The final round – the talk about integration & migration – was prepared by twenty pupils themselves. For most of them it was the first time outside their educational career to engage in the political discussion and to get in contact with actual politicians. As part of the preparation the pupils took classes and seminars on PR-work and rhetoric. They even parted for Strasbourg to visit the parliament of the European Union and got instructed on its functions by the parliament’s vice-president, Mr. Wieland. And finally there was a meeting with the Starkmacher’s co-workers for an enhanced seminar on filmmaking, featuring a professional filmmaking crew from Hamburg. So the Starkmacher provided support and counsel on how to run a talk show and how to capture it on video. And of course there was a lot of practicing and practicing and practicing.
“Talk in the Tower” took place at the 4th October on the observation deck of the TV-broadcasting tower in Mannheim. There were six guests from politics and economy who were about to be pestered with questions. There was hardly one from the responsible crew that didn’t get at least a little nervous. Would everything work out? Would it become the interesting discussion everyone had hoped for? Would the cameras run properly for a solid documentary? But as the talk got going the tension dropped and everyone rose in their role. The filming crew, the technical assistant, the anchorman, everybody had apparently underestimated their own capabilities in the first place, but now flew on their own cloud of success.
Achorman Berfin (f. 17 years): “It is fun to pose questions the politicians might not know an answer to. We (the youth) are interested in all kinds of things, especially politics because we are not always included in the political discussion and here we have the possibility to say: Stop it right there! Something is going wrong! We are here, too!”. Janina is also thrilled: “It is just so exciting being the head of a show, it becomes your show, your command and it is up to you, what to say or to ask. It is so much fun!”.
Before they can see themselves on ‘their’ recorded talk show, they will have to wait until the final meeting will be upheld.