New shopping channel is shopping for editors

June 16, 1994|By New York Times News Service

The rejection letters being sent out by Gail Katz Brady, the talent coordinator for Q2, cheerfully declared, "We've interviewed and tested nearly 400 people over a relatively short period of time and had a great time in the process."

Q2 is the QVC Network's new shopping channel, aimed at customers who still sniff at QVC. It will begin broadcasting a full weekend schedule in September.

Many of those people are now fashion or beauty editors, or free-lance stylists or writers, and at least 28 of them have taken classes from Dorothy Sarnoff, the chairwoman of Speech Dynamics, on how to sell, sell, sell.

While the rejection letters call Q2's mission, "venturing down the path of discovery," editors' auditions have involved the less lofty task of reading from a TelePrompTer and describing products as mundane as a hairbrush.

Candice M. Carpenter, the president of Q2, said nine editors will be hired to serve as experts for style, home, entertainment, family, travel, health and beauty, sports and fitness, and the West Coast. Each one-hour segment has an editor and a personal shopper.

While the editors explain the products, the personal shoppers extol them.

So far, Tina Gaudoin, a former editor for Harper's Bazaar and Mirabella, will be the health and beauty editor.

Clinton Kelly, a former writer for Sportstyle magazine, a Fairchild publication, will be the personal shopper for sports and fitness.

Ed Cortese, the former fashion marketing manager of GQ magazine, will be the personal shopper for fashion.

Ms. Carpenter and Q2 have discovered that editors aren't always the most camera-ready people.

"That's why we've gone through 400 people," she sighed.

"This has been an expensive search. But we're designing this program for people who aren't that interested in home shopping today. So it's organized around lifestyle categories.

"We have a show just on great accessories, like the perfect pair of sunglasses. We'll search the world and have 10 pairs of sunglasses, with the designers on the show."

She said it wasn't necessarily the editors' credibility that made them attractive.

"We're interested in people being able to tune in and hear a point of view that comes form experience," she said.

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