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Posts Tagged ‘interview’

Irishman John Cosgrove runs Cosgrove Trivia Challenge, a business which is based around the concept of trivia/interaction and entertainment for corporate events, in the USA.   Last year he returned to his Pub Quiz roots, creating a company that has only female hosts, Sassy Lassy Trivia.  I had a chat with him about making a living from quizzes.

John Cosgrove, a native of County Fermanagh, moved to Minneapolis just over 12 years ago.  Within a year he was hosting a monthly quiz in the Irish Pub he worked at.  Since then he has built a business based around hosting quizzes.

So, were you always into quizzing John?

“I wasn’t much into quizzing growing up.  The few experiences I had were fund-raisers for repairs to the local chapel or for the GAA club.  These were rare and the atmosphere was typically stale.  The host was usually one of the local school teachers and that style of classroom atmosphere was not attractive to young fella like myself.  I had a brother who attended a lot of local quizzes and was part of many winning teams as he was the expert on all things sport, which combined with the more intellectual types was a winning team combo.”
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Trivia talk

Trivia

Trivia is a six-part comedy-drama series, which starts on RTÉ One on February 3.  In the build-up to the first episode, I had a chat with writer Damien Owens about the show and his own quiz experiences.

Damien Owens is a writer of many talents.  The author of four published books, he even writes Chick Lit under a cunningly ambiguous pseudonym.  Trivia, which explores the relationships between the four members of a table quiz team, is his first TV show.

So what gave him the idea for the show?

“I had the idea for the lead character, Lawrence, first. He’s basically just an exaggerated version of myself. He’s obsessed with learning trivia.  I wanted him to have a crazy goal and I hit upon the idea that he’d want to win the table quiz in his local pub for 52 weeks in a row – a full year.  No-one else even knows he’s doing it but, to him, it’s the most important thing in the world.”

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For some time now I’ve been trying to come up with an idea for a quiz. A quiz that no-one else has thought of. A quiz that will be entertaining, easy to grasp and challenging at the same time. A quiz that, once it’s initially successful, will not fade in the public’s affections and will run for years and years.

A quiz, basically, that does everything the ‘Just a Minute Quiz’ on Larry Gogan‘s radio show does.

I’ll be turning 33 this month and, as far back as I can remember, there’s never been a time when the JAMQ did not exist.  It is, by accident or design, a perfect nugget of quiz – quizzing distilled, if you will. The 60 second time limit puts pressure on the contestants, prevents cheating and ensures that the round is over before the listener’s attention wanes.

It was quite a thrill this week when, in honour of this blog’s 100th post, Larry Gogan himself spoke to me about the JAMQ.

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