8.10 Dr Chris Smith: Covid-19 science news

Our regular commentator, Cambridge University consultant clinical virologist Dr Chris Smith joins us with the latest Covid-19 science, and to answer your questions.

This week Dr Smith will be discussing vaccines and why some people are reluctant; why having Covid-19 vaccinations 6-8 weeks apart may be beneficial; and the UK’s daily coronavirus cases appear to be falling experts aren’t exactly sure why.

Send your questions for Dr Chris Smith to saturday@rnz.co.nz or text 2101.

Many in Japan are expressing anger that the Olympics are scheduled to go ahead during the pandemic.

Photo: 123rf


8.30  Brett Graham: bringing the land wars into the present

On Friday night artist Brett Graham (Ngāti Koroki Kahukura, Tainui) received an Arts Foundation of New Zealand Laureate Award. His father sculptor Fred Graham is one of the Foundation’s circle of only 20 Icon award winners.

Graham is one of New Zealand’s most celebrated sculptors and artists, exploring historical Māori Pakeha relations and current environmental and political issues through the language of architecture, carving, and contemporary art.

Just opened at City Gallery Wellington is Tai Moana Tai Tangata, an exhibition developed with the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery in New Plymouth which, on its debut in Taranaki was described as one of the most impressive and ambitious solo exhibitions in recent times.

With large ornately carved objects including what resemble colonial memorials, gun turrets and a pataka on a carriage as well as moving image works, Graham interrogates the history of the Taranaki Land Wars, relating it to key issues today.



9.05 Ben Rhodes: Obama adviser releases new book After The Fall

Ben Rhodes was a speechwriter, national security adviser, and right-hand man to US President Barack Obama for eight years. Following his time in the White House, Rhodes wrote an insider account entitled The World As It Is, which made the New York Times Bestseller list. He has now followed up with a new book, After The Fall: Being American In The World We Made.

Compelled to get away from what was happening in the States after Trump took office, Rhodes talked to politicians activists and dissidents from Myanmar, Hungary, Russia and Hong Kong who are confronting the same nationalism and authoritarianism that is tearing America apart. 

Rhodes is also the host of weekly podcast Pod Save The World.

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Photo: Supplied / AFP


10.05 Prof David Hutchinson: New Zealand leading the next computer revolution

Dunedin-based quantum physicist Professor David Hutchinson believes New Zealand can lead the world in what is considered to be the next computer revolution, photonics. 

Photonics is the science of light and is being used in increasing and wider numbers of applications, improving efficiency and speed. The photonics industry in New Zealand is said to be worth at least $1.2 billion and growing 10 percent each year.

In July the government began providing an additional $36.75 million funding over the next seven-and-a-half years to the Dodd-Walls Centre for Photonic and Quantum Technologies, of which Hutchinson is director. 

Professor David Hutchinson

Photo: Alan Dove

10.30 Dianne Ludwig: welcoming back slow fashion

For most of her professional life Ludwig worked in the corporate world, but when she retired she decided to start a small hobby business selling vintage clothing online under the moniker Welcome Back Slow Fashion - the name a nod to her spurning of the fast fashion industry.

Now the hobby has become a full-time job and Ludwig is known for her brilliant eye. Part fashion detective and part fashion encyclopaedia, Dianne chooses each vintage garment with care and sells them via her popular Instagram page, all the while advocating for people to buy less, and love each piece more.

Dianne Ludwig of Welcome Back Slow Fashion

Photo: Supplied


11.05 Jock Zonfrillo: from drug addict to top Australian chef

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Photo: Supplied

He’s a familiar face on our television screens as one of the judges for popular cooking show MasterChef Australia, but the path to success has been a rocky one for Jock Zonfrillo.

Born in Glasgow to an Italian father and Scottish mother, Zonfrillo's formative years were heavily influenced by both cultures and he was attracted to the dynamic environment of high-pressure kitchens. Eventually he found himself working in London alongside top chefs like Gordon Ramsay and David Cavalier. 

But a crippling heroin addiction and a world of excess saw Zonfrillo spiral out of control. Now he shares the story of hitting rock bottom and the turning point that saved him in new memoir, Last Shot.

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Photo: Supplied

11.35 Chris Mosier: the trailblazing transgender athlete 

Chris Mosier was the first transgender athlete to represent the United States in international competition, after earning a spot on Team USA’s sprint duathlon men’s team in the 2016 World Championship.

Then in 2020, Mosier became the first openly transgender male athlete to compete in an Olympic trial alongside other men; however he was unable to finish the race due to injury.

He says Laurel Hubbard competing in Tokyo 2020 is meaningful, not only to the trans- community as a whole, but personally as he has spent “the last decade of my life trying to lay the groundwork for this moment“.

Mosier is also the founder of transathete.com, a resource to find information about trans inclusion in athletics at various levels of play.

American transgender athlete Chris Mosier

Photo: Twitter / Chris Mosier


Books mentioned in this show:

After The Fall: Being American In The World We Made
By Ben Rhodes
ISBN: 9781526642059
Imprint: Bloomsbury Publishing

Last Shot
By Jock Zonfrillo
ISBN13: 9781761101915
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Australia


Music played on the show:

By Lucy Dacus
Played at 8.30am