BBC assistant gets Radio 1 show in shake-up

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The Independent Online

A production worker at BBC Radio 1 has been given her own show as part of an overhaul of the station's prestigious specialist evening schedule.

A production worker at BBC Radio 1 has been given her own show as part of an overhaul of the station's prestigious specialist evening schedule.

Annie "Annie Mac" MacManus will report on the latest developments in dance clubs on Thursday nights. MacManus, 25, who only joined Radio 1 last year and is unknown to the public, is now a broadcast assistant for the New Zealand-born presenter Zane Lowe, who is to be the star of the evening schedule with four shows a week.

Her promotion came after she was asked to do a pilot show. Radio 1 bosses were so impressed that they offered her the chance to showcase new dance music in her own show.

The losers in the shake-up, plans for which were revealed in The Independent on Tuesday, are the dance music DJs Dave Pearce and Seb Fontaine. Pearce will lose his drive-time show and have to content himself with his current Sunday night programme. Fontaine, who has a huge following among clubbers, is to be dropped altogether.

Other significant changes include the recognition of the rise in modern British Asian music, with the promotion of the Bobby and Nihal show to a 9pm slot on Wednesdays, from its current 3am shift. Wednesday evenings will be dedicated to "urban" music, with rock dominating the schedule on Tuesdays and clubbing on Thursdays.

The changes are the latest round of a complete overhaul of the station by Radio 1's controller, Andy Parfitt, who said yesterday: "Radio 1's remit is to break the best new music to the widest possible young audience."

The shake-up was "designed to make our specialist schedule the most exciting listen possible, reflecting everything that is new and important musically around the world today". He said: "Radio 1's remit is to break the best new music to the widest possible young audience.

Lowe has been given the job of being the "bridge" between the more mainstream daytime schedule and the station's specialist output. He said: "It has always been my goal to do more than just preach to the converted. By giving me a new time-slot that gets me more into the daytime I am going to become a music missionary for all those listeners who may not know how much exciting new music they are missing out on."

The changes, which come into effect from July, will mean rap DJ Westwood will lose an hour a week and Trevor Nelson's R&B Saturday show will be extended by an hour. Other changes include rock, urban and dance nights and a one-hour show for new and unusual music, comedy and art every weekday.

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