‘Flyover’ from MPR News aims for listeners across the aisle and between coasts

(MGN Online)

Flyover; a weekly, live call-in show designed to discuss big issues and callers’ perspectives starts Sunday, September 10 at 3 pm CST on public radio stations through November 27. The program is a follow-up to the show Indivisible that aired four nights a week during President Trump’s first 100 days.

“There was a lot more to say,” said MPR’s Kerri Miller to the MSR in a phone interview. Miller hosted the Thursday night edition and also hosts MPR’s mid-morning daytime weekday program.

Indivisible proved a hit among listeners, said Miller, who will host Flyover. The show will be broadcasted live from MPR’s St. Paul studios.

“We heard from stations, listeners [and] social media” after the limited-run series ended. Similarly, Flyover will also feature call-ins. “We are doing it the same way we were doing Indivisible,” continued Miller. “We want to be close to the news [of the day].”

Kerri Miller (Photo courtesy of MPR News)


Is Sunday an ideal day for such a show? “We’ve been hearing from program directors in the public radio world that Sunday afternoon programming is very entertainment-centered,” explained Miller. “We are experimenting [with] a time slot right before All Things Considered Weekend. It will [air] on most stations — some stations are not taking the show live. With all of the news happening day-to-day and over the weekend; it doesn’t end at 5 pm Friday.”

Miller also noted that a show coming out of Middle America, as opposed to Washington and New York where Indivisible was primarily based, has the potential to provide a fresh approach to the day’s news.

“It is a big country beyond the Beltway and New York City,” said Miller. “The voices of people [who] live in all these territories, towns and cities beyond the [East] Coast are really important. We are as engaged [in] what’s happening as they are in San Francisco, D.C. and New York.”

Public radio journalists, expert guests, and the show’s listeners via calls and social media comments, will be primarily featured on each show, which will be anchored by Miller.

“Kerri has shown a great ability to bring out the issues and topics that matter most to people, but really, the most important voice on this program is that of the listener,” stated MPR News Executive Director of News and Programming Nancy Cassutt in a MPR press release.

“It’s important for listeners in one part of the country to hear callers from other parts of the country, and have them share their…experiences without the spin and the interpretation that we get on a lot of cable news [programs].

“I am going to have great guests and [I will] be there moderating the conversations,” she Miller. “I’m super-motivated and excited. It’s a busy fall but I’m reinvigorated… What we do as journalists matter more than ever. I feel Flyover can play an important role in having audiences hear one another without the intrusion of interpretation [and analysis].

“I think it is real powerful to have these listeners… speak across their experience and their geography, and tell one another why they think the way they do, how they live, who they are,” continued Miller. “I think that is powerful in knocking back a lot of this dissatisfaction and the confusion that has been created around trust in journalism.”