A huge collaboration between dozens of AP staff from across the region with key input from AP reporter Danica Kirka, UK video journalist Kwiyeon Ha, London staff photographer Alastair Grant, London-based photo editor Anne-Marie Belgrave, UK News and Special Events Editor Susie Blann and Rome Senior Producer Maria Grazia Murru resulted in two weeks of extensive all-format coverage, culminating in the Coronation of King Charles III on May 6.
The event had been a long time coming, and a massive amount of work went into the coverage — from the planning to the explanatory and feature driven journalism in the lead-up and the wall-to-wall coverage on the day and across the coronation weekend. Kirka’s expert knowledge of the story and sources developed from years of work on the royal beat enabled us to offer clients a variety of stories covering the king and queen’s profiles, the Windsor family drama, the clouds over the Commonwealth, the future of the monarchy, the economy and much more. The result has been a story that was told deeply and powerfully across all formats.
Coverage on May 6 threw up several logistical challenges and the team overcame them all to participate in huge video and photo pool operations while also providing exemplary AP unilateral coverage.
Murru led an experienced video lineup of Ha, Athens video journalist Srdjan Nedeljkovic, Paris video journalist Alex Turnbull, Vienna video journalist Philipp Jenne, Lisbon video journalist Helena Alves and Rome video journalist Luigi Navarra. The edits and lives the team produced garnered thousands of hits and AP unilateral edits were among the most used videos over all the coronation coverage, providing a superb, unrestricted compliment to the heavily restricted coverage we accessed from UK broadcasters. As Director of Global Video Sara Gillesby noted we also met our production speed goals and published over 70 edits on Coronation Day, and it all looked flawless.
For photos, more than 2,300 images moved to clients on the day out of a total of almost 7,000 that we received.
Photographers Kirsty Wigglesworth, Peter Dejong, Petr Josek, Frank Augstein, Vadim Ghirda, David Cliff, Alberto Pezzali, Jon Super, Mosa’ab Elshamy, Steve Luciano, Markus Schreiber, Alessandra Tarantino, Kin Cheung, Scott Garfitt, Andreea Alexandru and Emilio Morenatti were in position at almost first light to provide iconic images from the key locations and to satisfy our pool commitments as well as to provide some distinctive enterprise.
Their images needed to be turned around in rapid time, and a team of remote editors made this possible. They were Virginia Mayo, Armando Franca, Pavel Golovkin, Darko Bandic, Aijaz Rahi, Yan Arthur, Dejan Jankovic and Enric Marti.
In addition, the monumental task of editing 57 photographers from our pool partners was taken on by all nine Europe and Africa members of the global photo desk who worked solely on the coronation: Bridget Jones, Lauryn Tomlinson, Anne Marie Belgrave, Beatrice Larco, Fabio Polimeni, Grace Kassab, Eloy Martin, Michael Sohn and Alberto Pellaschiar.
Kirka was present in Westminster Abbey, later producing a poignant first-person account on the view from inside and another story looking at the artifacts key to coronation day, including the chair, the crown, coronation spoon and gold carriage. Meanwhile, London bureau colleagues Jill Lawless, Sylvia Hui and Brian Melley drove our main text offerings, with Top Stories Hub editor Sarah DiLorenzo editing the mainbar through the day and sending key alerts. Our extensive text coverage ranged from running Live updates, a story looking at Prince Harry’s interactions (or lack of) during his few hours in London and other family drama observations, to a story explaining Queen Camilla’s new title, and a fashion-driven story by Sylvia on what everyone wore for the day.
For an extraordinary effort, overcoming difficulties of weather and access, to convey a coronation and a unique day of British pomp and history, Kirka, Ha, Grant, Belgrave, Blann, Murru and the entire team earn Best of the Week — First Winner.