‘Interludes’ Makes Sweet Music for TV One

TV One is striking the right chords with multiplatform music series Interludes.

The series, in which top R&B artists perform in a small, intimate venue, has benefited from a multiplatform approach including promotion on TV One parent company Radio One’s urban stations around the country, video clip offerings from the series on female-targeted website HelloBeautiful.com and on-demand tie-ins with Comcast’s Xfinity service.

Smokey Fontaine, chief content officer for Interactive One, the digital arm of Radio One, said the series has become popular because of its ability to attract marquee R&B performers to perform in a more intimate venue.

Interludes has already featured such stars as Alicia Keys, John Legend, Toni Braxton and Babyface, Jennifer Hudson and, more recently, up and coming artist Kem, whose show premieres Sept. 27.

Interludes is currently averaging nearly 200,000 viewers, more than TV One’s 148,000 average primetime audience for the second quarter.

“Black music has really become pop music and we have so much talent in the black music space,” Fontaine said. “Because of that, these stars become so massive and in demand for big stadium shows that we don’t get a chance to see their talent up close and personal. I wanted to create an experience where I could see someone really gifted and talented in a small venue.”

Interludes also gives TV One a vehicle with which to promote other music-themed shows like Unsung, D’Angela Proctor, senior vice president of programming and production, said.

Comcast is set to run the Kem Interludes show for 30 days after its TV One airing as part of its celebrateblacktv.com site, network officials said.

Fontaine said TV One wants potentially wants to expand the franchise to include classic R&B acts and gospel music.

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.