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Read this: 08/11/2019 Radio 4 Feedback

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08/11/2019 Radio 4 Feedback…

BBC sounds music Radio podcasts for the first time in 96 years we've got an election in the middle of Winter BBC comedy writers wondering if they will have to be boring rebalanced and tell me laugh actually General Election makes it a bit easier because the different opposition parties are making statements and gas left right and centre.

There's certainly have been that's Julia McKenzie creative director at BBC Studios audio.

She's in charge of many of our favourite comedy shows I'll ask her what constraint if any she faces during the election and I've just been reading and put on the BBC's website about making more output for young people.

Please don't forget those who pay for the licence.

That's something.

I'll be discussing with Gavin Allen BBC head of news output in the second.

Interview it's important that we reach out to young and old alike in an engaging way and not just sit there hoping they'll come to us and we'll be put into through a really uncomfortable listen as we take them well out of anyone's comfort zone and I'm trying to pull Riley's house Warrenpoint his daughter had been caught in a bomb attack and no warning born she was aged 21.

Whenever she died.

I understand that people in trauma.

Need to talk but they don't need to be exploited did Sue's fellow listening agree find out later in feedback.

The Now Show is back putting a further strain on Who Genesis vocal cords and doing what satirist have done since at least classical times pub Thanet power, but do they tend to do this from a left-wing perspective some of our listeners think so now she has been hosted for over 20-years by Hugh Dennis and Steve punt and they find themselves once more in the middle of a general election they have to pull in their horns and now joined by their boss Julie McKenzie creative director at BBC Studios audio, who is responsible for all the radio comedy produced in house using favorites such as dead ringers the News Quiz and of course and I'll show balance rules we have to do Jeremy Corbyn stable job now until Parliament results, are there any rules do you have to do things differently have cut jokes you would like to go out in it another time of year.

Do you have to be?

Now particularly, it's not that seesaw between Labour and conservatives, so there's all these different parties that we need to hear voices from so I will be mindful across the series extra mindful that we need to make sure that tackling that range with targets.

So it's not literally as Steve says if you do one joke about Boris Johnson will have to do one about Jeremy Corbyn but you know we do have to be vigilant that we don't have a very partial but it's easy with an hour because it's largely scripted, so we've got those opening sections.

We can we got a writer's and we can make sure that we we hear a range of targets and then we can be careful about the guests to bring in so they've got different perspectives on me and you want people to be spontaneous.

You want to add leave.

Don't you want them to sense what the audience is picking up and play it absolutely yeah, and you want them to be funny above all we do we don't things just purely because of their political representation, but yes, that's where they had it comes in because something like that now show all recorded over an hour and it's a 28-minute show and that's why you you exercise your

Obviously, you want to have those lovely as hot moments they had lives but you can just sit in the current series of the Now show us lots love it reservations from York I found recent series of the Now Show disappointing rather a whisk reformat however the opening and it was excellent.

I laughed out loud and I'm looking forward to subsequent programs Mike Gibbons from Malpas for many years have listened to the now but about 9 months ago.

I gave up on it the so-called humour wasn't funny unless perhaps you were drunk student and politically revolves around remaining in Europe and Nelson for different was a complete idiot while Julia McKenzie we often have allegations that he is left wing anti government now has an increasing amount of it auntie.

You're into some extent.

You know you have to choose the funniest comedians.

Let them do what they want, but it's the fact that most comedians are left wing and as far as artistic anti-brexit.


I suppose generally institutionally comedy is quite left-leaning plenty of comedians.

You need to go out and find so got right wing comedian that money out and Proud conservative voters on the comedy circuit is Geoff Northcott who's made a bit of a profession of that a bit of a clear of that he's done shows that specifically and then went to other people out there who talked about voting conservative but of course the majority of comedians a political they want to talk about their life stories our upbringing and all that sort of thing that you want to address party political stuff and Simon Evans is a really interesting documentary.

I don't know if you heard that still on sounds by the way if you want to check it out and he explored exactly this tension.

Conservative is very funny common this but is that why you particularly came through to be on your programs to provide that balance is having that perspective and what I like about his very witty, but also he's got that inside a thing which I think is fascinating to an audience.

We want to hear those slightly indiscreet.

Story is about what happens behind the scenes and he's a journalist and his highly articulate and we use other journalists to help address that so you know the likes of Hugo rifkind Isabel Hardman Helen Lewis and Tim Shipman bring that different perspective but done yet.

He's very cute or repair yeah, and do you ever had some people suspect add laughter know that I've often heard that we have been asked by the way do you ever turn up the volume of the laughter so it sounds funnier on radio and it does in the studio when it's recorded know there are some technical times when you will.

With a laugh sometimes we might reduce a laugh or if you're everything so if we recording an hour and a half now show or at the News Quiz and we wanted to go to 28 minutes.

You'll have to remove stuff a little mean that you have half a laugh where someone has started talking and you've done and edit and will use at what we call a clean laugh or you don't have speech over it to mend that had it done some people fall about things.

I can't stand it is an interesting example of someone who can't wipe their own ass and then she had a baby baby in price.

I had to switch off the now so quickly as the suppose of comedian the crack about Harry not being able to wipe his own ass she should be doing stand-up with Frankie Boyle we can't keep up this contemptible language.

After those who deliver it and those who get caught by hearing it on Friday night out Saturday lunchtime, so what's that joke appropriate? I think it was I think it was funny.

I must say Sophie duker is is brilliant comedian.

I was thrilled that she did the show with us and you know we knew that she was going to do this piece about the royal couple and we know that the audience can be sensitive with that so very careful at Scripps days to just ensure that it was clever and smart it is an adult network Radio 4 and we have to be mindful.

It's a school runs and that sort of thing or any programs that same children of which there are any as far as I know on Radio 4 but with these very well-established comedy show that slot Saturday lunchtime and Friday tea time is that you can expect some comedy that might occasionally offend or surprised you so I think that in the great scheme of things.

That joke was I can't think it was funny I said bottom but you know it's about being authentic to the language used to tell the jokes and I felt that was that was a joke by Sophie duco.

Just heard it on the Now Show a relatively new voice is the Now Show a vehicle for two presents.

It's been over 20 years 1-4 presenters.

You look that shows in that we can put in and test new Talent we have a lot of established names who performed in that series as well.

They're not all new biz, but it is good and important for Radio 4 to bring those new voices to the listeners and also Stephen who really like to do that.

You know if you say they've been doing it for 20 years and they really want that new generation.

You know you Genesis Mock the Week as well.

Which has a lot of young comedians on so they're really passionate about that.

So they're happy to create that so that for the audience they feel very comfortable.

Thank you and then they feel that they can listen to these new voices so I think it's an important thing for us to trying to the rest of the year we can rest assured that we will go ahead as planned.

Yes indeed all will there be a dead Ringer special.

Yes, it's wonderful I love all of our shows but dead ringers is funny the news follows it around dead ringers.

Did the referendum and it did the previous selection and the first thing as we got three coming up at Christmas is going to be the day after the general election so the right he's gonna have to stay up all night and then be writing again very early in the morning record that Friday lunchtime after the election my thanks to Julia McKenzie creative director at BBC Studios audio.

Please do let us know your thoughts on that item and anything to do with BBC Radio this is how you can get in you can send an email to feedback at or write a letter the address is feedback PO Box 672 34.

Se1p 4ax you can follow activity on Twitter by using at BBC R4 feedback, or you can call us and leave a phone message on 03345 for standard landline charges apply for a could cost more on some mobile networks of those details on our website asking to BBC Radio listeners to change their usual listening habits and listen to a program that would normally be on their radar this week.

We have Susan Hornby from Southport and James phelan from Northallerton in North Yorkshire welcome to feedback to get a sense of what like what would be your top TV programmes if you were standard on that mythical desert island the Archers definitely any BBC comedy with John Finnemore in and

Reunion and James I would choose up all night with the bio Inside Science with Adam Rutherford and the wonderful Jim al-khalili doing Life Scientific we asked you to listen to this feature on Radio 3 The Hidden Reservoir 50 years of Troubles in Northern Ireland broadcast on Sunday the 20th of October at 18:45 and it looked at the role of healing and reconciliation in Northern Ireland Susan to do appreciate this program.

No, I didn't like it.

I ended up shouting at radio what protein content was about artists using people's trauma to make art and I found it at the exploitative and at worst voyeuristic.

There was a scene where an artist was talking about portraits that he made of people.

Lost children in The Troubles and he talked about sitting in a dead woman's bedroom with the father and the pink clock behind him and just screamed.

You shouldn't be doing that he ended up setting for me for a few hours on Joanne's bed as it was kept exactly since she died the clock on the wall was a little girls clock a pink clock stopped at 9:58.

Which was the time the moment off and what I decided to do was pick the energy of the encounter and the trauma of the encounter back into the painting itself.

I didn't at all I really loved it.

I mean call right from the stars use the word.

We when he's talking about it, so I felt right from the beginning.

He was part of it all the Beginning talked about the black substance of our pain which I thought was quite strong looking at happy birthday, but he does this help it is there any good and at the end of it is anyone happier Susan Newton knowledge that argument about whether it is a good thing to do such art and son was debated.

Oh yes.

Yes and at one point.

I think it was towards the end somebody can help but it can read traumatised.

I think that was brought through the program.

It was no yes or no.

Good or bad it was just this is a possibility you think people were being used yes, but not all the time if I think art and art therapy can help but I think it's a very individual istick.

And I think art can be made of trauma, but when it's anonymize and also when it's distant, it's too close and it's to pay these portraits of individual people suffering it made me feel when you talked Susan about the pink clock that thing that was in my soul after I don't think that was exploited of the two I thought it was so poignant his manhood his daughter Joanna died at the age of 21 and he was looking in the bedroom and he kept his pink clock and then pink clock and I just so you know my heart broke for what has happened in Northern Ireland well.

There's no way I think we're going to get you to agree on this as a result of listening to that program.

Are you more likely to listen to the radio through feature sort of yes, I will choose because I have already listened to one of the back.

Catalogue which was about children's literature and it was excellent so I will select the ones I I want to listen to that the future.

Will you listen to the games? I certainly will never heard it before but I got in his gentle Way made it a wonderfully sensitive programme about a huge soul in British society in the department in Northern Ireland well, James Fareham and Susan Hornby thank you very much for joining us and do let us know if you would like to take part in that item now back to Westminster and the question is this Noah German as many other Parliament has risen and the general election as well and truly began last week.

We spoke to Gavin Allen the head of news are good for the BBC who told us he couldn't wait for it all to get started.

I wonder if you still thinks that this week I

About some of the issues raised by a report from Ofcom which regulates the BBC it recently published its review into the corporations news and current affairs output and one that the BBC may not be sustainable in its current form if it can't persuade more people to use it services including of course the news however I Began the interview with a question from a police experience listener who had a general concern about the corporations news coverage.


I'm David from Sheffield really worried about the bandwidths or lack of it in terms of news September 14th was a really good example where the news was pretty much the same from the Today programme all the way through to the 6:00 news in the evening with 1 bizarre incident at lunch time.

We have the news reader reader piece Nicky Morgan then actually repeating in her own words what the newsreader a red and then a summary of what she said from one of the political, Correspondents

David from Sheffield is of course the former have said to David Blunkett there is a danger stories pop-up in headline, and he said the first story in the running of a yes, of course you go to it very quickly than you may hear colfax repeated, but that's sort of the nature of an introduction to a piece that you can hear about and if it's the most important piece.

I don't think it's so terrible that it bears a bit of repetition.

I think it's pretty rare account examples where you literally hear the same thing you might be feeding off a point to make a separate point to a supplementary point but we don't just repeat the news through times of Avenue stores pubs and reported under reporting concerns about a particular part of the world.

I am concerned that BBC News has an obsession with news from the US play Pakistan Afghanistan and the Middle East by contrast news from France and the countries of Western Europe themes minimal who decides which areas of the World Cup

Which to ignore the BBC is out of balance here and there needs to be some rebalancing of coverage Gavin on first or do you think Europe is underreported and has been ported over perhaps quite a long period until the bound to say no equal I suppose if I was truly honest it was so many come to the world.

Everywhere is underreported in truth.

We desperately trying to report all the News of the World on a daily basis.

You do cover as we speak English as America gets that covers all the places which are perhaps easy of access also you do cover as well.

So when you have gradual but important change is perhaps less perceptible.

There's always a reason for dropping it off the running order and some would say that happened with your with the result that during the campaign for example it don't think the public was very well informed about the nature of Europe I'm not sure that's true.

I know you've seen you like that.

I'm bored.

I'm happy to serve review.

I just instinctively think is right.

I look back or listen back to the world tonight over over recent weeks.

They done everything from pumpkin Germany to gay rights in Poland in June in Bulgaria Bulgaria there's death of Franco exhumation is a lot of stories in Europe it's true that are they getting the the prominence and it's brexit that they might probably not but they're they're run on main news bulletins and we got correspondence across Europe and so I don't have anymore.

Everyone is familiar with the laser Zone but they might be used because we have got the protest on violence not the underlying political Changes but let me pick a couple of things and more things from the Ofcom report.

They said that contain to see the BBC News to count first content as middle-class and london-centric whether it's effect is not we'll get to that you accepted that is a perception m71i and count when I go to the north of England for example.

I think it is perception.

Whether it's true or not having said that even on the whether it's true or not.

We are striving to be a more diverse organisation so we recognise that we would look forward to go to truly reflect the UK but it's not just diversity of gender or ethnicity class even for the sake of taking a box.

It is about diversity of thought and input into what we make you happy know when you have the BBC News Center adds a fantastic new centre, but you're all that together.

There is great danger of reinforce each other's views in case we're getting more news.

Maybe not coming out of London because it's not some just the people it's the stories that surround them on the date in the digital asset which they bring to the table when you're deciding what to do agree that there is scope to look afresh at where we're based physically where we basically got obviously networks of nations and regions as you say breakfast TV and sport and 5 live.

Newsround actually for that matter in Salford and I think it does refresh and change and extend our agenda and give us a greater breadth of a viewpoint in every journalist legalization.

There is a danger of groupthink.

It's a thing we always try and raise against and having different perspectives based on as a diversity of thought is essential that fine I can do with depression or I'll be young people and Ofcom obviously game makes the point and didn't government has made the point you've got to get younger more younger people listening and watching before we do it with that.

There are a lot of our older or listen to Radio 4 which thing actually you're starting to care less about your regular and faithful listeners than you are about this new or young audience that may not be there an I've just been Ofcom report on the BBC's website about making more output for young people.

Please don't forget those who pay for the licence if you do you may find that we decide to do without you.

There's no.

We want to watch listen to and stop paying for the licence so going on in the way between a rock and a hard place.

Are you worried about losing your traditional audience in pursuing? This is this raised a lot into the BBC about making sure we don't neglect our core audience.

I think it's based in truth on a slight myth that if you were appealing to younger audiences you inevitable y Luz older audiences.

I won't be going to a screening of two or three items that we produce packages be produced and a young person an older person sitting side-by-side watching these pieces and funny enough the pieces that were dull and badly done.

They both didn't like the pieces that were really interesting engaging they both really light when you hear the grounds on the date and when it does something about relatively modern pop the best interest in helping older audiences on a member of it, but he

I think that I thought I got children.

I want to know about stuff to my children stick my niece is my nephew's and I think we can over caricature the idea that young people just want to the environment politics and foreign affairs they may be interested in a selection of different things as well, but it's more about how we do those things.

They might want to be conveyed or producing a different way, but fund news should appeal across the board if it's done in an interesting engaging way, but it one last question relations it is there been reports of the BBC introducing an interactive service which allows us to the News Bulletin store and tastes and interests have left.

So what we don't want more what we do want and Peter kellner.

I said this one of the strengths of the BBC is it obligation of the balancing is it would be a shame if in the restless drive to be Modern interactive and to appeal to a younger audience The Corporation gave it to listen as the part of filter out boring or unpalatable material that's

Well, what the world and optical BBC's about this real danger that in the present world people are inside of an echo chamber if you help them to choose only the news there listening to some of the other news we need to know about will go by so, are you worried about this development this interactive development.

No, I'm fully backing this interactive Falls within my I think actually again at the moment people can filter out news people can go online and not read anything they sorted it out.

They are coming to this interactive service asking the BBC News actively for news and for this service and I think it's the opposite of what you suggest.

I didn't actually what we are offering them is rather than just a 678 minutes running order bulletin you can get more you can request greeted if you can request a 23-minute podcast on that story that you just listened to and you can get less because I don't hear about a rush to actually hear that.

The economy, I don't hear that.

I just wanted more Sport or whatever.

I'm interested in there is another danger at more generally that we are becoming more more to the side button narrowly informed that the BBC doesn't operate in a vacuum the fact is Lisa editors these people making any decisions for better than the BBC does it with its own editorial oversight than an algorithm allowing you to do that echo chamber entity in your own environment.

We are offering people quality news and more on Top by having an interactive says slightly wrist been patronising people that they just going to skip important using just go to the echoes their own.

I just don't think it's actually really cool evidence to support that they will look at the data will see what people are skipping it may well, be not that they're reinforcing the record chamber.

You might find this story.

We need to explore white how do we produce that represent it but I think it's it's important that we reach out to young and old alike in an engaging way and not just sit there hoping they'll come to us my thanks to Gavin Allen head of BBC news about put next week.

I'll be talking to Helena Merriman producer of the match promoted turning 29 the latest podcast from the BBC which is also being broadcast on Radio 4 Just a width of a coffin and inside it doesn't joakim Is Crawling 30 years after the Fall of the Berlin Wall this is the story about a man who dug a tunnel into the east the series has just come to an end, so do let us know what you thought about it and what questions you would like me to ask its producer presenter until next week, goodbye.

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