George FM Cranks it up

Come in Titirangi! Come in Albany! Come in parts-of-Parnell-where-reception-used-to-drop-out-occasionally!

Gone are the days of George FM reception getting scratchy in places, or getting lost in the static as you leave Central Auckland.

They’ve twiddled the knobs, tweaked the dials, untangled the wires and cranked the dial to full power on our 96.8FM frequency in Auckland. So if you’d always loved George but couldn’t tune in – try again – chances are we’re broadcasting crystal clear wherever you are in the greater Auckland region. (Breakfast Host Nick D’s Mum in East Auckland can finally listen to her son!)

George FM Programme Director Thane Kirby is smiling from ear to ear. “It’s exciting times here at George. We have a fresh new breakfast show with Nick D, the station is sounding better than it ever has and now thousands and thousands of new listeners will be able to tune in!”

George FM General Manager, Emily Turnbull is pleased to see MediaWorks showing faith in their newly acquired station, bolstering its frequency strength both in Auckland and also in Queenstown. “The investment that MediaWorks is making in George FM is testament to the huge potential that everyone sees in the station.

When you look at the great results George FM has achieved with limited coverage, you can see why we’re so excited about the frequency power-up. To have George FM Auckland on a full power frequency is 10-years overdue!”

George FM started broadcasting in 1998 on a low power frequency from a Ponsonby bedroom where it built a cult following for dance and electronic music. The playlist now ranges from traditional club music like house and drum and bass, to specialist shows covering funk, indie, jazz, electro and beyond.

George FM hosts also regularly DJ including Nick D, Recloose, Dick Johnson, Clarke Gayford, Sam Hill, Bevan Keys, Tim Phin, Bulletproof, Philippa and 50 more.


Paul Henry to interview Helen Clark in New York

TVNZ’s Paul Henry is travelling to New York today to catch up with former Prime Minister Helen Clark and find out how’s she’s fitting in at the United Nations; what she’s actually doing there; and how she’s coping with life in America’s biggest city.

The former PM will join Paul for the entire programme as he hosts Breakfast from outside the UN headquarters on Monday. Paul will host Breakfast from the streets of Manhattan on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Since Helen Clark announced her major career change, Paul Henry has been interested in finding out how the former Prime Minister will fit in at the UN, “For a pragmatic woman who’s spent 9 years in the country’s top job, I’m intrigued to find out how she’s handling the endless compromise that must surround her daily. Also, what’s actually in her in-tray”, says Paul Henry.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Paul will look at how the US economy is bearing up and how Americans are feeling as the country moves out of recession. He’ll also get a US report card on the first 6 months of President Obama’s leadership.

His final challenge while in New York is to attempt to stay awake long enough to answer the question “Is this truly the city that never sleeps?”.

TVNZ has joined with the Telecom XT Mobile Network to bring viewers Breakfast live from New York next week.



TVNZ Correspondent to appear on US media show

TVNZ’s USA Correspondent, Tim Wilson appears in a brand new TV show reviewing the news media’s performance.

The Media Project is a US show made by the producers of Mike Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11 and hosted by Emmy Award winning journalist Gideon Yago (CBS News, MTV). It screens in NZ on TVNZ 7 and takes a hard-hitting look at how the news gets made and delivers an unapologetic perspective on what’s wrong with the news today, delving into important news stories and analysing how leading news outlets reported on them.

In Tuesday’s episode, Tim Wilson tackles the American financial sector and speaks frankly to industry professionals. He struggles to understand the US financial market and the collective madness that led to its climb and collapse. Looking back at previous crises, Tim demonstrates that the slump was entirely foreseeable but, unfortunately, he concludes the reporters who deliver the financial news in the USA are more cheerleaders than journalists.

The Media Project screens on TVNZ 7 on Tuesdays at 7.35pm. The episode featuring Tim Wilson goes to air this Tuesday the 28th of July.

TVNZ 7 can be seen on the Freeview Platform or on Channel 97 on Sky TV.

30 Years at TVNZ for Peter Williams

Veteran broadcast journalist, Peter Williams celebrates 30 years at TVNZ today.

He began his television career at Avalon in broadcasting career in radio in before moving to television in 1979 he moved to television, joining TV ONE Sports at Avalon as a reporter, presenter, commentator and field director.

Peter has anchored almost every high profile sporting event since 1979 including Cricket World Cups, Rugby World Cups, and several Olympic and Commonwealth Games.

However, during his time in sport he was probably best known as the anchor for the Saturday sports show, “Sport on One”

In 1997 he left Wellington and transferred to TVNZ in Auckland to work as a sports reporter and presenter on ONE News, making the move to News presenting full-time in 1999. But Peter’s never been far away from the big sports events, most recently anchoring TVNZ’s coverage of the 2008 Olympics from Beijing.

“It’s always been a privilege to work at the country’s premier broadcasting company,“ says Peter Williams.

“The television landscape has changed dramatically in the last thirty years, but TVNZ still has the channels that New Zealanders watch the most.

“So to be part of an organisation which remains an important part of New Zealanders’ daily lives has been a fulfilling experience – and one which hopefully will go on for a few years yet.”

Peter was born in Geraldine, South Canterbury in 1954 – the son of two primary school teachers. He spent a short time in Canterbury before his parents moved to teach in and around Invercargill. Peter was educated at Waitaki Boys High School during his secondary years after his family moved to Oamaru.

His broadcasting career started at private radio station, 4XO in Dunedin in 1972 doing the mid-dawn shift. He moved to the state radio and television broadcaster, then known as NZBC, and worked on the local radio stations in Masterton (2ZD), Blenheim (2ZE), Invercargill (4ZA) and Christchurch (3ZB) before moving to TV.

“Peter is a first class journalist and broadcaster, if he wasn’t he wouldn’t have lasted 30 years in front of the camera,” says Anthony Flannery, TVNZ’s Head of News and Current Affairs.

“He is a true professional – extremely hard working, committed and incredibly popular with viewers”.

“With Peter it’s a case of what you see is what you get – he’s a great bloke with a passion for television and the news.”

Peter recalls the 21st of July 1979 being his very first day in television. It was the day he was assigned to cover a Rugby League Test at Carlaw Park in Auckland and being the ‘trainspotter’ he is, he remembers who played, who won, who coached, how many watched and probably the ticket price for the Test as well.

The time between that Carlaw Park Test and now doesn’t seem like 30 years according to Peter.

“To be honest it doesn’t feel that long, but then you think of who you’ve worked with and the managers and executives who’ve run the company, you realise how much things have changed,” says Peter Williams.

“When I started it was basically a government department with a complete monopoly. Now it’s a multi media company in a fiercely competitive environment. But above all it’s been a great place to work and a place where many of my colleagues have become life long friends.”


Skins cast axed…again

Skins producers have announced that the entire cast will be replaced when the 5th series of Skins gets under way it has been reported.  The show controversially dumped its original cast of the show after two series and are set to do the same again to its current stars.

Dev Patel played Anwar Kharral in the first two series of Skins, and went on to star in Slumdog Millionare.

Production on the fourth series kicked off in Bristol last week.

Do you have a favourite Skins character?