For more information on New York Festivals Radio Awards, please visit:http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/ and for information on the 2018 NYF Radio Awards Gala, please visit: http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/main.php?p=2,7,15

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Open Mic Spotlight: Kaushik Dutta

NYF’s Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with prominent Grand Jury members from around the globe, each Spotlight interview shares the insights of content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

New York Festivals International Radio Awards jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative content on radio today.

Kaushik Dutta

2018 Grand Jury member, Kaushik Dutta is a consultant for Radio City 91.1 FM India. He  brings over 10 years of radio industry experience to the jury panel. Kaushik began his radio career as a radio jockey for Radio Mirchi in 2008. He free-lanced as a content creator, sound designer, as well as promo creation and more for over a year before moving on to Radio City as a consultant. He has contributed his expertise for the past 8 years in both show production and station sound for India’s leading radio network.

New York Festivals: What was the turning point in your career?

Kaushik Dutta:  I used to work for a British call center at Gurgaon (a satellite town near the capital, New Delhi). While traveling back from office, in the cab I saw a newspaper ad for a vacancy of a Radio Jockey at a local radio station. After quite some time, they called me for an internship and after that there was no looking back. That newspaper ad was the turning point of my career.

New York Festivals:What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Kaushik Dutta: An Indian Radio Veteran once said to me, “Kaushik you cannot fake it on Radio, you will sound exactly what you are, on air. Your station is, WHAT YOU ARE. So don’t complicate it with figures (are you the no.1 or not). For doing honest radio, you have to be honest with your thoughts.

New York Festivals: Where do you see the industry moving in the next 5 years?

Kaushik Dutta: A lot of times radio professionals feel insecure about the future of radio. But in the process of feeling insecure they forget a basic thing. That radio transmits through air. So till the time this planet is supported by the atmosphere, Radio is going to stay. And in the next five years, we will see a lot of competition from the digital space, but then the same thing happened when Apple launched the iPod but today those devices are not even in the remotest corners of your store room.

New York Festivals:What is the responsibility of journalists in today’s world?

Kaushik Dutta: I have a single sentence answer to this question, “a journalist just needs to REPORT, a journalist is not a storyteller”.

If you like to narrate stories, please write a book, don’t be a journalist.

 

 

New York Festivals: What do you think are the hallmarks of award-winning work?

Kaushik Dutta: Honesty! And that is it. You cannot fake it on radio. Do the work that you are doing with conviction and honesty and awards will follow.

For more information on New York Festivals Radio Awards, please visit:http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/ and for information on the 2018 NYF Radio Awards Gala, please visit: http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/radio/main.php?p=2,7,15

 

 

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