American Public Media has cut several positions from its show team for Live from Here.
Three of the staff who lost their jobs had previously worked on A Prairie Home Companion with founding host and creator Garrison Keillor, according to MPR News. They include Marketing Director David O’Neill, Managing Director Kate Gustafson Sanderson, and Keillor’s son Jason, who worked as technical director.
“We weren’t given any reason other than the tightening of the budget of Live from Here, which I do understand,” Jason Keillor told MPR News. “MPR is promoting a very expensive new show, and they’re getting incredible talent. I understand they’re having to budget carefully.”
APM spokesperson Angie Andresen declined to confirm the names of those who lost their jobs. She did confirm that APM eliminated two positions and declined to renew the contract of one employee.
MPR News reported that a fourth staff member has been offered a new assignment.
The staffing shakeup comes as APM considers the future of Live from Here, a variety show hosted by Chris Thile. APM changed the series title in December after breaking ties with Keillor over sexual harassment allegations.
“The changes we are planning require some changes to the team and in how we do some of our work,” Andresen told Current.
“We’ve imagined some new experiences for audiences,” Andresen said. She declined to elaborate on what’s in store for Live from Here. “We’ll share more about these plans in the coming months and as the new season gets underway in the fall.”
“We’re deeply grateful to all those who’ve helped to make this show a growing success, and to those whose jobs have been eliminated or changed,” Andresen said.
Garrison Keillor had retired as host of Prairie Home Companion in 2016, yet the show retained many key staff and continued to be produced under the same title.
Keillor told the Star Tribune, “They’re replacing [Gustafson Sanderson] with a bunch of faceless suits. Good luck with that.”
Live from Here will begin its third season this fall.