Live show review

It was the second live YouTube show of this calendar year for the second years on Monday, where the show took on a slightly different look from the norm.

My role was to be the assistant director to Nick Newton and assist him with his ideas and decide on how the show should look. Nick decided well in advance that he wanted to make a few changes from how the show usually looks and myself and he spoke about those ideas during the previous week. I did make it clear that I wasn’t keen on a few of his suggestions but, as he was my director, I informed him that I would be happy to assist with whatever he wanted to do.

The first big change that Nick decided to make was to, instead of having the presenters, Theo and Mahria, on the sofa to start with – they would begin the broadcast around one of the newsroom tables in front of the windows. Then, when it came time for the bulletins, Nicola would deliver them from the same table as to where the presenters were sitting. We had to then figure out when to get the presenters back to the sofa, for the 2-way and the guest interview.

So, on the day of the show after Nick had gone over his ideas with me once again, we set about how we would film the shots and make it work. I came up with the idea to have the presenters sitting at the table and introduce Nicola because it would have looked strange if the presenters moved to elsewhere and she was sat on the same table. We then set up the shots and gave Ralitsa the role of moving the camera, to ensure that Nicola would be in the shot.

I and Nick then set up the camera for the sofa, with me giving him guidance on what the best angles would be. Then, we set up the social media board and got Olivia to stand in front of it so we knew how best to frame her in it.

After that, I told Nick I would look through the packages, to make sure that we knew what to expect and so we could work with the news editor, Charlie, on how the show would look best. There were a couple of things that needed changing, so I relayed that to the groups and got them to add them to their packages, such as lower thirds. I worked with Charlie to help him with a few of his jobs, as he had a lot to do on the day.

It was hard after this for Nick and myself to get the job of setting the show up properly, because the scripts were not in on time, or were not good enough to go out live. The production meeting ended up being late and we ended up pressed for time in the build-up to the show.

We eventually had a run-through of the show before going live, which highlighted a few problems. The scripts didn’t have names on them and there was one package that wasn’t playing properly because it was in the wrong format.

Just before the show started, our guest arrived – but I had the idea earlier on in the day of putting him on the sofa from the start – which meant we didn’t have to keep moving him about.

So, onto the show. The presenters did a really good job, despite there being a couple of problems with packages which meant a change to the script. One of the packages had to go later on because it had to be edited right before the show, but it was eventually well saved and it was good to get it broadcasted. There was another package that didn’t work for some reason also but we had to work with what we had there and then.

After Nicola delivered the bulletins well, I made sure the presenters safely made their way over to the sofa during one of the packages. The 2-way wasn’t too bad but the area was a bit loud. The guest gave a good interview, though, and the presenters did well with questioning him.

For some reason when it came to social media, the cameras that we had worked on earlier in the day had been changed and it was terribly framed. It was hard to see Olivia and the board, but she did well in her role.

The show ended on a negative, as the cameras were not changed onto the right screen and the person in charge of the audio was not paying attention. It wasn’t the great show, but we got it done.

Fair play to Nick for trying out some new things, but I think he may have pushed himself too far. The ideas were good, although I am not sure they were completely thought through. It’s a good learning curve.


My group VT was about student volunteer week. I had quite an active role in the VT, as I filmed everything that was shown and picked the spots where to film them. I think the VT was well presented, filmed and edit – a good team effort. 

About the Author

James Murray

James Murray

James Murray - Sports fanatic; aspiring journalist studying at London South Bank University.