There are many different routes you can go into in a career in radio. Some people are production whizzes, others have an ear for a hit song. One of the most integral parts of the station is the newsreader. The job of the newsreader is an incredibly interesting one.
To get into many journalistic roles, you may need to do a course at a university or college of further education and get a qualification. This is not only to make sure you have the correct skills but also so that you don’t break any media laws. Speak to colleges that offer media degrees to find the course that’s perfect for you.
As a journalist, you need to be familiar with current events. Keep on top of news stories by having various outlet’s applications send notifications directly to your phone. As well as that, using Twitter can be an excellent way to find breaking stories and to connect with your fellow journos.
If you’re applying to a local radio station, have an ear to the ground and connect with news in the area. You may hear many stories by word of mouth, especially in tight-knit communities or smaller towns. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to find out more. This may be hard when you start out if you’re shy, but you’ll learn how to put on a “journalistic front” and nothing will phase you after a while.
Reading and understanding the news is important in itself, but you also need to listen to it. Styles may vary between stations and mediums, but generally speaking there is a certain “newsreader” style you need to nail. Try listening to news broadcasts and copy the tone and deliverance of the reader. Then, re-write an article into a shorter script and perform it. Getting used to this style of reading is essential to become a great newsreader.
You’ll need to create a demo to showcase your talent in terms of reading the news and how your voice would sound on air. Here’s a guide we created on how to put the perfect demo together. This guide is more general and doesn’t focus on news reading specifically, but it will help you smash the basics.
For your news reading demo, make sure to read some news stories. Vary the types of news between hard news stories and softer stories. You can also cover showbiz etc depending on what station you’re applying to. Make sure to structure the demo like an official news bulletin, with more serious stories at the start of the tape and less serious ones as it goes on.
If you listen to radio reports, you’ll hear that the reader is often accompanied by a piece of audio. This is usually a short clip of an interview or a comment from the individual the story is about. Try to incorporate this into the demo to make it sound even better. The finished tape should not be longer than about 3-4 minutes.