Ch. 20 wants to hook-up with indie producers

WYCC-Ch. 20 is seeking relationships with independent producers, in which WYCC can serve as the presenting station for co-productions to air on Ch. 20 and to offer the program to PBS stations nationally.

“We’re looking for shows of local and national interest that fit our mission of educationally diverse programming,” says station manager Paul Buckner.

“WTTW has obviously been a major player for PBS nationally. We’re jumping into that arena.”

The public TV station of the City Colleges of Chicago operates out of the Southwest Side Kennedy-King College and programs Ch. 20.

As signs of the initiative to become a more significant programmer, Buckner cites his own recent hiring, and the recent construction of a $250 million state-of-the-art HD studio — now available for rentals — to replace its former modest facility at Daley College.

In terms of programming, “We sit down with producers, draw up a co-production agreement, and create a plan of action,” Buckner says. The station matches dollar-for-dollar any money its production partners raise from ITVS.”

WYCC has had this arrangement available for years but hasn’t utilized it much since the 1999 to 2002 bilingual parenting series, “Nuestros Ni?os/Small Talk.”

The station is also seeking clients for its production services, which include studio rental, a field unit with five Sony HDC1500L cameras, and optional tech crew. “Production services is a large part of what we do,” Buckner says.

“We offer very competitive rates. I’ve been in the Chicago market for 12 years and I don’t think there’s any facility that can offer what we offer at our prices.”