Jens Riewa: More than "just" a newsreader

The ARD "Tagesschau" has always presented Jens Riewa seriously and confidently since 1994.

Jens Riewa: More than "just" a newsreader

The ARD "Tagesschau" has always presented Jens Riewa seriously and confidently since 1994. Privately, on the other hand, he really let it rip one or the other. Professionally, he is also available for many TV jokes apart from the news broadcast. On July 2nd he will be 60 years old.

Maybe on his special day, he'll upload another funny clip to his Instagram page. From time to time he reports from his workplace with videos that show him totally distorted. Riewa revealed a few months ago on the Sat.1 show "Stars in the Manege" that he was "actually a funny little guy who sometimes lets the pig out". As chief spokesman for the "Tagesschau" he is not allowed to show that - all the more he seems to enjoy his occasional excursions into less serious areas.

Riewa has been working for the "Tagesschau" since 1991. At first he worked as an off-speaker, since 1994 he has been in front of the camera. In 1995 he was allowed to do his first 8 p.m. show. 25 years later he was promoted to chief spokesman and inherited Jan Hofer (73), who presented his last issue on December 14, 2020. Riewa is "a very experienced and professional spokesman who, in his new role, will make a significant contribution to ensuring that the 'Tagesschau' remains Germany's number 1 news brand," praised NDR director Joachim Knuth (64) at the time.

However, Riewa's rise to the news show was not as straightforward as it reads. Twice his job was even on the brink. In 2002, the spokesman made a lot of headlines after "Bild" quoted him with intimate confessions about his failed relationship with singer Michelle (51). The fact that a serious newsman talks so openly about his sex life struck those responsible at NDR. Two years later, he privately attended an ERC Ingolstadt ice hockey game and shouted a harsh chant against the Iserlohn Roosters into the stadium microphone, which would almost have led to a mass brawl. The then NDR program director Jürgen Kellermeier (1939-2009) warned: "Such gaffes must not be repeated." A second yellow card for Riewa, which he obviously didn't want to turn into a red. Because after that it became quieter around him. Gone are the days when you saw him partying with the Hamburg celebrity scene. He keeps his private life out of the public eye.

Incidentally, the television world and thus a certain life in the spotlight was not on his career planning for a long time. After graduating from high school in Lübben in the Spreewald, he first went to the National People's Army for three years. He then began studying "Construction Technology" in Dresden, but dropped out. He then trained as an air traffic controller. At a benefit event for journalists in Berlin, his later speech teacher discovered him. She convinced him to train as a professional speaker. In 1988 he passed an aptitude test as a news presenter at Radio DDR and presented various programs.

In the early 1990s he moved from Berlin to Hamburg to accept the offer for the "Tagesschau". Since then he has been one of the defining faces of NDR and ARD. He moderated entertainment formats such as "Die Deutsche Schlagerparade", presents the "Hamburg Journal", works as a media coach and dialogue director. He produces audio books and is one of the most booked professional speakers, according to the NDR. He is also a frequent guest in many quiz programs.

With the Sat.1 show "Stars in der Manege", which was broadcast in winter, a childhood dream came true for him. He revealed on the show: "Circus – I associate it with an incredible feeling of happiness. I like to do nonsense, I really like to let out the child in the man. Sometimes I have the impression that I'll never really grow up." It fits that he appeared there as a clown. He was also able to live out his entertainer side on the ProSieben show “The Masked Singer” in 2021 – at least for one show. "I was happy to be able to breathe a little life into the chili. I found myself really extremely hot as a chili," he told the news agency spot on news.

Riewa cannot be tied down to the role of newsreader alone. In 2016 he spoke on the NDR program "Das!" about another part-time job outside of the TV world: model scout and manager. This job was responsible for his weight problems, he admitted at the time. Riewa said he mentored a model in Sydney for luxury brand Armani. "I had to work Australian office hours, it's night time in Europe. It was really nerve-wracking." Thanks to a nutritionist friend of his, he lost 16 kilograms. "Now I'm back to the weight I was hired at NDR in 1991," he joked.