Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Video killed the radio star

Last night I had my first ever appearance on live TV, if you exclude being in the crowd at a Leinster rugby match. After a bit of emailing back and forth I was invited to appear on Tonight with Vincent Browne on TV3 along with other Seanad candidates Marc Coleman (DU) and Eoin O'Broin (NUI) along with Noirin Hegarty recently of the Sunday Tribune and now with the Independent Online.

As a very regular viewer and tweeter of #vinb I knew pretty much what to expect with the show but I had a bit of a wardrobe moment around 6ish when the producer texted me reminding me that the show is shot using chroma compositing. Unfortunately I had brought a blue-white striped shirt and my navy jacket to wear and TV3 use blue as their chroma colour rather than green-screening like I thought they did. I had plans in Rathmines over teatime and had not planned on heading home until after the show. However, not wanting to appear as a floating head, I dashed home to change to the suit and a non-blue shirt, and found myself in Ballymount ready to go at 10:30.

Once on air, we spent the opening 20 minutes or so discussing the Seanad and why the various candidates felt they should be elected. Of course Vincent and Noirin were having none of it. At one point I may have gotten stuck into Donie Cassidy a bit too much but that was only because I couldn't bring myself to say Ivor Callely's name on air. However, at this stage of the campaign most viewers will have heard most of the debate on the future of the Seanad and how it should be either reformed or abolished and so sensibly Vincent went to an early break.

During the break the front pages of the newspapers along with some of the opinion pages were brought in to the studio. I was immediately drawn to Fintan O'Toole's article on how the negative equity generation should take to the streets. Eoin and Noirin started discussing welfare cuts and the poverty trap and mention was made of protests. I tried to get involved bringing in O'Toole's article but the moment passed before there was a convenient pause.

During the second half, I got into a bit of a fight with Marc over academics and their 10 hour work week and then followed up with a bit about the liquidation of the University pension schemes at the bottom of the market by Brian Lenihan. This morning in work, those are the bits that got me the most praise - quelle surprise, academics stand together on these sorts of things! After a brief discussion of campaign financing Vincent suddenly called time and we were done.

All in all I'm pretty happy with how things went. Would have liked to have gotten in a bit more on science and technology but that probably wouldn't have made for great TV. Also, and for this I am grateful, I think Noirin and Vincent both went a bit easier on me than on Eoin and Marc. While I have done plenty of radio in the past, live TV is a whole other ball game. But having one show under my belt I'm pretty sure I could handle it being kicked up a notch or two if I end up in front of the camera again.

For those that want to watch it again have a look here.

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