The First Class of Radio, a radio broadcasting empowerment program took place this past weekend at the University of Johannesburg Kingsway Campus. Geared towards those who are interested in going into the radio industry – behind the mic or behind the scenes – the event brought together various media practitioners to share, teach, engage and give a better understanding of the industry.

 

(MacFarlane Loleli, Shane Ngwenya and Greg Maloka)

 

Founder of the program, Kaya FM’s The Great Starter presenter, Shane Ngwenya, says “the program was born out of the fact that I had difficulty finding someone to mentor me when I wanted to get into radio. I lacked the necessary information, so I decided to bring together radio personalities so that they can share their personal experiences – the dos and the don’ts; and groom those interested in getting into the industry”.

Supported by Kaya FM as media partner, the event had speakers such as Greg Maloka, Managing Director of Kaya FM, Ayanda MVP, radio presenter at  947, radio veteran David O’Sullivan as well as Hanyani Mangwani  professional voice over artist just to name a few.

“The broadcasting industry is more different today than any other point in history. There have been so many dramatic changes; radio is not what it was when we joined the industry”, said Greg Maloka.

Maloka, who is a seasoned radio broadcaster added that back in the day radio was more focused on creating a platform for people to talk about real life issues but now it is more about profits, instant life and what’s live and trending.


“We have to make sure as the leaders of the industry that we do not see radio as just a form of business and generating money but rather as an influential platform. As radio stations we also have to focus more on infotainment rather than entertainment”.

On prioritizing listeners and ensuring that content is about them; Maloka cited that the industry has instead become more about competition between radio stations to be on top, and focusing on who is the best.

Young female radio presenter, Ayanda MVP advised everyone that it is very important as a radio personality to always stick to who you are and not to try be someone you are not. “You have to be unique in your own way, there are a lot of people who are already in the industry and those who want to be in the industry. What’s going to make you special? A lot of radio presenters’ careers crash because of lack of identity; do not be defined by what’s going around because things will always happen”, she says.

Ayanda started her career at a campus radio station of the University of Pretoria which is known as Tuks FM, from there she worked at YFM with the likes of Bonang Matheba, DJ Warras , Thando Thabethe and so forth. She then moved to 947 where she is currently doing the 10:00-14:00 weekdays slot.

(John Perlman presenting at the first class of radio)

 

Kaya FM’s Programs Manager, Neil Johnson, shared information on how to put together a demo and advised the audience to be as authentic as possible and not to imitate other radio personalities.

“Have a format of how you live your life. Always be organized, respect time in everything you do and never think you’re smarter than your listeners”.

Johnson said the station has an internship program that takes eight candidates per year and advised those interested to apply at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Radio veteran John Perlman shared on how to get into the industry and advised on how to conduct a good radio interview. “Go to any radio station and be willing to do anything. The more you learn, the more you know, and the sharper you are. Be interested in the next person (interviewee) rather than yourself”.

News anchor and radio presenter MacFarlane Moleli brought words of encouragement that left the audience charged up and ready to take on the industry. “Always push the mold and break boundaries. News bringers are the midwives of history”.

 

The radio class is an annual event; be sure to be on the lookout for the 2018 instalment. The program will hopefully unleash new talent and set a high standard in radio broadcasting through its wealth of wisdom imparted by the veterans and practitioners it brings.

 

 

By Bradley Brizzy

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