Published on Saturday, 31 March 2012 10:30
WGN-AM, which has been going largely with prerecorded programming on its weekend overnights lately, went live and local early this morning and will be doing so again early tomorrow morning. The station is doing an on-air test with a new host, MJ Witt.
MJ Witt was on WGN-AM's airwaves last month as the first-ever co-host for Bill Leff on his weekday overnight show. That one-night co-hosting job was her first real time on radio. It went so well and she was such a natural on the radio that WGN-AM offered her this weekend wee hours test run. She was on this morning from 2:00am-5:00am and will be on again tomorrow morning from 2:00am-5:00am.
Very much a fan of new media, she even set up a Facebook fanpage, entitled MJ on WGN
for this weekend's shows (and potentially any future ones).
MJ Witt has never done radio before, but has spent over 20 years of her life working in television. She was living in Los Angeles for many years, but is a native Chicagoan, who is now back here full-time. Her very first job was working in the mailroom at WLS-TV. From there, she worked behind the scenes on local newscasts and then worked with WTTW-TV as a producer for Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert's famed movie review program. From there, Witt was off to Los Angeles to live & work. She produced many newsmagazine TV shows (20/20, Extra, Inside Edition, Entertainment Tonight, more) and some programs for the USA Network. Since 2003, MJ Witt has owned & operated Wittworld
, a media consulting firm. She also runs Chewy Center
, a media content provider.
For right now, it appears this is just a weekend experiment. (Many radio stations do experiments late nights on weekends, knowing very few will be listening, in case the experiment goes poorly.) Will it lead to something more than just a two-night experiment? Time will tell. If it goes the way most WGN-AM experiments go, though, then it does not seem likely that MJ Witt will be anything more than an occasional fill-in host for the radio station. At least fans of the the station can be happy that WGN Radio does like to sometimes experiment with new & fresh voices on weekends to keep the station's programming moving forward and not get stale, without disrupting its core programming and fanbase.