ScreenTalk: Ron Pledger

Ron Pledger
Got a major live event you want to put on television? Ron Pledger has long been one of the first people to get on the phone.

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Got a major live event you want to put on television? Ron Pledger has long been one of the first people to get on the phone. The MBE-awarded director has commanded live coverage of Sir Edmund Hillary’s funeral, Kiri Te Kanawa in concert, This is Your Life and roughly 20 Anzac Day ceremonies.

His screen career also encompasses church choirs, Canadian soap operas, the infamous GOFTA awards, and the madness of Top Town.

In this ScreenTalk, Pledger talks about:

  • How the music mad saxophone player walked into his first broadcasting job, at Radio 2ZB in Wellington
  • July 1, 1961: on location for Wellington’s first night of television
  • Scoring a gig on Canadian-shot soap Moment of Truth
  • Moving into directing
  • Golden days in the TVNZ entertainment department, where he created programmes showcasing jazz and dance
  • Rushing around NZ for town versus town hit Top Town
  • His take on the infamous, booze-laden Gofta awards of 1987
  • The key to pulling off This is Your Life
  • How he sets about covering major live events
  • His biggest live gig to date: three hour epic Tomb of the Unknown Warrior
  • Travelling the country for Praise Be
  • Leadership lessons learned from his time in television

This video is available on YouTube to embed and distribute via a Creative Commons licence.

NZ On Screen: Editing - Ian Pryor. Camera - Jess Charlton

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