Practice Makes Perfect

032One week to go. Five more rehearsals. And we’ll be ready to roll on the 14th.

We’ve rehearsed WDSU’s newest newscast, WDSU News at 4, for the past two weeks. It’s been a wild, fun ride as we’ve watched the process unfold. Some people have asked me why we need three weeks of rehearsal time. It’s simple: No news outlet in New Orleans has ever attempted a newscast as technically challenging as this one. The first week was basically blocking shots and getting through pieces of the newscast. Week two was going through the newscast in real time and working out the kinks. The third week should be as close as possible to what the real thing will look like.

We have a daily meeting after the practice newscast to discuss what went right and what went wrong. Each day, the list of the “wrongs” gets shorter and the list of “rights” gets longer. Problems are identified and solutions are implemented. Some elements of the newscast have been changed completely, some have been eliminated and others have simply needed tweaking. In the end, we’ll hit the right mix of things to make the newscast successful.

033The hour-long newscast really moves, both literally and figuratively. The time flies by for Randi Rousseau and me because we are always on the go. Without giving away too much, I’ll say we don’t use the anchor desk at all and never sit down. I should use a pedometer to chart how many steps I take in 60 minutes. Also beginning on the 14th, I will anchor the 5 p.m. news with Camille Whitworth. I get to sit down for that one.

My last newscast at WESH was August 21 and I haven’t been on the air yet at WDSU, so I’m looking forward to getting this newscast on TV.

I hope you’ll join us for the big debut. If you don’t live in the New Orleans area, all of WDSU’s newscasts are streamed live at