It’s the very last The Oprah Winfrey Show in the United States today. And while we, in South Africa, still have a couple more months to go before we bid her farewell in this incarnation, the US – and the social networks – are abuzz with all things O.
In the first of what is a two-part farewell show on Tuesday, Madonna was introduced as “This hard-working mother-of-four says The Oprah Winfrey Show means the world to her.” And Beyonce launched a new song, appropriately titled (Run the World) Girls. Madonna told Oprah that it was “no secret that millions of people have been inspired by Oprah and I’m one of those people”.
In the meantime, Twitter is full of questions – and answers.
Jokes aside, by the time we see it in South Africa, there will be no secrets left to reveal. So we thought we’d find out just how the demise of The Oprah Winfrey Show will affect her other brilliant brand, O, The Oprah Magazine.
Editor Sam Page told TheMediaOnline that far from being an end, this is a whole new beginning for the world’s most influential woman, and her magazine.
It’s Oprah’s last show on Wednesday in the US. What happens to O, The Oprah Magazine once the show is off air, at least in this incarnation?
O is evolving, not dissolving. While The Oprah Winfrey Show is closing its doors in the US, the show will still be on South African TV for some time because we are a couple of months behind the US broadcast dates. However, with Oprah’s decision to end The Oprah Winfrey Show and launch OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network), we are looking forward to a whole new era with fresh and inspiring content, in true Oprah style.
Are you worried about not having the talk show to leverage interest in the magazine?
On the contrary, Oprah’s new network (OWN) offers us so much more. Where in the past we had access to only one show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, we’ll now have so many more programmes to access for content in the magazine.
Has Oprah communicated any plans for the magazines, here and in the US, to you?
For us, here in South Africa, and in the US, it is business as usual. O, The Oprah Magazine will remain, as it has always been, one of Oprah’s key projects, since the South African edition is still the only international edition outside of the US. Next year, O celebrates 10 years in SA, and we look forward to commemorating that anniversary in style. OWN is a wonderful addition to all the other Oprah enterprises and, as a result, we have never been more enthusiastic and optimistic about the future.
Are your readers concerned? Have you had requests for info as to the magazine’s future?
No. In Oprah’s words: “We have the opportunity to make a real mark with this magazine. To speak to and touch women in a way no other publication ever has. To convince women that the real work of their lives is becoming more of who they really are.” We will continue to make Oprah’s vision our mission and stay true to the promise of this powerful brand.
Any plans for an O magazine App?
At this stage, O magazine SA is available on Zinio for download on iPad and other computers. We have not launched a true interactive Application, but we are looking at some Applications to bring to market in the not too distant future.
Samantha, as editor of O, how do you personally feel about what can only be regarded as an end of an era?
While it has been wonderful to look back on 25 years of the show in recent weeks, recalling some of the great guests, amazing books and unforgettable moments of sheer joy the show has produced, it really is a time for us to look ahead. I love that Oprah is embracing this new chapter in her life with such positivity and enthusiasm. It has been positively infectious and has given me a renewed sense of optimism and inspiration.
O, The Oprah Magazine is about living your best life, embracing change, stepping out of the box and finding your true purpose, so you can become more of who you already are, and Oprah continues to show women how to do that with aplomb – myself included.