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The Warsaw Voice » Business » September 30, 2013
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Media in brief
September 30, 2013   
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Digital TV for Cost-Conscious
Polish television viewers watching digital terrestrial television for free tend to spend more time in front of their TV sets than pay-TV customers, according to a survey by Nielsen Audience Measurement. Those viewers who only have access to digital terrestrial television watch it 4 hours and 22 minutes daily on average, while subscribers of pay satellite services and cable networks spend 4 hours and 8 minutes in front of their TV sets, the survey found.

As a result of a recent digitization project, Polish television viewers have 19 digital terrestrial channels to choose from.

“Viewers who only recently got access to a much wider range of programs tend to spend more time watching TV,” says Nielsen Audience Measurement’s Michał Szczepankiewicz.

The survey shows that 28 percent of Poland’s households watch only free digital terrestrial television. These are mainly single and poorly paid people. Half of them declare their monthly income is under zl.1,800 and many were previously “digitally excluded,” Nielsen Audience Measurement says.

The range of digital terrestrial television channels will expand in April next year, in the last such expansion project, to include conservative Catholic channel TV Trwam, children’s channel TVP ABC, film channel Stopklatka TV, and education channel Fokus TV.

TV for Culture Vultures
The Polish public television broadcaster’s TVP Kultura channel, which focuses on culture and the arts, plans to offer viewers a feast of film, theater and music this fall.

Saturday evenings on TVP Kultura will be filled with jazz concerts by top musicians and singers recorded in various concert halls across the world.

For opera lovers, the channel has a special series focusing on Giuseppe Verdi to mark the 200th anniversary of the Italian composer’s birth. Once a month, on a Wednesday evening, the channel will screen the best known works by Verdi.

TVP Kultura will also turn the spotlight on the great Polish composers Krzysztof Penderecki and Henryk Mikołaj Górecki, both of whom are turning 80 this year. To mark the occasion, the channel will air a selection of archival programs as well as premieres of documentaries about the two composers.

TVP Kultura’s fall schedule is also full of films. These will include short films by young Polish directors—both student films from leading Polish film schools and the best indie films that have won top prizes at independent film festivals.

At the same time, the channel continues to offer popular cultural news programs such as Tygodnik Kulturalny (Cultural Weekly), which has been on the air since the channel was launched in 2005. In it, host Michał Chaciński, aided by guests, discusses the most interesting cultural events of the week. Another flagship TVP Kultura program is the Hala odlotów (Departures Lounge) talk show, which was launched in September 2012 with the aim of promoting culture. It aims to show that culture is not something abstract, but part and parcel of everyday life. Discussion topics also include moral and social issues.

As part of its focus on theater, TVP Kultura will air some well-known made-for-television theater plays featuring top Polish actors—including Janusz Gajos in Opowie¶ci Hollywoodu (Tales of Hollywood), Jan Peszek in Ferdydurke, and Piotr Fronczewski in Wielka magia (Big Magic). November will mark 60 years since the first made-for-television theater play was aired on Polish television.

TVP Kultura will also air a new series of programs produced in cooperation with Russia’s Rossiya K culture channel, with broadcasts of Russian shows on Polish television and Polish productions on Russian television.

Planes, Brains and Automobiles
A number of new programs have appeared on commercial station TVN Turbo, which chiefly targets a male audience. One of these is Top Wings, about people with a passion for flying, the secrets of flying machines and extraordinary and unusual aerial events. The program is hosted by professional pilots Wojciech Dobrzaniecki and Piotr Fiedler.

Another new program is Siła armii (Army Power), hosted by Major Arkadiusz Kups, who aims to show how the armed forces are changing. The message is that it is no longer enough to be tough and fit in order to be a soldier these days: those with a talent for information technology are increasingly carving out a career for themselves in the army.

Jazda (nie) polska is a new program from Kuba Bielak, who sets out to check if drivers have the same habits and shortcomings everywhere. How do Greek drivers behave on the road? What do you have to watch out for when driving in Scandinavia? Are the police in Finland forgiving?

Another new feature on TVN Turbo is 44 kultowe samochody (44 Cult Cars)—about legendary vehicles including a Cadillac once used by former Polish communist leader Edward Gierek, a Citroën that once belonged to France’s Charles de Gaulle, the good old Fiat 126p, dubbed the “Maluch” (Toddler), and the infamous awe-inspiring Black Volga, which supposedly cruised the streets of communist-era Poland to abduct people, especially children.

Yet another new program on TVN Turbo is Nowy gadżet (New Gadget), in which host Kuba Klawiter, a gadget freak, tests out various commercially available products, equipment and applications.

The Voice of Poland Returns
Public broadcaster TVP’s TVP2 channel launched the third season of its music talent show The Voice of Poland. Najlepszy głos (The Voice of Poland: The Best Voice) in September.

As in the previous two seasons, talented rookie singers, mentored by professional coaches and experts, are given a chance of making a quantum leap in their careers. The coaches for season three are popular Polish singers Edyta Górniak and Maria Sadowska, in addition to Marek Piekarczyk from the band TSA, and Tomson and Baron, musicians of Afromental fame. The hosts of the program are Tomasz Kammel, Marika and Maciej Musiał.

The Voice is an internationally successful format broadcast in more than 50 countries. The top prize is a recording contract with the Universal Music Polska label.
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