On the last installment of ‘Oprah’s Search for the Next TV Star, Your OWN show,’ which is airing now on the OWN Network, we meet the last 2 standing unknown (for now) contestants, one of which is about to have their wildest dreams come true and get to host their very own show on Oprah’s network! This past week, the boss herself, Oprah interviews the surprised final three, who thought they were just being interviewed by reporters at two huge media outlets ‘TV Guide’ & ‘Entertainment Tonight.’ The press junket took place at the Sheraton Universal in Universal City , CA. This would have been challenging enough. However, when the three were done being interviewed, they were told they had one more to do and in walks Oprah. While none of the three have host experience, we see why they have made it this far & we also see why Oprah would want to handpick the person who will best represent the O network, OWN. The following are excerpts of the Oprah and would be contestant interviews & you can see why each one in their own right has a story to share and can be an inspiration to others.
Age 31. Lives in Alhambra, California. Kristina escaped war-torn Croatia at age 15. She explains that when times were tough, while on food stanps she would host weekly gatherings and just cook for people who needed/wanted to eat, even buying food sometimes on food stamps. She is hoping to get her own cooking show on the OWN network. She claims she is very passionate about cooking, which helped her get through the lean times.
Oprah: What do you think is your calling? Kristina: I think my calling is to help people see they have something to bring & it’s huge.
Oprah: What do you know for sure about what this experience has brought to your life? Kristina: I have something that can’t be shut down & I need to use my voice. I know that no matter what I’ve heard, that voice is worthy to be heard. If I stay true to myself, I can inspire other people for their voice to be heard.
Age 46. Lives in Goodyear, Arizona. Terey has a comedic background & is a comedic motivational speaker. Her husband past away two years ago & she’s lost 165 lbs.
Oprah: Tell me what you have to say that the world needs to hear? Terey: Life is difficult but there’s hope. You can make a difference. Things can change. Wahtever corner of the workd you occupy, you can leave it a better place when you’re done.
Oprah: What do you think you’re purpose/true calling is? Terey: I have a big voice. I would like to use this microphone to holler out to other people.
Age 25. Lives in Austin, Texas. Zach wants to host an insprirational Travel show. His idea for a show is to travel the world and highlight the trials that ensue to show how anyone confined to a wheelchair, like himself, can overcome any obstacle.
Oprah: What made you want to take this on? Zach: I thought it could help a lot of people. This is a way for me to give a voice to a population that hasn’t had one.
Oprah: What do you think the biggest misconception is about people with disabilities? Zach: That they are helpless & that their personalities are defined by their disabilities. I am so many things before I am a person in a wheelchair. Get to know the person. The wheelchair is incidental.
After their interview, Zach took advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity & turned the tables on Oprah & asked some very original questions, impressing Oprah as well as the week’s guest mentor, Gayle King.
Zach: what has been the moment where you felt the most pressure to be Oprah? Oprah: The most pressure to be Oprah is in creating this network. Beautiful question.The world expects this nextwork to be immediately what the Oprah show has been & it’s taken me 25 years to create.
Zach: If you weren’t Oprah Winfrey the brand, what would be the first thing you’d like people to know about you? Oprah: Also, an excellent question. At my heart, I am a teacher & that’s really the purpose of this network. To use it as a tool for teaching & inspiring & giving people back to themselves, so people can see the best of themselves.
In the end, the two which were chosen to move onto the finale were Kristina & Zach. Their ideas for their own show which they want to host were a bit more defined & in the make it or break it interview challenge with Gayle King, these two had formed better interview questions and had a more natural & conversational interaction with their guest.
Oprah closed out her segment stating ‘Finding talent is an extraordinary task. In order for a talk show or any show to be successful, it has to rely on the authenticity of the person hosting it & the IT Factor can’t be defined but you know it when you see it.’
The finale airs Friday on the OWN Network, where the person with that IT factor will be revealed. What I know for sure is that I initially was intrigued by the idea of this show because well, I’m a huge Oprah fan & I am also an aspiring broadcast journalist, so I wanted to see what skills it took to impress Oprah & get to host one’s own show. What I got out of this show was so much more. It wasn’t a cutthroat competition, like so many other reality TV shows out there. The ones that made it to the top of this show, truly are inspirational. The fact that they made it this far speaks volumes. They prove to us all that we all have the ability, no matter what our background, to follow our heart & see our dreams come true & you can just be yourself to get ahead.
To see past episodes go to:http://www.oprah.com/own-your-own-show/your-own-show.html
Host your OWN show, Oprahs Search for the next TV Star is hosted by Nancy O’Dell & Carson Kressley & airs Fridays. The next star of the OWN network who gets to host their own show will be revealed this Friday February 25, 2011 at 9:00 -10:00 pm PT.
To find the OWN network on your TV go to: www.oprah.com/own.