Report – CMC Creative Keynote: Richard McCourt and Dominic Wood
The session began with a presentation by changemaker Nikki Christou:
The full session is available here as a video and as a podcast:
The connoisseurs of Creamy Muck Muck, Dick and Dom had entered the Crucible to cause mess, mayhem and talk about their 20+ year career in children’s television.
- Their success wouldn’t exist without enthusiastic, hard-working teams around them
- Give children a greater media platform to present themselves
- Invest in silly!
There was no better way to kick off the keynote than with some audience participation from Dick and Dom, which loosened up the crowd. Armed with loaded water bottles, they left the audience laughing and some of them soaking wet.
They opened up about being influenced by children’s TV greats like Phillip Schofield and Chris Evans in his Big Breakfast era. They weren’t afraid to work from the bottom up as they were doing humble running jobs and mailroom work at the BBC before they were even given the smallest of opportunities on screen. They realised early on that through the power of live TV, they could take small risks to make themselves stand out. They didn’t always pay off but through taking these chances and building their name amongst producers, a fledgling CBBC channel gifted them their own Saturday morning show, designed to make CBBC channel-defining and draw in more viewers during its rough period.
‘Dick and Dom in Da Bungalow’ was the injection that children’s television needed and was a smash hit, quickly becoming a pop culture hit in a few short years. Richard and Dominic put the success of the show down to every creative member of the show’s team. From producer to runner, every individual had an impact on the proceedings and made it memorable.
They gave advice to young people trying to break in to the industry (and also to the industry), saying that young team members need to be listened to, and despite their lack of experience they have the passion and positivity that can produce original ideas with no fear or doubt in their mind. To the veterans of children’s TV, they stated that little to no hierarchy means the sky is limit for a project’s potential.
But of course, it wouldn’t be a Dick and Dom show without some mild public humiliation to end on – as they got conference director Greg Childs to come on stage and get involved in magic tricks and vocal tomfoolery.
A superb keynote that showed that even the hardest-working, driven individuals can embrace their silly side.