Azzan Schuster: “My radio dream came true”


Strange as it might sound, Fox FM weekend announcer Azzan Schuster has Big Brother to thank for getting him interested in radio.

Watching the TV reality show back in 2012, Azzan was intrigued. He tells Radio Today:

“I was obsessed with the idea that someone was sitting in a booth and talking, AND getting paid for it.”

“It wasn’t until I got drivers’ licence in 2014 and having the radio on constantly that I noticed there were people who would talk in between songs – literally getting paid to not only talk, but listen to music at the same time! “

It was a lightbulb moment.

“I finally knew what my dream job was … a radio announcer.”

Unsure how to break into the industry, Azzan began studying for a Bachelor of Education as he tried to figure out a pathway into radio.

“Then my mum found out that her favourite station (Melbourne’s 89.9 LightFM) was holding a weekend radio workshop.”

Azzan signed up and, on completion of the workshop, put his hand up to volunteer at the station. This led to him working as a producer for the Drive show, hosted by Leroy Brown.

“I was still studying, so some days would see me at uni from 8-2pm, producing from 3-6pm and then working at Coles as a cleaner from 7-10pm for some income.”

Finally, Azzan plucked up the courage to let Leroy know he wanted to get behind the mic.

Leroy (now South Victorian Content Director at SCA) remembers it well, telling Radio Today “Azzan walked into the studio one day asking boldly how he could do what I did on a daily basis.”

“I set him up with some pre-recorded flying hours through Light FM’s Digital station and he grew over the coming months until he was ready to take on a weekend shift with Light FM.”

After almost a year of announcing, Azzan was encouraged to apply for a casual role as the new weekend announcer.

“After some hard work and long days balancing uni life, developing as a volunteer announcer and working at Coles, I got my debut as a paid radio announcer on October 15, 2016 – my 20th birthday.”

Azzan says that role led to some incredible growth opportunities, before he was offered a full-time gig.

“As soon as I got that call, I dropped my Bachelor of Education after 2 and a half years, and I freakin’ made it into full-time radio, baby!”

Azzan says the experience gained at Light FM has been an integral part of his radio journey. Over the past six years, he’s tried his hand at everything from taking calls to bulk-loading outsourced shows, panelling OBs, producing and copywriting, to name just a few.

One day – bored during lockdown – Azzan was scrolling through his LinkedIn feed when a job ad popped up for a casual weekend announcer at Fox FM.

“Literally my dream job was staring at me on my phone screen. There was no way I was going to let that opportunity pass, so I quickly whipped up an aircheck from my work at Light and applied for the job.”

Azzan says he honestly didn’t think he’d get the job, but decided it couldn’t hurt to cast out the line.

Two follow-up calls later – one from ACD James Speed one from CD Amanda Lee – he was offered the job, a moment that’s seared into his memory.

“It was surreal to hear the words from Speedy “You’ve got the gig” over the phone while I was parked at a 7-Eleven in Eltham on my way home from a PT session.”

“Working at Fox is literally a dream come true. I had been a huge Fox fan, listening to Keegs in the morning and Aaron Rich flicking the switch into the weekend, and Tim Lee later down the track.”

“Admittedly, during my own on-air shifts at Light, I would jump onto Flashlog to listen back to their shifts to help me build my own content. I’d even get giddy listening to their World Famous Rooftop and LOVED RnB Fridays.”

“Now I get to work with the radio veterans I look up to (and Tim Lee is now my boss – LIKE WHAAAAA!?) and even host a WFR feature or RnB Fridays on occasion, which blows my mind every time.”

Azzan feels a deep sense of gratitude to those who’ve helped him along the way.

TheLight Content Director MJ Want has given me so many opportunities to develop and grow in so many different areas at Light, so I’m thankful for his leadership and trust throughout.”

“I’m so thankful to still be able to work with Lucy Holmes and Kel McWilliam, who are incredible broadcasters and have been incredibly supportive.”

“Tim Lee is an absolute boss in everything he does, both on and off-air. He’s an inspiration and it’s an absolute treat to learn from him directly.”

“The fortnightly airchecks I get to do with him and Amanda Lee are always something I look forward to and I feed off the wisdom and advice they give me.”

Azzan says Mel Tracina, Clayton Bjelan, Erica Davis and Craig Bruce have also played vital roles in guiding him to success.

“But I’d especially love to acknowledge Leroy Brown. He’s got me where I am now. He saw the potential in me back in volunteering days, decided to grab it, and navigated pathways for me to grow, develop and succeed as a broadcaster – and continues to do so as my mentor.”

“I’ll still find myself sending him Fox airchecks for feedback and he’ll always deliver, just like he did 5 or 6 years ago.”

Leroy says Azzan worked hard on his craft by seeking feedback from various Content Directors around the country to build a great foundation and set himself up for success.

And success is loving what you do.

“Fox has been everything I could’ve imagined and more,” says Azzan. “I am so blessed and honoured to be able to stand inside the famous Clarendon St studios in South Melbourne and broadcast out, giving ‘that Fox feeling’ to the hundreds of thousands of Fox fans tuning in every weekend.”

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Azzans biggest fan
3 Jun 2022 - 9:57 am

This man once saved me from a burning building. Thank you Azzan, thank you.

Euan Burns
3 Jun 2022 - 9:58 am

Azzan literally came in this morning whilst I was on- air to show me that he had made the front page of Radio Today. Love the hustle mate.

7 Jun 2022 - 7:47 am

YES! more “How did it happen” stories! i love hearing how folks have turned their passion for music or radio itself into a career.


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