Swept Away TV
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Swept Away TV

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The best kept secret in music


"Their Music TV Show lets 'em flirt with Fame"

Posted on Mon, Sep. 22, 2003


Their music TV show lets 'em flirt with fame

The program, 'Swept Away TV,' has a laid-back, funny format that makes interviews easy for the kids and their subjects.



The pizza was cold and the star was waiting in his bus behind the club, but the sound system still wasn't right.

Something was causing feedback -- interference between the speakers and the microphones -- which left Jeff Hendler, 18, scrambling.

''There's always some problem -- sometimes it goes smooth and it's really nice, but that's like one in 20 shows,'' Hendler said. He conferred in serious tones with Zach Rich, a 16-year-old with spiky hair, low-slung khakis and Converse sneakers who'd arrived, a bit late, from North Broward Preparatory School with Nicole Shevloff, 15.

Shevloff was missing English class to be here, the dimly-lit front room of Club Ovation in Boynton Beach. This was fine with her, of course -- she'd far rather work on Swept Away TV, the music television show Rich's older sisters started four years ago.

The 30-minute program -- written, edited, produced and directed by teens, with more than 70 kids involved -- started airing on WLRN-TV's community access channel this season in addition to its original home on BRET, Rich's local Boca Raton cable station. On Oct. 1, Swept Away begins a daily run on WLRN-TV.

''Music's my entire life,'' Shevloff said. ``It's so much easier to stay focused here than in school.''

On a recent afternoon, the group was preparing a press conference for student journalists with Andrew W.K., a Detroit rocker whose music blends heavy metal and pop.

''His live shows are sick, man,'' described J.J. Rassiere, 18, a new addition to the Swept Away TV crew. A few of them planned to stop by Andrew W.K.'s Club Ovation concert later that night, and the footage will air as soon as Hendler and Rich finish editing.

Their easy, joking style puts interview subjects at ease -- chatting with John Mayer one year before his Grammy win, joking with band Papa Roach about its unlikely name, or questioning Avril Lavigne on her holiday plans.

''The majority of bands are excited to do the interviews,'' Shevloff said. ``The show is funny -- it makes people watch because they're just totally themselves.''

Swept Away TV started with Rich's sisters -- Jaime, now 22, and Amanda, 19, whose two-person pop band caught the eye of Boca Raton Educational Television. Hendler was volunteering at the station when their show began, and it quickly took off.

With his sisters at college and law school, Zach Rich has inherited the show -- ''shooting or editing something every waking hour,'' he said -- while his mother, Nancy Rich, continues to organize behind the scenes.

The cast tends to favor up-and-coming bands, and their own music tastes vary. Shevloff raved last week about punk band Mae, and a surprisingly ''nice'' interview with New York-based pop artists Brand New.

''You've got to understand that Nicole is obsessed with every band we interview,'' one of her friends joked.

''No,'' she responded. ``I just love music.''

That was Nick Corirossi's cue to announce that he doesn't love music at all -- doesn't even like it too much, other than '80s hits and some rap. So Corirossi, 16, is in charge of movies. That's limited to reviews so far, he said, because studios tend to treat him and his friends like ''little kids'' when they ask for interviews.

But they don't get that reaction too often.

After hours of preparation for last week's press conference, the lights were in place and the sound problem was fixed, thanks to Jaime Rich, who'd driven up from the University of Miami law school.

Shevloff took the microphone, Zach stood behind the crowd, watching. They'd have to leave early for another interview, but for now, the press conference was on.

Andrew W.K. -- clad in sweats with long, scraggly brown hair -- took the Club Ovation stage to applause from the dozens of student journalists the Swept Away crew had assembled.

''It's great to be back on Swept Away,'' he said.




• Swept Away TV airs on WLRN-TV, channel 36, at 1:30 p.m. Tuesdays, 10:30 a.m. Wednesdays, 9 p.m. Fridays and noon Saturdays. Starting Oct. 1: you can catch the teens' music television show at 9:30 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays; 2:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays.


• It's on BRET, channels 54, 62 or 19 at 8 p.m. on Mondays and at 10:30 a.m. on Saturdays.

- The Miami Herald

"Sisters Swept Away to TV"

Sisters Swept Away To TV

Two Palm Beach County students just wrapped production on the first season of their new talk show, Swept Away TV. In a story reminiscent of a Hollywood discovery, Jaime and Amanda Rich, two talented local young ladies, were singing at party when they were approached by a local producer and offered their own television series. The girls jumped right on it. Not only did they recognize an opportunity to showcase their own talent, they realized the potential to contribute to their community. Since that day last fall, they have been hard at work on their teen- oriented talk show, Swept Away TV. In fact, Amanda and Jaime were recently awarded the prestigious President Bush Student Service Award for outstanding community service. Swept Away TV is on summer hiatus and will resume production in late August. Teens interested in volunteering can contact Amanda via their website www.sweptawayonline.com
- Palm Beach County Film Commission

"Florida teen show interviews 12 Multi-Platinum Artists"

Florida Teen Show Interviews 12 Multi-Platinum artists including 3 of the Grammy Nominees for Best New Artist
Florida teens take music television into their own hands and after 3 seasons, have picked a lot of winners...long before the artists ever appeared on tv or were heard on radio.

(Boca Raton, 1-31-03) The reporters average 15 years old, the cameramen 16, the floor manager 13, but they’ve got a knack for picking winners in the music business. In 3 seasons of local South Florida television, the Swept Away TV teens have interviewed 12 multi-platinum artists, most of them before their music was ever heard on local radio. At the top of their list, Singer-songwriters John Mayer, Michelle Branch, Vanessa Carlton and Avril Lavigne and that’s just for starters!

Sisters Jaime,22 and Amanda Rich,18, founded the show and created the non-profit 501c(3) organization in order to give other teens a shot at learning to produce, film, direct and edit their own programs. When they left for college in Orlando, a gang of younger teens took over the production of the show. Their 16 year old brother Zach, 16 year old Nick Corirossi, 16 year old Michelle Nash,13 year old Gaby Wagner,12 year old Brittany Rich, 16 year old Erica Connelly, 17 year old Sam Retteen, and 17 year old Jeff Hendler recruited teenagers from Miami to Ft Pierce. The teens put together a weekly show centered on the music that they enjoy, from developing artists everywhere. The teens select the artists they would like to interview and work through the artist’s manager or record company to make it happen.

Amanda Rich remembers,”One of Jaime’s friends had a boyfriend who knew John Mayer’s road manager. This was back in 2001 before his album was released on Aware. She turned us on to him and we started trying to arrange an interview with him . It took 6 months but we finally were in the same place at the same time. He wasn’t on the radio, mtv or vh1 at that time, but we loved his music and were determined that everyone should hear him! The interview is amazing and he’s a brilliant songwriter. Now he’s a 2 time Grammy nominee for best new artist.”

The Swept Away gang has a website where many of the interviews can be downloaded and watched. The website address is www.sweptawaytv.com. The gang also welcomes suggestions from other teens about who they’d like to see on the show and on the website.

“We even have our own American Idol contestant, Bettis Richardson who will compete on the American Idol show the week of February 4th. Bettis performed on the very first episode of Swept Away TV back in 2000 and we’re very proud of him. We’ve got everyone watching and voting for him, “added Jaime Rich.

For more information about how you can be involved with Swept Away TV, visit their website at www.sweptawaytv.com or email showhosts@sweptawayonline.com.

- PR web

"Second Season Teen Music Show"

Teens produce 39 episodes of TV SHOW, Write Free booklet for other teens in media

Teens produce 39 episodes of TV SHOW, Write Free booklet for other teens in media
Added : (Thu Mar 07 2002)
A new booklet written by the producers of Swept Away Television guides teens through the hard parts of working with the media. The authors, Amanda(17) and sister Jaime Rich of Boca Raton, Florida, should know. With their teen cast and crew, they’ve created 2 seasons of local television with a solid following.

Swept Away Television is written, filmed, produced and edited by teenagers 13-19. Far from slick, the show is produced on a shoe string budget. The cast and crew volunteer as do all of the varied guests. Their makeshift studio is located in a community theater and pieces of the set are stored in the Rich family garage between shoots. The freedom to create and try new ideas has spawned 30 minutes of interesting television.

"We’ve learned so much about digital video, sound, editing, and camerawork during the past 2 seasons. Hopefully now after 39 episodes we’ve figured out enough that we can prevent some things from happening to other kids ",said Amanda, 17.

"Our show is about what teens want to watch. We’ve been incredibly lucky to interview many recording artists like SUM41, New Found Glory, and Michelle Branch. Our interviews are relaxed because the artist knows they are talking to real fans. They aren’t afraid to open up to us because we’re on their side," added Jaime.

A recent episode featuring recording artist John Mayer proved to be so popular that teachers in 2 different schools showed the entire episode to their classes. Amanda Rich interviewed the talented, 24 year old Columbia Records artist, before his show in West Palm Beach. Mayer was not hesitant to wax eloquently to his teen interviewer, about the meanings of his lyrics on his release Room for Squares. The interview and clips from his performances aired in early February and the show is still getting emails asking for a repeat airing.

The next project for sisters Rich is the treatment for a new television show they’ve created. Taking a cue from their experiences over the past 2 years, Amanda and Jaime wrote the treatment complete with sample episode, copyrighted and registered the treatment with the WGA.

As soon as the treatment was finished, Amanda sent it off to Los Angeles to a company whose name is synonymous with contemporary television. She was delighted to receive a phone call several days later filled with interest from the firm.

"So far there has been a tremendous response to our new project. We’re talking to everyone right now and we’ll see what develops from that, Amanda explained. Our new project is written on a national scale and joins us with teens everywhere."

To receive an free copy of the Teens in the Media brochure, visit the Swept Away website at www.sweptawayonline.com and drop any of the staff members an email.

Swept Away Television is a project of BRET located in Boca Raton Florida. Portions of the episodes of Swept Away Television can be downloaded as quicktime movies on the website www.sweptawayonline.com. The show airs in Palm Beach County Adelphia Cable on Saturday mornings at 11:00am.

- The Press Box UK

"Sister Act"

Sister Act.(production of 'The Whatever Show,' which is for teenage girls)
Girls' Life, Feb, 2001

Get ready to be Swept Away by sisters Jaime, 20, and Amanda Rich, 16. They've already made a mark in their home state of Florida with their weekend morning program The Whatever Show for 'tweens 8 to 14. Their little sis Brittany, 10, provided the inspiration, and they started airing contests, interviews with boy bands, movie reviews and celebrity makeovers for Florida's BRET channel. "We especially have fun with the makeovers--turning teens into Christina Aguilera and Ricky Martin," says Jaime. She and Amanda hope a major network will sign their show next season. And besides their TV gig, the girls have a band! Swept Away has recorded its first demo CD. They started out singing Spice Girls songs at birthday parties, which led to appearances on Jenny Jones and Disney Channel's 2 Hour Tour. Soon after, they took off for a radio tour. So, can the sisters pick between TV and music? "We can do both!" they insist. Now, that's entertainment.

COPYRIGHT 2001 Monarch Avalon, Inc.
COPYRIGHT 2001 Gale Group - Girl's Life Magazine

"Mosh See TV"

Liz Doup Staff Writer. South Florida Sun - Sentinel. Fort Lauderdale, Fla.: Aug 18, 2003. pg. 1.D
Full Text (1443 words)
Copyright 2003 by the Sun-Sentinel)

Nothing distracts them.

Not the bottles flying over the crowd's heads.

Or the volleyballs.

Or the body surfers, landing in the arms of security guards just inches from them.

Nope, the video crew -- a trio of South Florida teens taping bands for their TV show -- is all business.

"You have to realize that, yes, I'm at a concert and all my friends are here and they're partying, but I'm here to work and I have to focus," says Amanda Rich, hoisting a mike as she slogs through the muddied grounds of Pompano Beach Amphitheatre, where the Warped Tour recently brought 11,000 kids and dozens of punk/pop/ metal bands together.

Amanda, 19, is definitely focused.

She's taping for future episodes of Swept Away TV, a cable TV music-and-interview show showcasing up-and-coming bands along with CD and movie reviews.

Count Amanda, of Boca Raton, among the teenagers who write, tape and edit the 30-minute show that's produced through Boca Raton Educational Television and airs on public access cable. In September, it expands to WLRN's community access channel, Ch. 36 on most Miami-Dade County cable systems.

Ever since The Blair Witch Project made big news with its small budget and youthful creators, you see more and more young talent using technology to make their own entertainment: CDs, books, TV shows and movies. The Swept Away cast and crew are part of that do- it-yourself generation.

"These kids are very creative," says John Stubbs, senior TV director for WLRN. "The show keeps your attention."


The show typically opens with four or so hosts, lounging on a sofa, bantering about what's fresh in the music world. Then they cut to interviews, concert snippets and more banter.

Sometimes these interviews catch a rising star,among them John Mayer. A year or so before he won a Grammy, he and Amanda had a freewheeling session where he joked about his dating behavior.

At the moment, Amanda is into a spirited interview with two members of Less Than Jake, a popular Gainesville band. Jeff Hendler, 17, of Boca Raton, stands in the background, taping. Nicole Shevloff, 16, of Deerfield Beach, is elsewhere interviewing other bands.

A professional-looking press badge hangs from Amanda's skirt as she sits in a tiny room serving as the "press pit." During the interview, she mentions seeing Less Than Jake perform with another group.

That wasn't us, they say.

"Whoops, blooper," she says, laughing at her own mistake, then quickly moving on. In interviewing technique, she's miles ahead of one teen reporter who talks more than listens. Another teenage trio is so star-struck they're virtually speechless.

"Next time, maybe you should write down a few questions," a band member suggests kindly.

Amanda is clearly at ease, joking with band members about everything from hair length to portable potties at rock concerts.

Before day's end, she's chatting with Andrew W.K. on his tour bus and gamely interviews a member of Thrice under a tree when the press pit gets crowded.

"Nothing ever happens the way you think it's going to," she says. "You can get to a concert, and they have no idea who you are. When a bunch of 16- and 17-year-olds tell you, `We're the press,' sometimes they just think we're trying to get in for free. You have to go with the flow and learn to deal with people who don't believe you."

Amanda, Jeff and Nicole go with the flow quite nicely. They keep in contact by cellphones as they march through the mud, mayhem and music, looking poised and professional considering the scorching heat.

When it's over, the trio has material for at least one show: six band interviews and concert snippets.

"What they do is very free-flowing," says Randy Grinter, owner of Club Ovation in Boynton Beach, where the kids tape part of their shows. "It's good because you don't have a bunch of adults standing around saying, `Oh, you can't do that.' You have kids talking to kids."


By all accounts, the learning curve was steep. Someone -- no names here -- once forgot to press "record" during an interview. Ditto, the audio button during a concert.

But with 66 shows behind them since Swept Away's 2000 debut, they've learned.

They know now to shoot crowd shots for extra footage to cover filming gaffes. They know to check artists' and CD names so they don't stumble trying to pronounce them on camera.

"And we try to stay away from mosh pits," Jeff says knowingly. Getting hit with flying bodies ruins camera shots and threatens equipment.

Jeff remembers trying to manage a 15-pound hand-held camera in one hand and a mike in the other during one Sunfest concert in West Palm Beach. He finally stuffed the mike between his legs to get a better grip on the camera.

But the mike slipped.


On the show, you hear that sound marring the music.

"It's embarrassing when you mess up in front of a band because it looks unprofessional," Jeff says. "But we learn from it."

In the beginning, the kids reached out to record companies, asking for their help in connecting with bands. Now companies bombard them with CDs they want to promote. And two years ago, the show was a finalist for a Billboard Music Video Award for "best pop local/regional show."

"They're much more in tune with the street," says Sandy Bidinger, with Universal Music in its Sunrise office. "They were onto John Mayer before he was big."

The show, which started with a half-dozen kids, now involves about 70. They tape everywhere in South Florida, from small clubs to major venues, including the Office Depot Center.

Students can get community service credits, required at many South Florida schools, for their volunteer efforts. But you can't put a price on the chance to rub shoulders with teen dreams, including Avril Lavigne and Something Corporate.

"I'm here for the music," says Nicole, armed with recording gear. "And where else would I have the opportunity to meet the bands?"

It all started with Amanda and sister Jaime, now a law student, who performed as a singing group called Swept Away. Then, in 1999, Boca Raton Educational TV offered them a chance to host a teen show.

They recruited volunteers from Miami to Martin County to help with everything from hosting the show to passing out promotional material.

The behind-the-scenes organizer is Amanda and Jaime's mother, Nancy Rich, who runs a teen talent management company and formed Swept Away Media Corp. as a nonprofit organization, funded by private donations.

Much of the planning and some editing takes place using $12,000 worth of equipment, stored in the Riches' Boca Raton home.

Rich admits to a learning curve, too, especially when the kids taped at the Buzz Bake Sale, a wild music extravaganza featuring multiple bands and lively mosh pits.

"I thought it had to do with cakes and cookies," she says.

On a more serious note, no one jokes about the real-life experience these teens get putting the show together. They're all interested in working in entertainment -- directing and producing -- and hope this will give them a leg up.

No matter what, Amanda already has learned how to turn one's pleasure into a career.

"Put me at a music concert," she says. "I always have a good time."

Liz Doup can be reached at ldoup@sun-sentinel.com or 954-356- 4722.


Swept Away TV airs on cable channels 54 and 62 in Boca Raton and channel 19 west of the city. The show airs at 8 p.m. Monday and 10:30 a.m. Saturday. Starting in September it will also air on WLRN's community access channel, Ch. 36 on most Miami-Dade County cable systems. It also will be on Boca Raton Educational Television's Web site, bretonline.tv, in streaming video.


Auditions for teenagers ages 13 to 17 interested in volunteering for Swept Away TV will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 30 at Club Ovation, 3637 S. Federal Highway, Boynton Beach. The crew does everything from on-air commentary to taping, editing and passing out promotional material. For more information, e-mail showhosts@ sweptawayonline.com or check the Web site, sweptawaytv.com.

- Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel Newspaper


In 2001, the Billboard Music Video Awards named Swept Away TV as a finalist in the category of “Best Pop Local/Regional Show.” In 2002 and 2003 members of the cast and crew received the Student Service Challenge Awards from President Bush. Host Zach Rich is also the winner of a Tiger Woods/Target Stores Foundation grant for his work on Swept Away TV. In April 2004, Swept Away TV won a national AEGIS AWARD for excellence in show production. Co-Producer and Creator Amanda Rich won a scholarship from the Central Florida Media Project for her role in the creation of Swept Away TV.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Swept Away TV is a dynamic 30-minute weekly television show developed by teens to help them gain real-life experiences in the media field. Each task involved in the production of the show, from the writing and directing to the filming and editing is performed exclusively by teens. Presented in a magazine format, Swept Away TV focuses mainly on pop culture and interviewing musical and movie personalities.

Swept Away TV just completed a pilot episode for a national television network in January. The pilot consisted of interviews and music video/live performance footage.
Season 5 episodes are often filmed at family/teen travel destinations, such as episode 6 filmed at
Club Med Sandpiper. 133 episodes have been filmed.

The show also includes live performance footage, video gaming segments, as well as music, movie reviews, fashion and travel segments. Based in Boca Raton, FL, Swept Away TV is broadcast over Adelphia Cable (BRET-TV) Channel 98 and in Miami on WLRN (PBS Affiliate)Channel 36. The total number of households is 1.35 million households 9 times per week. The coverage area is from Miami to North of Boca Raton Florida.


In 1999, BRET-TV gave sisters Jaime and Amanda Rich the opportunity to host a teen show on the channel after reading an article about their singing group, Swept Away, and the sisters’ musical ambitions. Tasked not only with starring in the show, but also writing, producing and editing it themselves, the sisters quickly recruited other local teens to pitch in and volunteer their time. Since then, the Rich sisters have moved on to serve as Executive Directors of Swept Away TV. Now in its fourth season, Swept Away TV is hosted by a small group of teens and has a volunteer staff of over 70 teens from across Florida. Teens travel from as far as Jacksonville and Key West, over 4 hours in either direction to work on the show each month.