Producer’s Log: Inside The #Chirpies

BY ALLISON WILSON | Ball State Sports Link | Executive Producer

The glitz. The glam. The Chirpies.

Sports Link senior director, Chris Taylor, and myself — of course holding the production book – for the 2017 Chirpies.

Everyday on the Ball State campus over 500 student athletes train to be positive representations for the campus and community both inside and outside of their sport. The Chirpies is an opportunity to give them a night off.

Last semester, I decided that I would take over the role as producer on behalf of Sports Link and ESPN3.

As producer, I was in charge of all aspects that go into the broadcast and in-house functions of the event.

This includes everything from overseeing pre-event planning, communicating through all parties about content updates and creating all video components for the event itself.

This year I was blessed to have a crew who was willing to take shares of the responsibility and get involved in pre-production, allowing me to delegate out the introduction video, sizzle reel and highlight package.

As the third year of the event, my main goal, as producer, was to upscale the event. Step one of this was getting a big act to perform. With someone like Chase Bryant, we were able to build up campus and community buzz on two fronts — those who would come for The Chirpies award show and those who would come for Chase Bryant.

Ultimately, we set a goal of having over 1,000 attendees in hopes a jump in attendance this year can set the event on the right track for bigger acts and more attendance in 2018.

National recording artist Chase Bryant kicked off the Chirpies with two hits.

In another effort to outdo last year’s event, I decided to edit all my video content with an “award show” look. I chose to do gold and glitter as the underlining theme.

I felt as though this was a a step away for the assumed sports look and instead brought it to more of an Emmys or Grammys feel. Even though this wasn’t the easiest option, in the end, I felt as though my efforts came across the way I had planned.

As any good producer should do, I have went back and followed the night on social media, talked with athletes about their feelings post-event and read through all the criticism. I understand  there were people who were disappointed with the event or with aspects of the event.

I want to take a minute to explain that despite all extra parties involved, this is ultimately a student run event. My crew and I are all students who take 16-18 credit hours, have continued responsibilities to Sports Link and try to live normal college student lives. We do not get paid.

I went back and added up all the hours I  put in and it came to over 60 hours pre-day of event. Having said that, day of event I held my crew for over 11 hours from set up to tear down.

I understand everyone might not like the music choice. I understand not everyone thought the jokes were funny. I understand some people felt the need to leave early.

However, for the sake of this event in the future, realize just how much goes into putting on a good show and being the only student run athletic award show in the country.


Author: Sports Link Staff

Sports Link showcases Cardinal student-athletes’ accomplishments on the field, in the classroom and within the surrounding community. Follow @bsusportslink on all social media platforms.

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