Getting a chance to cover the Dove Awards is a privledge, but it’s not as glamorous as it seems. Just as any journalist, especially sports reporters, will tell you. As a former sportswriter, I can tell you it’s a long day covering a baseball game. You are at the stadium hours before game time, even before the athletes, and hours after everyone has left the stadium — but that’s for another post. This is about the Dove Awards. I don’t know if they do this for the Grammys, but here’s a look at what happens in the Doves’ pressroom.
We don’t get a seat in the venue — this year at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta — to watch the awards show, journalist are in a backroom, watching the show on a big screen TV. Even at the Grand Ole Opry, we were in a room below the stage area. I actually bought a ticket when I covered my first Dove Awards just so I could pop in and watch a bit of the show to get the feel for the show and the legendary Opry.
Usually tables are set up for journalists, especially ones that are working on deadline, along with power outlets for our many computers, phones, etc. This year, there were so many media passes given out tables were not available, just chairs facing a stage area. Luckily my pals in the press helped me set up my “nest” area along the wall. I used a piano bench as my table; Terry DeBoer used a chair as his table. And fortunately he had an extension cord as other journalists were plugging in to recharge phones and laptops. I had an extra phone charger, and I charged numerous phones through my computer. Here’s a pic of Ryan from Jesus Freak Hideout and how he rolls at the Doves.
So now after setting up shop in our makeshift “press row,” the Dove Awards began with the preshow presentation of awards. While the presentation was shown on the TV, once an artist is brought into the press area, the TV is turned down so we can take pictures of the artists and then ask questions. In the meantime, the show must go on, so awards are presented while we are interviewing and taking snaps. The funny part is after that artist leaves the press area most of the journalists are asking, “Who just won?” “Who performed?” It’s rather humorous trying to keep up and keep you the reader posted on what is happening.
And then there’s the “Are you tweeting?” “What did you tweet?” “I missed that, what happened?” “Do you have a list of winners?” “How did you do that?”
So as you can see I didn’t get to watch the show live while I was working, so I’m DVRing it tonight so I can see the performances. And you also get a glimpse of the camaraderie among reporters that tends to spread across a variety of events we cover.