Seven denies “acting coach” for Mark Ferguson

Seven has denied engaging an "acting coach" from NIDA for Mark Ferguson at Seven News.

2014-08-07_1253Seven has denied suggestions it has engaged an “acting coach” for Mark Ferguson at the Seven News desk.

News Corp is speculating a NIDA tutor has been helping him to “look more natural in his evening news anchor chair.”

A source said, “He is specifically being told how to fold and hold his hands, how to tilt his head and how to engage during live crosses,” with coaching in plain view of more than a dozen people.

But spokesman Simon Francis told the newspaper, “He has had no acting, voice or presentation lessons, or anything similar.”

Ferguson replaced Chris Bath in January, with Bath moved to Fridays and Saturdays.

Seven also denied changes were planned to the news management team despite Nine having won every week this year in both Sydney and Melbourne.

Nationally the contest is a little tighter, thanks to Seven’s dominance in Adelaide and Perth. As we are now past the half-way mark those 4 cities are done and dusted.

Brissy is still the swinging city where a winner will take longer to sort out.

15 Responses

  1. Yes Boy_wonder, I also scratched my head at the Kay/Rod move to weekends. Sharyn and Bill would be a much better fit for weekends and I still get the vibe that Kay is not happy reading on those days.

    Funny about the acting coach thing though, who knew networks had any spare cash to splash on these things? And news flash: what you are trying to teach here cannot be taught, you’ve either got it, or you don’t.

  2. Seven News only beat Nine when Ian Ross was hired. When Roscoe left of his own choosing the replacements didn’t have the same appeal.
    Now Seven are desperate for a POD… they proclaim they are Live – really , is that the best you can do? Or the equally stupid ” Seven News starts now.” Well it is 6 PM so it’s not a surprise fellas.
    Lots of people in News management trying to be smarter than they really are.
    Nine has stuck with Peter Overton whom personally I don’t find very watchable as he comes over a bit too earnest and a bit too ” just add gravitas “…
    Still like Juanita Phillips although the stupid “standing newsreader model” is absolutely ridiculous. Just give me the news, and please have a seat.

  3. I find 7 news in Sydney intense and dramatic – the opening sequence, the constant ‘breaking news’ graphics, the screen overcrowded with text graphics – it feels like it is constantly in a panic. When you watch 9 news or 10 in Sydney, there’s a much more professional and relaxed vibe. I feel 7 is struggling in Sydney, not just because Mark Ferguson clearly is not resonating with viewers, but also because the general overall format and presentation is extremey weak.

  4. Peter Oveeton, like Brian Henderson before him, has a warm and engaging personality who can be serious as needed as well as a bit cheeky.

    Ferguson is technically good but his smile is unconvincing and any warmth just doesnt get through the camera lens no matter how many years he’s been trying.

    The Networks conduct polls of viewers as to which TV personalities they like and dislike and I am surprised Seven is ignoring their results as well as the huge ratings gap.

  5. Content is certainly a factor in 7 News Sydney’s downward spiraling ratings but so too Mark Ferguson who doesn’t resonate with audience – he had the same problem at 9. Not leaning over would be a start. Big mistake replacing Bath.

  6. @ boy_wonder

    Chris Bath is an excellent newsreader however the ratings were only 60% of what Nine were getting. They have tried Mark Ferguson (who failed against Ian Ross on Seven when Mark was at Nine) and has again failed to deliver at Seven where they still only get 60% of Nine’s ratings.

  7. Brissy would not be the ‘Swinging City’ if they did not move Kay and Rod to Fri-Sat as they were claarly #1. Nothing QTQ9 news could do could come close to BTQ7…….until some idiot replaced the #1 team with Sharyn Gydella & Bill MacDonnald who was let go from Ten. 7 brought everything on themselves.
    I am not sure of the circumstances around Chris Bath being replaced but I would love to know.

  8. I always thought when he read to news on Nine he was great. I am not in Sydney so I have ever seen him read the news on Seven. Maybe there is a problem with Seven News Sydney.

  9. For many years the ABC had a voice coach for its news and current affairs staff in Sydney. Mark is a seasoned pro, i can’t see it being imposed on him at this point, unless it is contractual.

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