Happy birth­day To us

TV Times - - Interview - NEW EN­TER­TAIN­MENT The One Show MON-FRI / BBC1 / 7.00PM Judy Ewens

Matt Baker and Alex Jones toast 10 years of suc­cesses for The One Show

As The One Show marks its 10th birth­day on Tues­day with a look back at se­lected sto­ries from its first decade, we join in the cel­e­bra­tions.

For the past five years, Matt Baker, 38, and Alex Jones, 39, have pre­sented the magazine show which goes out live each week­day to an au­di­ence of five mil­lion view­ers. Be­fore the pair tucked into birth­day cake, we asked them to tell us the se­cret of the pro­gramme’s suc­cess and re­veal their high­lights so far…

Why do you think the show is so pop­u­lar?

Matt: It’s the con­ver­sa­tion you would want to have over the gar­den gate or at the bar in the pub. Also, if you’re bored of a par­tic­u­lar item, you know that af­ter three-and-a-half min­utes we’re go­ing to go on to some­thing dif­fer­ent. And be­cause it’s live it seems that every­body is en­joy­ing the show at ex­actly the same time, so there’s a real sense of com­mu­nity while you’re watch­ing it. It’s per­fect for all ages. Whether it’s bed­time telly for some, or the first thing you watch when you get in from work, we try to cater to ev­ery­one. What’s the se­cret to your on-screen part­ner­ship?

Alex: It wouldn’t work if we didn’t get on like a house on fire. It also helps that we’ve been do­ing it for such a long time, so we know each other in­side out. We know a lot of stuff about each other that we can bring up in the pro­gramme, so when we talk to a Hol­ly­wood A-lis­ter or a mu­si­cian or a co­me­dian, I’ll know where Matt is go­ing with a cer­tain line of ques­tion­ing be­cause of his in­ter­ests, and in the same way he’ll know where I’m go­ing. We also both want the best pos­si­ble show to go out ev­ery even­ing. What would you say are each other’s best points? Alex: Matt is very re­li­able, very pro­fes­sional and he’s also very funny. It’s just know­ing that the per­son sit­ting by your side has got your back and will step in if you need help, and vice versa. We trust each other. Matt: Al will al­ways look for the good in peo­ple. She’s a very happy soul. She’ll make sure ev­ery­one is all right, and that’s a won­der­ful qual­ity to have.

What’s the key to get­ting a good in­ter­view?

Matt: With­out a doubt it’s lis­ten­ing. That way you can pick up on some­thing a per­son might have said that is in­trigu­ing, or is some­thing that you know view­ers are go­ing to want to hear more about, and maybe take the in­ter­view in a slightly dif­fer­ent direc­tion to what you had planned. You have lots of ‘non-celebri­ties’ on the show – how do you put them at ease?

Alex: Ob­vi­ously, we get re­ally fa­mous peo­ple on the sofa. But our show is also made up of or­di­nary peo­ple who have done ex­tra­or­di­nary things or have been through re­ally tough times. Our job is to em­pathise and to get the au­di­ence to share in their pain or joy or what­ever it is they’re talk­ing about. To us, these peo­ple are as im­por­tant, if not more im­por­tant, than the celebrity guests.

Do you like do­ing live TV?

Alex: Matt and I both pre­fer the live half an hour to any other part of the process, be­cause there’s al­ways a lot of spon­tane­ity to it. When we go on air, that’s when we come into our own and we re­ally en­joy our­selves.

And what do you do at the end of the show when you go off-air? Alex: We run for the car park, get in our cars and go home. We’re very rock ’n’ roll! Matt and I are both pretty much home birds. We en­joy our time at work, but when it’s done we’re happy to go home, put our feet up and have a cup of tea.

Matt and Alex dress up to cel­e­brate the show’s first decade Ex-one hosts Adrian Chiles and Chris­tine Bleak­ley

Be­cause it’s live, it seems every­body is en­joy­ing the show at ex­actly the same time, so there’s a real sense of com­mu­nity

matt

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