Q (radio show)
|Running time||90 minutes|
|Home station||CBC Radio One|
|Syndicates||Public Radio International (USA)|
|Recording studio||Canadian Broadcasting Centre, Toronto|
|Air dates||since April 16, 2007|
Q (styled q) is a Canadian arts magazine show produced by and airing on CBC Radio One, with syndication to public radio stations in the United States through Public Radio International. The program mainly features interviews with prominent cultural and entertainment figures, though subjects and interviewees also deal with broader cultural topics such as their social, political and business aspects, as well as weekly panels on sports and media issues on Mondays and Fridays respectively.
Though not the highest-rated show on CBC Radio One (The Current and As It Happens hold that distinction), Q is the highest rated show in its timeslot in CBC history, surpassing even Peter Gzowski who previously hosted the second hour of Morningside during the slot. The show is also regarded as standing out in CBC Radio One's schedule through attracting a younger, more socially media adept audience than other CBC Radio programming.
Q launched in April 2007 and was hosted by Jian Ghomeshi until October 2014.
Shad was chosen by the CBC in March 2015 as Q's new permanent host. His official debut as host was April 20. The show was also re-branded as q at the same time. In August 2016, the CBC announced that Shad will be replaced as host by Tom Power, formerly the host of Radio 2 Morning, in the fall.
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The program airs live Monday to Friday at 10:00 a.m. (10:30 NT), and an abbreviated edition of the morning show is then repeated 12 hours later. The program runs for 90 minutes, except for Fridays, which runs for two hours and includes the "Friday Live" segment. The evening repeat runs for one hour, although due to lesser time restraints (such as less time lost to news breaks) it is able on most days to air all of the feature content from the 90-minute daytime edition, although some shorter interstitial segments are edited out. Stations carrying the show in the United States also broadcast the one-hour edition.
On Fridays, the show includes a theme called "Friday Live", where featured musicians are invited for an interview primarily as the opening segment with live performances throughout the program. Weekly contributors include Elvira Kurt, with her "Cultural Hall of Shame" segment, and Torquil Campbell, with his "Rant or Rave" segment.
The name was chosen by the staff of the show from a list they themselves had compiled. A test run of the show was made using the name Radar. Other possible names (some clearly tongue-in-cheek) included "State-of the-Arts in Canada", "Awesometown", "Afternoon Delight", "Smells like Canada", "Full Duplex Repeater", "Skybox Three" (the room in Toronto's Rogers Centre where much of the show was created), "Ghomer's Pile", or one even closer to Jian Ghomeshi, the show host of Iranian descent, "Royal Canadian Air Farsi". Names a little closer to the mark included Studio Q and The Cue. According to Ghomeshi, "A couple of the ... suggestions came close", when the name 'Q' was brought up "there was a pause in the room and [the Q team] went 'Yes, that's it.' It felt like the right name. It's an enigmatic letter [they] hope will become associated with the show."
Beginning in 2013, a one-hour weekly spinoff series, Q The Music, was added to the CBC Radio 2 schedule, airing a selection of interviews and performances by musicians previously broadcast on the daily program. On April 15, 2015, the show changed its name to the lower case q.
2009 Thornton interview
On April 8, 2009, Billy Bob Thornton and his musical group The Boxmasters made an appearance on Q that was widely criticized and received international attention after Thornton was persistently unintelligible and discourteous to Ghomeshi. Thornton eventually explained he had "instructed" the show's producers to not ask questions about his movie career. Ghomeshi had mentioned Thornton’s acting in the introduction. Thornton had also complained Canadian audiences were like "mashed potatoes without the gravy". The following night, opening for Willie Nelson at Toronto's Massey Hall, Thornton said mid-set he liked Canadians but not Ghomeshi, which was greeted with boos and catcalls. The Boxmasters did not continue the tour in Canada as, according to Thornton, some of the crew and band had the flu.
Ghomeshi and comedian Alan Park made a mock follow-up interview promoting the 2009 Air Farce Live television special. The sketch has Ghomeshi asking Thornton (Alan Park) about his plans for New Years, leading to the actor responding similar answers to the April interview. The two continue to banter until they break character and laugh around.
After his departure, the program was hosted by a rotating series of guest hosts, including existing CBC staffers such as Brent Bambury, Piya Chattopadhyay, Tom Power, Allan Hawco and Talia Schlanger, and outside figures such as Wab Kinew, Rachel Giese, Damian Abraham, Candy Palmater, Shad, Daniel Richler and Sean Rameswaram. Many of the guest hosts were effectively auditioning for a place on the shortlist of potential new permanent hosts.
During the transition process, the CBC faced controversy when it announced that it intended to remove all Ghomeshi-hosted segments of the program from its online archive of previously-broadcast content. They ultimately reversed this decision in the face of public disapproval, allowing the content to remain accessible online for the standard two-year period applicable to all other CBC content, but reaffirming that no content hosted by Ghomeshi will be re-aired on terrestrial radio.
Late in the guest-hosting phase, Measha Brueggergosman and Kevin Smith each hosted a single show as part of a "Thursday surprise" feature, in which the show would be turned over for one day to a guest host whose identity had not been announced in advance.
The "final five" shortlist of host candidates comprised Shad, Palmater, Richler, Rameswaram and Power. Shad's selection was announced on March 10, 2015. His debut as host was on April 20, with a live broadcast from the CBC's Glenn Gould Studio. Producers have indicated that under Shad, the program will increase its focus on music and will adopt a looser, less structured format.
Concurrently with Shad's debut as host, the program also unveiled new theme music composed by Canadian musician Bahamas.
Shad was replaced with Tom Power in August 2016, as the program's ratings had declined significantly over the period when he hosted. Shad remains in negotiations with the CBC to host a different program for the network.
The show began to be syndicated in the fall of 2014 for weekend airings to commercial television stations in the United States through PPI (the former Program Partners), a major syndicator of Canadian programming into the American television market. Due to Ghomeshi's dismissal from the CBC mere weeks after its premiere, the PPI version of the show abruptly had to feature a 'best-of' compilation of the week's interviews and musical performances (similar to some sports radio show television simulcasts) with the show's interim hosts instead with Ghomeshi's segments completely removed, rather than the intended format of replays of archival content with Ghomeshi throughout several years. The show was effectively relaunched in early May 2015 with Shad taking a greater role in the PPI version of the series.
- Q Public Radio International. Retrieved Oct. 27, 2014.
- Zekas, R. (May 1, 2010). "Minding His Peace & Q's Artist in Residence Jian Ghomeshi, Host of CBC Radio's Q, Lives Quietly in a Victorian Loft in Old Cabbagetown.". Toronto Star.
- "CBC pics rapper Shad as new host of Q". The Globe and Mail, March 11, 2015.
- Jacques Gallant (15 April 2015). "CBC rebrands Q as q". thestar.com. Toronto Star. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
- "CBC's Q replacing Shad as host". CBC News, August 15, 2016.
- Cobb, C. (May 5, 2007). "CBC radio reconsiders its audience". Star. Phoenix.
- The Story of Q from assortednonsense.com
- "Billy Bob Thornton Gives Bizarre Interview On Canadian Radio". The Huffington Post. April 8, 2009. Retrieved October 2, 2009.
- "Billy Bob Thornton has a Joaquin Phoenix moment". The Sydney Morning Herald. April 10, 2009. Retrieved October 2, 2009.
- "Thornton obnoxious in CBC interview". UPI. April 9, 2009.
- "Thornton clashes with radio host". BBC. April 9, 2009.
- Schmidt, Veronica (April 9, 2009). "Billy Bob Thornton does a Joaquin Phoenix on Canadian radio". The Times. London. Retrieved April 26, 2010.
- Kreps, Daniel (April 8, 2009). "Billy Bob Thornton Attempts To Outdo Joaquin Phoenix In CBC Interview". Rolling Stone.
- Wallace, Kenyon; Raju Mudhar (April 10, 2009). "Billy Bob not done with the barbs". The Star. Toronto.
- Marlow, Iain; Andrew Chung (April 10, 2009). "Billy Bob ends Canadian tour". The Star. Toronto.
- "Jian Ghomeshi, host of Q, no longer with CBC". CBC News. Retrieved October 26, 2014.
- Borel, Kathryn (2 December 2014). "Jian Ghomeshi harassed me on the job. Why did our radio station look the other way?". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 December 2014.
- "CBC ponders new name for ‘Q’ in light of Jian Ghomeshi scandal". CityNews, November 12, 2014.
- "And then there was Shad: inside the search for the new host of Q". The Globe and Mail, March 13, 2015.
- "CBC Radio agrees to leave Q archives online after listener backlash". Canada.com, December 23, 2014.
- "Rapper Shad named new host of CBC's Q". Toronto Sun, March 11, 2015.
- Q TV at YouTube
- "Q with Jian Ghomeshi". PPI Releasing. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
- "Syndicated 'Q' To Debut This Week". TVNewsCheck. 14 May 2015. Retrieved 15 May 2015.