Ipswich student fulfils Eurovision dreams
FORMER Ipswich Grammar School student Riley Wilton is one of six University of Southern Queensland students working with the SBS to bring Eurovision - Austraila Decides to the nation's TV screens.
Mr Wilton, who studies Television and Radio at USQ Springfield, said it was a fantastic opportunity to get real-world experience and rub shoulders with industry professionals.
"I am really excited as I have watched Eurovision for as long as I can remember, so when this opportunity came up I couldn't believe my luck,” the aspiring radio presenter from Deebing Heights said.
"It's the first Eurovision show on Australian soil so I'm very honoured and grateful to be part of it.
"It's going to be a massive show and an amazing experience, and a good chance for me to hone my skills, especially if I decide to go into television after I graduate.”
Helping to ensure the broadcast runs smoothly the group of USQ students will be working with SBS and production partner Blink TV on the live television final.
The six students including Mr Wilton are Tash Rossetto, Hayden Howett, Adam Sekli, Jasmin Brough and Gabrielle Pratt. They will serve in a variety of roles, from camera assistants to editing and cable hands.
Hosted on the Gold Coast, Eurovision - Australia Decides will showcase some of the country's biggest acts, singing original compositions, for their chance to fly the flag for Australia at the Eurovision Song Contest 2019, which will be held in Israel in May.
Among the acts are award-winning artist Kate Miller-Heidke, rock music icon Ella Hooper, much-loved indie pop band Sheppard and classical crossover artist Mark Vincent.
In the lead up to the national selection show, some of the students worked alongside Blink TV filming entrant Electric Fields debut their Eurovision - Australia Decides song 2000 and Whatever at the Woodford Festival on New Year's Eve.
Creative Director of Eurovision - Australia Decides Paul Clarke said he was impressed by the energy and commitment shown by the USQ students.
"We are thrilled to be able to offer these students the opportunity to be a part of this historic television music event and bring this energy to our show,” he said.
"It's important the next generation of broadcast operators and technicians get real life exposure and experience first-hand how important it is to work well in a team and perform under pressure.
"This opportunity will give them invaluable insights into what goes into a live television broadcast, which will stand them in good stead for a career in the industry.”
USQ's Film, Television and Radio program is known for its practical focus with students learning to produce content for a range of media while having access to industry-standard equipment and facilities.
Eurovision fans will be glued to their television sets when the first-ever national selection contest, Eurovision - Australia Decides, airs on SBS tonight at 7.30pm.