During many of the taping sessions for the new season of the UMIQ game show, students working with the show scrambled around scripts, questions, cameras and spotlights, all in an effort to ensure that everything went smoothly and that all of the planned improvements to the show were taking place.
“[Most of the time] we’re looking at a nice 12 hour day,” Lorri Kaye, UMIQ co-host, said.
Some of the major changes for the new season include a completely revamped set, new co-hosts and improved trivia questions that range from general academics to pop culture.
“Our goal is to really make the show something that students are going to want to watch,” Brad Ross, UMIQ co-host, said. “We’re going for more of an MTV look than a cable-access look.”
“There will be a lot of interaction between Brad and myself,” Kaye said.
“I’m going to make my co-host disappear,” interrupted Ross, a professional magician, who plans to incorporate some of his magic into their act.
According to the two co-hosts, Luis Santi, a new addition to the show, spent countless hours developing the graphic appeal of the show.
“He really took the look of the show from a college level to a professional level,” Ross said.
Last year marked the premier production of the UMIQ game show, and the crew has decided to focus on the best aspects from last year’s taping and incorporate them into a new frame while strengthening the areas that were not as effective in the previous season.
“All the work that it took to make them great last year is what drives them now,” Monica Fernandez, associate producer for the faculty, said. “The new co-hosts play off each other really well, we have new directors, new producers and the format has been changed to make it more appealing and much more professional.”
“We’re trying to liven up the show a little bit,” Gabriel Reiter, co-producer of the show, said.
“Last year’s look was more conservative – this year we’re trying to be more creative and flavor it up,” Richard Morrison, co-producer of the show, said. “I try to draw as much as I can from other game shows.”
Executive producer and faculty advisor to the show Sanjeev Chatterjee reflected on the atmosphere of this season’s preparation and credited the students with most of the work.
“I provide resources needed to make things happen and to serve as a sounding board, bringing up standards, whether relating to technical, content, or communication with the larger student body,” Chatterjee said.
Chatterjee says he has focused on encouraging students to think for themselves, rather than relying on direction from him, when making decisions.
Students who are working with the show appreciate Chatterjee’s approach.
“For us, it’s the best experience possible,” Reiter said. “You get to do things more like real life than anything else.”
Last year, UMIQ won the CBI award for best technical production and was a final runner-up for the Telly award.
This year, the show hopes to surpass its previous accomplishments.
“There won’t be a dull moment,” Fernandez said.
UMIQ will air every week on Mondays and Wednesdays at 7 p.m. starting Feb. 17 on UMTV Channel 24 and Channel 96 in the Gables.
Whitney Friedrich can be contacted at Witz615@aol.com.