RWAV Blog: Week 5 – The Individual Interview

For our Week 6 show on 3RRR, I thought it would a nice idea to include a pre-recorded interview into our RWAV show so that we ended up with enough material to fill the 1 hour time slot. This interview would also be used towards my individual interview after being accepted by the Talks Manager at Triple R and Bruce/Sam.

So, I went off and contacted a man named Simon Starr, my best friend’s dad who owns his own bird company named Birding Victoria, which provides resources on different birds and where to find them as well as his own tour company called Firetail Birdwatching Tours. I pitched him an idea to discuss not only his love for birdwatching, but also a discussion of the duck shooting problem, something that I was only slightly aware of. Before the interview took place, I had a brief chat to him about the sorts of questions I would ask him without giving too much away, so that he could have a think about what he might like to say in the short time provided.

It’s usually recommended that you chat with your interviewee before the interview in order to make them feel more relaxed and comfortable both when recording and directly with the interviewer. However, this wasn’t as important for Simon and I because we already knew each other and we both felt pretty comfortable talking to one another. Once he arrived at the studio, it was a matter of testing microphone levels and ensuring that audacity was recording and we were away!

Overall, I think the interview went quite well. Below is a list of dot points and more of a breakdown as to things that went well and not so well.

  • Timing: When recording, I noticed that it was getting closer to the 10-11 minute mark. Without thinking about the time after the editing would be complete, I cut it off at this point. However, after doing some thorough editing of the ‘um’s or any pauses’ it was cut down to 7 minutes and 22 seconds, only just scraping the length of the Individual Interview assignment. I think in future, I need to remember that less is more and having had Simon answer more questions would have meant more content and time to play with!
  • Leading questions from previous answers: Something I’ve always said to myself that I want to get better at is commenting beyond an answer without it seems jarring or out of place and awkward. For an interview of this kind, I didn’t want to say too much considering it was mainly focussed on Simon’s work as well as his views on the duck-shooting. During the interview, Simon told me of a story that was recently aired on the 7:30 Report on ABC which I then questioned him about. I think this worked well and actually seemed quite natural as it appeared as though I was interested and had done research and allowed Simon to talk beyond what I already ‘knew’.
  • Amount of questions: I think again relating back to the timing of the piece, I could have asked a few more questions. However I was pretty happy with the amount of research I had done and the fact that I tried to make it seem quite natural, especially at the beginning when we were laughing about his comments regarding birdwatching and that it isn’t just about watching birds.
  • Editing Phase: Regarding the post-production and editing of the interview, I think it was a nice addition to add the bird chirps at the beginning and the end, to give the piece a bit of ambience which may otherwise not exist. It would have been fantastic to record this interview on location but this is something that may be considered for my feature interview later on in the semester. I think overall I did a pretty good job with the tone and the way I spoke, varying levels depending on the types of questions I was asking and I was really happy with the fact that the interview was done in ONE take with barely any pauses. This made it relatively easy to edit and it probably saved me from still keeping within the required time frame of the assignment. At the end of the take, all I had to edit were a few um’s from Simon which made the audio seem a little too jarring at times. Again, this is something super minor and Simon did a fantastic job at speaking with me, especially for someone who hasn’t had a lot of media training. He was succinct with his answers and knew what he wanted to say which was fantastic.

Below is an embed link to the interview that you can listen to. The file also contains some more annotations regarding certain parts of the interview!

 

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About samanthabeniacbrooks

My name is Samantha Beniac-Brooks but I prefer Sammy. I'm studying BComm Media and am interested in becoming in a Media Presenter. I love theatre, music, celebrities and anything to do with the media. This is my blog for RMIT Media 1.
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