Jeopardy! auditions held in the Lowcountry

On weekend nights at 7:30, many of you make sure your TV is tuned in to News 2 to watch Jeopardy!

On Wednesday, the Jeopardy! crew was in Charleston, holding auditions for next season.

“I’m just excited to be here. Nervous a little bit. Wondering if I studied the right thing. I mean I studied a little bit. Just wondering if I studied enough. Or if I already know the things I need to know. Or if they’re going to ask me geography and math that I don’t know,” says Terri Barnes of Summerville. She is one of the Jeopardy! faithfuls from across the area that were invited to Charleston to audition for the show.

“I’m a pretty avid watcher. I’ve got a DVR as full as I can make it with Jeopardy! shows trying to catch up on it,” says Scott Antonio

The first step each one of these people went through is completing the online Jeopardy! test. If you score high enough on the test, you can then be selected to come to an in-person audition which is the second step. Phase two starts with a 50 second timed test.

“After we grade the test, we have them stand up three at a time, just like on the show and play the game. We have the actual buzzers with us. We have a computer system to kind of replicates the game board. So it’s very much like seeing them on the show when we do these auditions,” explains Maggie Speak, one of the producers for Jeopardy!

Last year, 70,000 adults took the online test. About 3,000 are invited to these in-person auditions. And of those, only 400 become contestants each season.

“There’s gotta be something compelling about how they play the game. You know some people get very intense. And play the game very hard and fast. And some of the people just have a great time playing and are very loose about it. So what you’re looking for is someone who knows how to play the game and has some fun playing the game or brings something else interesting to the table that’s gonna make you wanna watch them on the show,” says Speak.

While they all want a chance to be on the show…

“If I get chosen to be on the show, I’ll be pretty happy. I haven’t been to Los Angeles ever, so a new experience,” says Antonio.

They are soaking up the process.

“I’m just curious about the whole process. Just to see what it’s like behind the scenes. I already met one of the Clue Crew so that was kind of exciting. I was a little star struck. He took my picture,” says Barnes of meeting Jimmy McGuire.

If you would like to be a contestant on Jeopardy!, watch the website for the next batch of dates for the online test.



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