Newsreader Suzy Clarkson is departing her weekend post on Prime News First at 5.30.

Clarkson is leaving her role at Prime as weekend newsreader after joining the network in 2004 as anchor and producer of the half-hour bulletin.

The former aerobics video star and Shortland Street actress is departing amid news that Prime are boosting their weeknight coverage by introducing a 7pm show bulletin which will be anchored by Eric Young.

The new bulletins will begin in the old Crowd Goes Wild timeslot as of December 6.

Source: Herald

New Zealanders will be surprised at what the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra has achieved in Europe, according to TV personality Jeremy Wells.

Wells and a documentary TV crew have spent three weeks following the NZSO on the biggest international tour of its history, performing in China, Slovenia, Austria, Germany and Switzerland in some of the world’s most famous concert halls.

Wells said Kiwis would be taken aback by the way European audiences had received the NZSO.

“I’ve counted five standing ovations, two semi-standing ovations and one attempted standing ovation. They genuinely seem to be thrilled, and have been treated to a great time. And they’re a tough crowd, who aren’t easily impressed.”

The NZSO had achieved other benchmarks, Wells said. “Professionalism and dedication – not only in music, but in grooming and personal hygiene. The standard of ablution is second to none.”

Wells’ crew had shot at least 80 hours of footage for a documentary that would ultimately reveal a new side of the NZSO to an audience unaccustomed to symphonic music.

“There’s a complexity to orchestral music that means you can listen to the same symphony for 30 years and enjoy it more and more every time you hear it,” said Wells. “I’ve still never met anyone who’s been to an NZSO performance and not been moved.”

Wells said spending three weeks in close quarters with NZSO musicians had resulted in new friendships. “I’m pleased with that because I like dropping names in polite dinner conversation. These guys are really clever people. Except the percussion guys.”

Wells’ 70-minute NZSO documentary is funded by New Zealand on Air for broadcast on Prime in mid-2011.

The NZSO tour ended tonight in Hamburg (local time). The orchestra arrives home to Wellington Airport at 6pm on Friday 19 November (NZ time).

(From a press release)

Every year I ask how long it will be before we see Prime being broadcast in HD.  Every year I’m told the same thing. Not yet.

This year however, the story was a little different.

At the 2011 launch, one of the shows that really caught my attention was the new BBC/David Attenborough documentary Life. When I cheekily suggested it would look so much better in HD, there wasn’t the usual, “wouldn’t it… shame we’re not doing that” line.  Instead, it was suggested that it was indeed on the horizon.  An exact date was a little less forthcoming but it’s good to know that it is on the way.

Prime have been testing HD broadcasts, running an HD simulcast of Prime during the Commonwealth Games on Sky.

With BBC One in the UK aiming for all content to be HD by 2012, this would mean that shows like Doctor Who would finally be available for broadcast in HD.

Check out a the trailer for Life:

Former Eating Media Lunch host Jeremy Wells will collaborate with Prime in making a documentary which focuses on the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

The documentary, entitled The Great Tour, will follow the NZSO as it tours some of the most prestigious concert halls in Europe.

Wells will team up with long-time collaborator Paul Casserly on the project which is set to screen on Prime midway through next year.

To some, Wells may not seem the ideal choice to front such a project but the man himself says he has a long-standing fascination with the orchestra.

“An old friend took me along to Tchaikovsky’s 1st Piano Concerto probably six or seven years ago,” said Wells. “I was blown away. Ever since then whenever I can go I’ve tried to go. It’s a great experience.”

Chief Executive of the NZSO Peter Walls said he was hooked on the idea straight away.

“Someone said to me ‘look, you better have a look at an episode of Birdland to make sure you want to get into this’ and I did, and I thought it was fantastic.”

“I think the thing that impressed me most about Birdland, was ultimately the respect for what he was talking about, and since we knew he was a great fan of classical music, and comes to our concerts, it just seemed like an excellent fit.”

Source: NZHerald

Television revenue for the third quarter of 2010 was $164.7 million, an increase of $16.7 million or 11.3% from the $148 million achieved in the third quarter of 2009.

This is the third consecutive quarter of year-on-year growth for the industry, and a clear indication that advertisers are understanding the value Television brings to their marketing efforts.

For the first three quarters of 2010, Television has seen revenue growth of $30.6 million over the same period in 2009, an increase of 7.6% over the first three quarters of 2009.

Viewing to Television continues at record levels, and with the Rugby World Cup in 2011 Television can be expected to continue to show strong growth.

Revenue figures are sourced from returns prepared by TVNZ, MediaWorks TV and SKY Network Television (including Prime).


I’m figuring out what I am going to do.

TV1 is airing the movie length premiere “This is Not My Life”, at the same time Prime is airing “Survivors”. Then there is the usual shows I watch on C4.

Now look at Wednesday night. There is nothing on except maybe “True Blood” which I’m not really into or “Castle” which I haven’t got round to seeing yet. V: The Remake sucks, so I’m not going there.

Back to Thursdays, my only option is to tape TV1 and switch back and forth between Prime and C4.

Does anyone know the name of the song that is played in the new Prime: 50 Years Of Television ad?  It starts with Doctor Who and then shows a clip from SGU and so on.  The lyrics I remember are:

Drifting out in space, Dry your eyes and fix your face, Nothing left to fear but the truth dear

Is anyone else looking for this song?

Help would be much appreciated!!!

update: The song is called Stars by Jay Price and you can get it here:


Despite last week’s TVNZ 50 Years special copping such a beating in the media following its screening, the network is planning another celebration special for late June.

TVNZ is piling together a celebration to mark the past 50 years of news and current affairs television in this country in spite of the fact last week’s show was savaged by television fans and critics.

Of course TVNZ are unfazed by the scorn, because the special managed to draw a massive audience and generated a bundle of advertising revenue for them.

The upcoming news special was initially vetoed by the network when planning the year’s celebrations but in the wake of the ratings hit last week TVNZ may well be simply looking to cash in a second time around.

The two-hour show is planned for 8.30pm on June 27, the same date and time Prime are marking their 50 Years celebrations.

So the Prime special, conceived more than a year ago, will now be going head to head with a TVNZ celebration knocked-up in a matter of weeks.

Prime programmer Karen Bieleski is unfazed however, laughing at TV One’s choice of time and calling it ridiculous.

Source: NZ Herald

PRIME’s coverage of the Olympic Games increased PRIME’s audience share by more than 39% compared to 2009.

Over 2.3 million kiwis viewed the Winter Olympics on PRIME – the Opening Ceremony alone reached an audience of more than 500,000 (all 5+) with the Closing Ceremony being viewed LIVE by over a quarter of million people.

The most popular events were Figure Skating which peaked with 20% of the audience (over 200,000 people), followed by Downhill Skiing and the Luge.

Why do we have to be subjected to idiots masked as sports presenters who think they’re so funny when all we want is some proper expert analysis/commentary on sport? I’m mainly talking about The Crowd Goes Wild. Why can’t they just give us a proper sports show? Are Sky TV really that mean-spirited that they want us to endure this lame show rather than give us a decent half hour review of recent sports games/competitions?

As part of Prime TV’s coverage of Winter Olympics they’ve also brought along some guy with black, thick-rimmed glasses to ask for their opinion. I have no idea who he is but from what is coming out of his mouth I’m guessing he thinks he’s funny.

Crowd Goes Wild and that guy have been the only blip on what has been decent coverage of the Winter Olympics by Prime.