Hall Of Fame: Baljit Sidhu

This months Hall of Fame was conducted with BBC Asian Network Producer, Baljit Sidhu who currently produces the primetime Sonia Deol Show. Baljit left Leeds University with a degree in English Literature and History of Art in 2001 unclear of which career path to take. However, the events of September 11th made her determined to work in the media and in 2002 started in at BBC Asian Network.

What made you become a radio producer? I wanted to be at the forefront of news. However, that has slowly changed and now I just want to entertain our listeners. This is really important as you can convey numerous important messages through entertainment.

What kind of radio programmes have you produced? I’ve had the opportunity to make 30 minute radio documentaries for the Asian Network and have worked on programmes that ranged from the British-Asian guitar scene to secret mixed-race relationships. I also worked for 6 months on Radio 4, producing the iconic ‘Farming Today’, recording out in the Dordogne for ‘Open Country’ and working with Blur bassist Alex James for an edition of ‘On Your Farm’. I am currently one of three producers working on the ‘Sonia Deol Show’ and I never know what the day will bring – whether it’s booking an interview with a Bollywood director or finding a dream expert!

You have worked on a variety of shows, what is thesecret to your success?  I have worked in broadcast journalism/producer since 2002. Since then I have worked on all sorts of programming from news shows to music shows. I think the trick is to be interested in anything and everything whether it be the latest political scandals to the latest Bollywood movie release.

What’s your favourite restaurant? Carluccio’s.. I love Italian food.

What challenges did you face as a female in your career and how did you overcome them? I feel quite lucky in that I work for BBC Asian Network. It staff is Asian and 90% female, so I don’t have to overcome some of the stereotypical female challenges that others may in this profession. I can only talk from my experience and that is that I have had a positive route into my career and its development.

Did you watch the Royal Wedding? Yup – and loved every moment of it. It was a fabulous occasion.

Do you ask for autographs when you meet stars and whose autograph would you most like to have? I don’t tend to ask for autographs – I’ve never seen the point of collecting  signatures.

What mantra do you live by? Live and let live.

Would you call yourself religious, spiritual or neither? Spiritual – I believe something is out there but I don’t want anyone dictating to me what they think it is.

Did you have a heartthrob pin-up as a teenager? Man Utd player Ryan Giggs

Is there anywhere you would like to travel to that you haven’t been before? China. i am fascinated by China and would love to travel the country but I really need to get over my fear of long-haul travel first.

What was the last book you read? The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

Who would be present at your fantasy dinner party? (5 guests plus you) Audrey Hepburn, Plato, Larry David, Lembher Hussainpuri, George Clooney

What has been your greatest achievement? My marriage

Quote of the day…Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.

2 Comments to “Hall Of Fame: Baljit Sidhu”

  1. Thank you, what a great interview. Will have to search for the book.

  2. Fantastic interview and what a great job to have! Getting to work on Radio 4 .. eek !

    I would also love to go to China – long haul not a problem – but i’m scared of snakes. Especially the kind that they serve alive in a restaurant.

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