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Thursday February 15, 2001

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New show hopes to stick around

By Lisa Lucas

Arizona Daily Wildcat

TV3's new variety show, "Fast Forward," is simply the first step in making the student-run television station at the UA "a first rate public access station that is open to students," said program coordinator Aaron Bilgrad.

TV3 is currently broadcast in residence halls across campus and reaches approximately 5,000 students. Broadcasting 24 hours a day, seven days a week, the station shows the College Television Network's music videos and sports recaps during the day, and dedicates about six hours a night to movies.

Bilgrad, a University of Arizona marketing and entrepreneurship junior, said he wants the station to be open for student input and access, allowing a creative outlet for students interested in television production within the UA community.

"Fast Forward" is one of these outlets, but attempts at student productions in the past have achieved limited success.

Previous student-run shows at TV3 include "Wrap Up" and the "Fun Fun News News Show," the latter of which was produced just last semester.

Mike Camarillo, broadcast advisor for TV3, said the reason the previous shows didn't work, due to a lack of equipment.

This semester, however - equipped with a new video camera, non-linear editing system and some microphones provided by Arizona Student Media - the show has a better chance for success.

Camarillo said that the station depends heavily on Video Services, located in the Harvill Building.

"We use their half-inch editing system and any type of technical support, professional support," he said. "They've been very instrumental in helping our students out."

The station is extremely grateful to all of those who have aided in the production of the new show.

Some of the key people in Video Services aiding in production are Joe Chitwood, assistant general manager, Tom Larochelle, television production manager, Don Rhodes, broadcast engineer and J.J. Weber, media specialist.

"Fast Forward" has had to struggle against a limited and overworked staff, instituting many of the producers to act in it as well.

Bilgrad said interest was higher in the early stages of "Fast Forward" but that interest has dwindled.

"From all those people (that I contacted to work on the show), about 50 people showed up to our first meeting," he said. "We lost about 60 percent at the next meeting and then another 30 (percent). We have about 10 people working on it now."

The large drop in participation could be due to the huge time commitment and the fact that none of the people working on the show get paid.

"We're very hungry while doing all these shoots," Bilgrad said.

Bilgrad said that they are looking for more volunteers. Meetings for the show are held every Wednesday at 4 p.m. in Harvill 452. Bilgrad encourages anyone interested in television production, cinematography or writing to attend a meeting, especially emphasizing his interest in writers.

"What my goal is, is to give these kids experience so they know how to take a creative vision and bring it to life - and do it, hopefully, in an original manner," Bilgrad said. "I want them to be original."