Austin Baynard Is Ready To Mix Things Up With His New Talk Show “The Mix”
This past weekend I had the amazing opportunity to interview Austin Baynard, who is the creative mind behind the new college talk show The Mix. Austin isn’t just an entrepreneur, but he is also a college student who is majoring in mass communication at Norfolk State University. Austin may be a young creator but he isn’t allowing his age to slow him down, in addition to his class load and new show, he is also a part of his schools SGA activity board. Some people may allow such a busy schedule to overwhelm them but not Austin, instead he seems to thrive in the busyness. He has a light of positivity around him and a way of making you feel that anything is possible. By the end of our interview, I wasn’t just a new supporter of Austin but I also became obsessed with all things concerning The Mix.
Twila-Amoure: The first question I have to ask is, what exactly is The Mix?
Austin: The Mix is a talk show for the new generation, it’s for our generation! Even though we talk about almost everything, we focus on everyday topics and issues that we, as young black millennials, face.
Twila-Amoure: If I didn’t know anything about you or The Mix what would you say to convince me to tune in?
Austin: Well, I’d start off with saying you need to watch this show! There is a lot of talk show out there yes, but they are made for people [who aren’t millennials]. We don’t have a talk show for us, for our age bracket, for the 18-25 year olds, for the college kids. We (the cast of The Mix) feel as if we can be that voice for our generation. We’re all black, we’re all in school, and we’re all destined to be a part of something bigger than ourselves.
Twila-Amoure: I know that you and your cast members all attend Norfolk State University which is an HBCU, and you stated that you’re all black, do you think that non-black college students will be able to find something to relate to while watching The Mix?
Austin: Oh Yes! Honestly that’s why I have 7 different panelist, trust me, there will be at least one of us you can relate too. When I picked my cast, I didn’t want them all to be the same person. There is someone from the hood, the suburbs, someone who had it easy, and someone who had it hard. We all come from different walks of life. Our main focus is to bring education to black college kids and the black community, but we don’t discriminate. We talk about topics that almost anybody can find an interest in, no matter what color they may be.
Twila-Amoure: That’s really good! I feel like our generation truly does need a place we all can call home. I’m really interested in knowing what was it that inspired you to create The Mix? What was your creative process like?
Austin: It all started my freshman year of college and originally the show wasn’t even called The Mix.
Twila-Amoure: wait, really?
Austin: Yea, at first I wanted to put together a show similar to Saturday Night Live, but for college kids, something funny. However, as time went by I guess you can say I grew. I’ve experienced a lot and witnessed a lot. [My vision] turned into something more than [just] comedy. I’ve been through so much and I know other college students have been through a lot as well. That’s why I created this show, The Mix, to discuss what we all go through. I wanted it to be something bigger than just a few laughs.
Twila-Amoure: I can definitely respect that. Being completely honest, what would you say has been the hardest challenge in taking the idea of The Mix and turning it into a reality?
Austin: The biggest challenge I faced was finding the right cast and crew for this project. Honestly, a lot of people will say that they’re down for the cause, until it’s actually time to be down for the cause. Finding people that shared the same dedication that I have was hard, really hard, but thank God that I [eventually] did. So huge shoot out to my cast and crew, they’re amazing!
Twila-Amoure: Speaking of your cast and crew, tell me what is the atmosphere like when you all come together for meetings or to film for The Mix?
Austin: Honestly, no lie, it’s like being with family! Chemistry is everything; it’s hard to work with someone if that’s missing. Before we all had out first meeting, I added everyone to a group chat and right away, we were joking with each other like we’ve been friends for years. I can’t really explain it, but we all just clicked.
(2017 cast of The Mix)
Twila-Amoure: For you, and you’re cast members, what is the goal with The Mix? What message(s) are you guys hoping to portray?
Austin: More than being the voice for our generation, we also want to break stereotypes. We want to show that college kids are paying attention to what’s going on in society today. That young black people do have a voice and our voice matters. With The Mix, our goal is to show that the black community isn’t a “crab in a barrel” kind of community and instead it’s possible for us all to come together and achieve something great.
Twila-Amoure: I love that answer! Without giving too much away, tell me a little on what you and your cast have planned for this upcoming season of The Mix?
Austin: We have so many cool segments planned. Of course there is our table discussions, were we will talk about key issues. But also because we have such a diverse cast, they’re able to bring their own talents to the show as well. For example there is Kandale, who is one of the panelist, and she is so good with fashion. On the show she even has a segment called Kick’n it with Kendale and there she will be discussing the latest fashion trends and offering fashion advice. I myself, I love history, and I have a segment called Way Black When where I will be discussing black history facts. There’s girl talk and even a guy code segment we’re working on. Trust me, there will be a bunch of fun things that people can relate too this season.
Twila-Amoure: Ohh I can’t wait! With you being such a young entrepreneur and the mastermind behind The Mix, what advice would you give other college students, especially black college students, who have a dream of their own and not sure of how to turn it into a reality?
Austin: It’s as simple as; if you want to do it, anything, then you have to be focused, you really gave to be focused. It took me two years [just] to plan The Mix, and it took some sacrifices. I had to distance myself from certain people, I had to pass up on going to certain places, I had to eliminate all distractions from my life. That way when I dropped this (The Mix) it would be perfect. The best advice I could give anyone with a dream is to stay focused and always stay committed.
Twila-Amoure: Lastly, before we end this interview, is there anything I didn’t ask and you want to say?
Austin: I really just want everybody to know that we’re doing this for you guys! We’re doing this for the culture. And I know that’s a popular saying right now “do it for the cultural” but we are serious. Anybody that’s going to read this interview I want you know that The Mix is for you.
By the time my interview with Austin came to a close I really did feel that The Mix was for me and I’m honestly looking forward to the first episode. Representation is, and will always be, a major key! I’m so happy that we, as young black millennials, finally have a talk show that was made by us and is for us! The Mix first episode will officially be out March 24th on their YouTube channel! Be sure to subscribe and check out their other social media platforms as well!
Also, feel free to watch The Mix cast questionnaire episode. I promise that after viewing this, you too will be obsessed on all things concerning The Mix.
Twila-Amoure McDaniel43 Posts
Twila-Amoure McDaniel is a college student who is majoring in both communications and film studies. When she isn't in class she is more than likely somewhere making videos for her YouTube channel. Her passions include writing, art, and film-making and she currently has plans on going into the film industry. Twila-Amoure does have crohn's disease, however she is very determined not to allow that to stop her from achieving all of her goals in life. Be sure to follow her on all on her social media platforms @TwilaAmoure and feel free to browse through Campus Lately for more of her work.