The lights come up. Six categories appear in a grid on the blue screen. And, finally, the well-known jingle begins to play.
For Jade Ryan, this was not on a television screen — this was a reality.
Ryan, a 25-year-old UF English senior, will appear on an episode of “Jeopardy!,” a trivia television show, at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
“I’ve been joking for years, like, all I want is to do is be on Jeopardy,” Ryan said. “I have to do something with all this random knowledge.”
Ryan decided to apply to be on the game show because she’s watched it since she was a child. The first step in the application process was a 50-question online trivia test, where participants had 20 to 30 seconds to answer a question, Ryan said.
Months later, Ryan received a call from producers inviting her to the show for filming on Dec. 5, conveniently around the same time as UF finals week.
“I just told my professors, look, I have a really good reason for not being there the last week of class, and they were all really awesome about it,” Ryan said.
Ryan said she studied by watching previous episodes of the show and practicing old questions.
She flew to Los Angeles where “Jeopardy!” producers taped five shows, Ryan said.
“I was shaking,” Ryan said. “I was just trying to be calm because it’s my one shot to do this.”
Ryan was not allowed to disclose whether or not she won.
Dan Ryan, Jade Ryan’s dad, said watching his daughter on the taping of “Jeopardy!” was surreal. He said he is proud of Ryan’s accomplishments and looks forward to her to starting graduate school.
Jade Ryan, a 25-year-old UF English senior, will appear on an episode of “Jeopardy!,” a trivia television show, at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 5.