Lights, Camera, READ!
I’ve always wondered what it would be like to be on TV: what it’s like behind the sets, what does a “green” room look like, and how does it all comes together to make a show. I found out this week when I became one of six kids in Al’s Book Club for Kids. The show airs once a month on NBC’s Today Show.
Al Roker, who is really funny and super nice, is the host of the book club. Each month we will meet to discuss a different author and book. We also get to ask the featured author questions.
The whole experience was very exciting for me. After arriving the morning of the show, I was taken into the studio’s green room, which, by the way, is NOT green! It’s the room where guests can relax before going on the air.
As soon as I got there a woman approached me. I recognized her from a photo on the back of a fantastic book I had just read: she was the day’s featured author, Michelle Paver!
As we chatted, she said that I reminded her of herself when she was my age. She signed my copy of her book and stamped it with an awesome wolf footprint that she had traced from an actual wolf track!
Then I joined the other kids on a couch. As we started talking, I knew I was making five new friends. The producer, Amanda Marshall, took us upstairs where there was another smaller green room that our parents waited in while we went to the set. I was so excited because I really loved the book we were discussing and I’ve always dreamed of being on TV. I was also having fun getting to know the other kids.
We were taken to the set for the Book Club and told which bean bag chairs to sit on. We were given microphones and were reminded to speak loudly and clearly. Ms. Paver gave us some cool artifacts to pass around that she had collected on her journeys. She handed us a real stone-age chiseled axe head, an antler, and reindeer hide mittens. The mittens were the same the type Torak, the main character in the book, would have worn.
Then Mr. Roker came in and started joking around with us. He told Tatiana, who was wearing the mittens at the time, that she should have a doctor check out her skin condition. He made us all laugh! I suggested that we all wish each other good luck and so we counted down and said good luck in unison. Then the crew counted down from 10 seconds, 9 seconds…down to 1 second and then “LIVE” and we knew we were on the air!
After the show was over we met up with our parents back in the green room. We were all excited and happy after the tension of being on the air. In the green room the Ms. Paver talked with us some more and we took pictures with her and with each other.
Ms. Paver is so interesting and definitely one of the best writers whose work I’ve ever read!! I had so many questions to ask her and she was happy to answer them. I was fascinated with how she writes and what inspires her. I had so many questions that she agreed to let me interview her just for Scholastic! I can't wait!
The Today Show gave each of us the other books in the series—five books in all! I did not expect that, but it sure was awesome!! I’ve already read up to chapter four in the second book, Spirit Walker. I’m writing a book review on Wolf Brother because I have to tell you guys how great this book is!
Photo: Danielle Azzolina (front left) and the other members of Al Roker's Book Club for Kids in the Green Room at NBC studios in New York with author Michelle Paver. (Photo SKPC)