The One Show

The One Show is the world's most prestigious award show in advertising and design. For over 50 years, the Gold Pencil has been regarded as one of the top prizes in the creative industry. The One Show has a rich legacy of honoring some of the most groundbreaking ideas, created by some of the most remarkable minds in creativity.

2023 One Show - Music & Sound Craft

Independent Journalism for an Independent Life - Questlove

Agency Wave Studios / New York + Droga5 / New York + division7 + Cut+Run / New York

Client The New York Times


Sound Mixing

Annual ID


About the Work

“Independent Journalism for an Independent Life” is a campaign that turned the focus onto New York Times readers for the first time, showing that what you read can inspire who you are. For this film, we look to tell the story of iconic subscriber Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, celebrating the point where his curiosity collides with the values of our independent journalism—helping to inspire his rich, unique and interesting life. To launch the second phase of the campaign, The New York Times chose to spotlight award-winning director, musician and producer Questlove who is a longtime news reader, contributor, Wordle fan and Times subscriber since 2020. We wanted to capture a side of him that nobody had ever seen before—painting an intimate portrait of who he is, beyond his music, through the stories he reads. Using headlines, journalistic imagery, sound design and shot footage, we fill the screen with life. Toggling between static and moving imagery—journalism and life—we use Times imagery to punctuate key moments in the story, and vibrant full-bleed footage of Questlove to reflect the depth and richness of his life. Every live moment was thoughtfully captured to immerse you in Questlove’s world, all while maintaining the legibility of the headline overlay. The headlines themselves are threaded together from the stories Questlove has read—capturing who he is, how he thinks and how his experience with The Times has helped shape his independent life. The words come together in a rhythmic prose supported by the voice of Questlove himself, bringing you in even closer to his world. Questlove's film is dense with layers, meaning and idiosyncrasies. All these dimensions come together to give you a better understanding of how central our journalism is to the identity of its readers.

2023 Awards

Total Points: 45



Droga5 / New York

Production Company


Music / Sound Production Company

Wave Studios / New York

Post Production Company

Cut+Run / New York

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