TV Diversity: Who Will Win Your Vote?

18 Nov 2014

Panel (L-R): Helen Goodman MP, Clive Myrie, Ed Vaizey MP, Stephen Gilbert MP (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)
Panel (L-R): Helen Goodman MP, Clive Myrie, Ed Vaizey MP, Stephen Gilbert MP (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)
Real progress is finally being made in tackling the lack of diversity in the British television sector, but more work needs to be done.

November's RTS News

18 Nov 2014
News from the RTS this month

London's take on Amsterdam

London Centre offered a review of IBC's weird and wonderful exhibits at the end of September. The annual media technologies conference and exhibition had welcomed more than 55,000 attendees to Amsterdam earlier in the month.

Colin Shaw CBE 1928-2014

18 Nov 2014
One of television’s most influential bureaucrats, Colin Shaw, has died, aged 85.

Colin Shaw
Colin Shaw has died, aged 85 (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)
Few of television’s senior bureaucrats have been as influential as Colin Shaw, who has died, aged 85.

A Fellow of the RTS and a regular attender of Society events, Shaw’s low-key, but incisive, wit helped negotiate the BBC out of many a tight spot in the 1960s and 1970s. He was latterly the corporation’s Chief Secretary.

TV Diary

17 Nov 2014
When not emulating Ally, the Night Owl, Brigitte Trafford relishes any work day that includes a high-vis jacket and Swiss wine

I am a Leytonstone girl by birth. I share that provenance with David Beckham, and I have many happy memories in my teens of going to watch Trevor Brooking (look him up, if you’re under 40) at Upton Park.

It was a different football world, back then. No seats, for a start. And it did not seem that long ago since England lifted the World Cup with a West Ham player as captain.

Masterclass: Drama and the craft of screenwriting

18 Nov 2014
Gwyneth Hughes shares her approach to the craft of screenwriting with Matthew Bell

Students awaiting the talk
Potential screenwriters of the future (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)
Gwyneth Hughes is one of the most versatile writers working in British television. Her screenplays encompass crime serials, costume drama and fact-based pieces.

Masterclass: How to crack it in comedy

18 Nov 2014
Saurabh Kakkar recommends online pitching for those who want to get ahead in comedy. Steve Clarke takes notes.

Jane Austen, JK Rowling and Hilary Mantel would all have made the grade in TV. That's because they are all great storytellers. "If you are not terribly excited about all forms of storytelling, you've got no business being in television at all," stressed Saurabh Kakkar, Head of Comedy Development at Big Talk Productions, speaking at the opening RTS Student Programme Masterclass.

He added: "All storytelling is entertaining an audience... If you have a passion for it, the chances are that you have done something about it.

Masterclass: The hard facts of factual TV

17 Nov 2014
Andrew Mackenzie, the man behind Educating Yorkshire, explains why creatives need to be entrepreneurs, reports Matthew Bell

Andrew Mackenzie speaking to Katy Thoroggood
Andrew Mackenzie speaking to Katy Thoroggood (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)
Twofour Group has made some of the most critically acclaimed factual TV of recent years. One of its biggest shows has been Channel 4’s Educating Yorkshire. The company’s Chief Creative Officer, Andrew Mackenzie, is also no stranger to controversy, having commissioned My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding during his time at Channel 4.

How to Survive as a Freelancer

17 Nov 2014
Matthew Bell hears that working as a TV freelancer requires nerves of steel but the rewards can be lucrative

Making television can be a precarious occupation. Jobs are hard to land and rarely last longer than six months. Production staff are constantly looking for new positions and are often out of work. The creative rewards, though, can be immense for freelancers working in such a vibrant industry.

The latest RTS Futures event, "How to survive as a freelancer", assembled an expert group of talent managers and production staff to offer tips on networking, writing CVs, successful interviews and managing money.

Self-shooting guide to stardom

17 Nov 2014
How do researchers and assistant producers go about developing this vital skill? Matthew Bell supplies the answers

Self-shooting is rapidly becoming a key part of the job description for researchers and assistant producers working in television’s factual arena. But with training thin on the ground, how will tomorrow’s TV talent learn to shoot their own material?
Help was provided by a recent RTS Futures event, “Shooting stars: a beginners’ guide to self-shooting”. A panel of self-shooters, chaired by executive producer Matt Bennett, offered advice, while training in basic camera skills was provided by Pro Motion Hire.

Apply now: Young technologists needed

17 Nov 2014
The television industry’s failure to attract young engineers has put it in a critical situation. Sanya Burgess looks at new initiatives to avert disaster

So few engineering graduates are joining the broadcast industry that “we might actually forget how to make television programmes”, warns Simon Broad, Programme Manager at the BBC Academy.

The International Association of Broadcasting Manufacturers (IABM) backs this up by pointing out that 60% of the broadcast engineering workforce are set to retire within the next 10 years.

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