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Strombo and Mark Kelley on Why the Geminis Really go to Their Teams


As far as hosting gigs go, it's pretty sweet to have a show with your name on it. Especially when that show's a success, like George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight and Connect With Mark Kelley were at last night's Gemini Awards Industry Gala, when they took home Best Talk Series and Best Host or Interviewer in a News Information Program or Series respectively.

But after accepting the Best Talk Series prize with co-executive producer, Tania Natscheff, George reminded me that "In our business, this is the stuff that's nice to bring back to the team. Unfortunately, when your name is in the title, you tend to get the credit and anyone who does this for a living knows it's not you. It's the collection of people. So, I'm very lucky, I get to win with my friends."

Tania, who joined the George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight team last fall as executive producer, has already shared a Gemini with George. "The first Gemini that we ever won," George said, "it was hers. She was the producer of the The New Music. So, this is your second one, right?"

"Yes, this is the second time we've been together on the stage, " said Tania. (My fact check put them there in 2001 when they were at Much Music and The New Music took Best Talk Series).

After winning Best Host in a News Program for Connect, Mark Kelley's excitement was dedicated to his own team and he felt lucky to be "the guy that brings the medal home for them".

"I've never worked so hard putting together a new show," he explained. "We've been on the air two years... and so many people have worked so hard, so many long hours - and I get to be the public face of it. So, when I win this, although it's my name on it, I'm winning it for 25 people and I am so proud of these people. I've never wanted to share this more. I'm just so proud for all of them and feel so lucky to be part of this team."

Humble as they may be, Mark and George can definitely take credit for leading by example. "He's a hard worker," Tania says of George, "he always has been."

As Mark exits the media room with a sigh of exhilaration, ready to share the moment with the rest of Connect - "young people at CBC who have never had a moment like this before" - Tania wishes she had brought her phone.  "I want to email everyone and phone them and say thanks for working so hard on the show because people really do. They're really passionate about the show. It really is a team effort and we can't do it without the team."

More Industry Gala Gemini Awards will be distributed tomorrow evening and more still at the 26th Annual Gemini Awards live broadcast on Wednesday, September 7, 2011 at 8 pm ET/PT, here on CBC, hosted by Russell Peters. We'll be live streaming the celebrity action that night in The Tom Green Room, hosted by Tom Green right here on CBC Live starting at 7pm ET.



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