Sounding off

It was terrible. The sound on the video didn’t work, Helen Niland, the director, was telling me after I’d just been to see her latest show Conference Call at the Ecetera Theatre in Camden. Still the night before had been even worse: the sound man hadn’t turned up because he’d had to work late. But with a mixture of downloads and some home-made sounds, the show had gone on.

I hadn’t even noticed the sound hadn’t worked on the video. I thought it was meant to be like that – a striking, silent, black and white movie, reflecting the main character’s thoughts. It really conveyed fragments of Martin Mills’s memories of his missing wife, which he was trying to blank out. It was visually stunning. And the play, by Howard Colyer, was entertaining and well acted.

“A mixture of Pink Floyd meets Orwellian nightmare,” my husband said. I couldn’t have put it better myself.

My stuff from the 1980s…Now that’s what I call a nightmare

Later, I found out that a few TV crackles and ticking clocks had been missing. As it turned out, hearing about the sound problems, no matter how unnoticeable to me as a member of the audience, turned out to be my own wake-up call.

Ohmigod. We need a Plan B for Martini Bond, in case Plan A, which has yet to be drawn up, doesn’t work on the night. Of course, being a James Bond parody, we are very likely to use music from the films. I’ve also written in sounds of avalanches, explosions and plane crashes. And let’s not mention the laser scene…Perhaps we should just cut it?

No wonder Martini Bond is non-profit making. Special effects are expensive… ok, on a budget in austerity Britain they are probably not that expensive and not that special. Until they don’t work. Then they are extremely special, in fact, and worth whatever price you have to pay to sort it out 30 minutes before the show starts.

July 23, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Blogging, Comedy, Comedy writing, Fiction, Humour, Publishing, Theatre.


  1. Lisa Ann Hayes replied:

    Great post – the life of an artist. It’s the little things that count to us, but do others notice? I know we do. I just produced a 5-minute promo video for a Performing Arts Center act and the fact that the makeup woman didn’t bring the right false eyelashes for the women performers bothered me greatly. To me, perception is completed one detail at a time!

  2. 4amWriter replied:

    Plan Bs are always a good idea, but somehow so much harder to come up with than Plan A. Good luck!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback URI

%d bloggers like this: