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Kathryn's Rwanda doc airing Monday
20 Apr 2014 14:02
Kathryn Thomas reveals that her recent visit to Rwanda, for a Radio 1 Documentary, was emotional and a great learning curve.
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You may have seen the photo of Kathryn Thomas in Rwanda on the front cover of the Sunday Independent’s Life magazine recently, which was taken when she was in Africa to make a documentary for RTÉ Radio 1.
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The Voice of Ireland presenter told RTÉ TEN how it came about: "I had been working with Elizabeth Laragy and we had done a documentary called Music Passport, looking at music within the Travelling community. "We really enjoyed working together, it was my first radio doc that I’d done. I’ve been sitting in the John Murray chair when it was vacant, whenever I was asked, or needed.
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"I still feel like I’m getting my radio legs. They’re nowhere near as well-walked or as well-traveled as my television legs but I still feel that I’ve a lot to learn. Live radio is one thing but working on a documentary it’s a very different process.
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"You work very closely with the producer, Elizabeth, who is absolutely brilliant and we had a great time and established a good and strong working relationship. "What’s great about it is you’re out and about meeting people and for me that’s what my passion is, its human interest, its listening to people’s stories. That’s what I’m really enjoying doing, I think that’s what I’m beginning to get good at."
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She added: "Elizabeth knew the 20th anniversary of the genocide was coming up and she knew that every media outlet from around the world would be doing something to commemorate it so we got chatting."
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Elizabeth and Kathryn decided to focus on the music of Rwanda to tell their story: "That’s what the whole documentary is about, music historically in Rwanda. I’ve travelled all over Africa, in the ten years of No Frontiers, Rwanda was one place I’d never been, but I understand African music and I understand how it is almost like the Irish, how its so important to us.
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"It’s looking at the power of music, how they used it negatively for the genocide and how today they’re still using it to rebuild and to heal the country after such a horrible time."
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Music Passport: A Journey through Genocide is on Easter Monday at 2pm on RTÉ Radio 1, listen live and via the RTÉ Radio Player or the Radio 1 App on your mobile.
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