Tag Archives: BBC

Taking Pride by storm in Media

13 Jul

Hey Mediadreamzers

 

When Summer arrives, make the most of being out and about, and I did just that. Headed to London yesterday to attend the Royal Television Society event that addressed the issue of LBGT portrayed in TV soap storylines. Made it to London without any delays; it’s S’s-Law and I’m sure you will agree with me that when you are traveling to events, something usually happens; delays, cancellations, stormy weather the list goes on. Either way, made it to the Hospital Club and was early, so waited until the event was open to attendees. Found a seat in the gallery room and others started arriving and there was a group of 3 who sat next to me and we got chatting and I learned that they worked for ITV & BBC. So for me, that was a good surprise and we all chatted on what areas of media we work in, how we found out about the event and what our passions are.

 

Soon the speakers on the events panel arrived and took their seats on stage. The speakers were, wait for it, Oliver Kent- Head of Continuity in Drama series, BBC Studios, Pete Lawson Writer on EastEnders, Bryan Kirkwood- Executive Producer Hollyoaks, Iain MacLeod- Series Producer Emmerdale, and some of the actors from the soaps; Daniel Brocklebank- Corrie, Annie Wallace & Krupa Pattani -Hollyoaks. The panel was chaired by June Sarpong MBE- who is known for being a presenter on ‘Loose Women’, and also a panelist on Sky’s The Pledge program.

The topics discussed and questions asked, combined with a series of clips depicting LGBT storylines made the event as a whole really interesting and also a huge eye opener, with the actors, characters, and impact, they have on society as a whole. One story that was shared was Daniel mentioning an encounter he had with a lady in a supermarket saying very hurtful things, to which he gave a response that totally shut this woman up.  Other issues that were discussed were the Ofcom complaints, watershed time showings, relationships, cultural communities and the about individuals in the series and in real life coming out to their parents and loved ones and the psychological effect and the fear they have, especially with family traditions, religion, and social acceptance. Other areas that haven’t or have been touched on briefly were discussed and how there is still time in the future to create and develop those ideas for television audiences to see.

     

 

              

 

The floor was then open up to questions from the audience, followed by thank yous to the guest speakers, June and the CEO of the Royal Television Society Theresa Wise. Then, of course, the networking started and people started walking up to the guest speakers saying how much they enjoyed the discussion and topics/ opinions they felt about the series, storylines and their perceptions on certain issues. I admit for me it was really cool getting to speak to Annie, Krupa and Bryan and I asked him a question about one of the characters in Hollyoaks and his response was ‘I’m glad you didn’t ask that question on the mic’ as that character is still being developed. Also speaking the Emmerdale and EastEnders Producers was great too, meeting the people behind these soaps is one of those moments in life where you think ‘I never thought this would happen to me, meeting you’. I say that because although I work in this industry I sometimes think that there is a line or a barrier I am one side and those well known and established are on the other side and there is a ‘Do Not Cross this line’ sign in the middle. But every once in awhile it is nice to step over even if it is for a minute, an evening or a day to talk to individuals and say who you are.

Soon the numbers started to diminish as people left and I decided to head back out of London, had a fun evening and I learned a clever lesson when traveling to Euston station if you are going somewhere don’t get a tube train going the opposite direction. my trick getting on the wrong compass bound tube and ending up in Kensington. No matter, a simple walking over to the other side fixed everything.

 

I have also heard back from a director I worked with last year who mentioned a production that is being filmed in September, so I am hoping I am free to help out even if it is for a few days. He has also put in a requested for baked treats, moral booster for the cast and crew, well it helps when filming in the sticks and it’s cold and people have been working long days. September will soon be here.

 

Nunquam Deditioneum

 

 

 

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Back to BAFTA

21 Jun

Hey Mediadreamzers

 

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I wish I could have written a post about a Media Summer Party with the Crewing Company but as it was raining and thundering it didn’t happen. So I’ll share with you my night at the BAFTA House for a preview screening on an updated adaptation of the Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad. Initially I thought the first day of Summer being yesterday was gonna be one of rain, rain and more rain but the afternoon sunshine all around thank you god. Managed to get to the Capital o.k and the one thing I like about the London Underground is that Oxford Circus has really cool coloured titles on the walls, sort of reminds me of a Kaleidoscope. As much as I wanted to admire the walls I had to get to Piccadilly Circus and I made it the sun was out and the Paparazzi were outside waiting for celebs and special guests. I was surprised by the how many people turned up for the screening, granted that the theatre wasn’t full to burst but it was full-ish.

 

After introductions from the BBC head of Communications and BAFTA President the screening commenced.  I admit I don’t remember the whole of the synopsis for Secret Agent but the hour segment was brilliant and saw a lot of British talent on screen; Toby Jones, Vicky McClure, Ian Hart, Stephen Graham, David Dawson just to name a few. The bare bones of the story is this Shopkeeper Verloc is instructed to bomb Greenwich Observatory and provoke the British government into cracking down on violent extremists. Caught between the Russians and the British police, Verloc drags his unsuspecting family into a tragic terror plot.

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After the screening a Q&A followed which was chaired by Mark Lawson; Journalist, Broadcaster and Author, many remember him from Radio 4, well tonight he put his questions to the guests on stage; Toby Jones and Vicky McClure, Writer Tony Marchant and Director Charles McDougall. The floor was opened up to audience members and then the night came to an end, though the funny thing, well two funny things were this; first was Toby Jones walking right past me and the other was that as I was leaving the BAFTA House I encountered Mark and spoke to him before heading towards the Underground.

The journey out of London wasn’t as long as I thought it was gonna be I wonder if it had anything to do with the fact that Tuesday is and was the longest day on the calendar, either way I made it back and had a blast that night. My next media event is looking to be in July where I will be heading out to Elstree and Borehamwood the land of EastEnders and Harry Potter territory (nothing to do with these guys but something else coming up).

Nunquam Deditioneum

Near the end, ready for the next chapters

30 Nov

Hi Mediadreamerz

It has been a little quiet regarding media work with the fast approach to Christmas, I do have one more media job next week which I am looking forward to and then its a case of waiting for 2015 and starting planned projects, and see what the future holds too.

Although I had fun on Wednesday travelling in the rain for a chat with members of the BBC Drama Village production team and finding out what is happening in the realm of production next year. As soon as I walked through the door to the building to the reception area the security team saw me and I was greeted with ‘Hello Stranger, longtime no see’. Something I never bargained for, nor expected as the last time I saw them was in January/ February, it was nice that they remembered me.

Once in they asked me what I had been up to and I started talking about productions and how I’d applied for a role on one the the BBC Birmingham productions and how I was unsuccessful, and then I got a bit of a surprise; at that exact moment a member of the drama production team walked by heard what I’d said and asked what area of work I am in, with production and after I told him he said he would get my details from the production team ready for next year. Big surprise there and as they say its all word of mouth and not what you know, but who.

I then met Steve and his colleague Kate and after finding a free office chatted about productions, opportunities, current experiences and recent projects I have worked on, where I see myself in the near distant future, why media/ drama and what the status of production is currently at. Steve and Kate explained a bit about their backgrounds and how they/ BBC Birmingham functions with regard to crew and other projects individuals move to work on so they get additional experiences and progress forward. Although production has ended this year, production resumes second week on January and then they will be scouting crew for new productions and will be selecting people to help out, hopefully I will be one of those individuals.

Until then it is one more media job to complete and then final preparations for Christmas (strange I started in October, but at least I only have a few things left to sort then its all done).

So next week busy but exhausting,

Nunquam Deditioneum

Trains, Strangers and a whole lotta networking

13 Mar

Hi fellow mediadreamz readers and those who follow me (to the many that do, thank you, it means a lot).

I have a great day heading to Birmingham for an event at the Library of Birmingham. As the event started at 11am I caught an early train, as I had no idea where I was going, funny thing me doing that as I ended up running into a customer I serve at Tesco and we had a good old catch-up as well as meeting a friend and colleague of his named Chrissy. Before going to find the venue I did my good deed for the day; took a lady to the Mailbox as she didn’t know where it was so I had a lot of time to spare. I then helped a guy find Queensway in Birmingham (if all fails in the TV/ Film industry, I can be a tour guide).

Got the the library in plenty of time and saw a lot of familiar faces and people which I had a great catch-up with. Spent the first hour meeting people and handing out loads of business cards before going to an induction session opened by a guy by the name of James and after being introduced to the guest speakers for the days events. Before everything started it was lunch and networking, though that was a let down of the day, a few trays of finger food and hardly anyone got anything to try. During the lunch break I got to talk to the guests who were attending, and it was during this time that I got a marriage proposal. How and why you may ask, explanation; two guys were looking for where the food was, only thing available was spicy asian cheese tarts, I noticed a tray of satay chicken and mentioned this. I was praised for my observation skills and one of the guys said ‘will you marry me, I won’t take no for an answer’. (Though I later learned both of these guys were both guest speakers and are writers in drama and comedy, guess which genre my proposal came from). It remained our private joke throughout the day.

First session I went to dealt ‘Skills for Success-Keeping your edge in a competitive changing environment’ with Creative Skills set talking about traineeships, opportunities and funding available for training up and down the UK. Second session ‘Film Finance Workshop’ was a Creative England talk where we were informed of film funding and grands to finance productions in and outside of Birmingham. The Third and final session ‘Getting and sustaining a career in the media’. It was here that I received a big shock seeing the two guys who had spoken to me who I later learned were William Gallagher who is famous for radio Doctor Who, ITV’s ‘Crossroads’ and a wide range of other drama programmes. The other guy was Keith R Lindsay, the man who proposed, who is known for working on ‘Birds of a feather’, ‘The green green grass’ which was co-written with John O’Sullivan a legend in himself. Another writer on the panel was Claire Bennett, a drama writer who has worked on ‘Doctors’ and ‘Holby City’. Out of all of these sessions this was my favourite, as it was relaxed and free flowing whereas the other two were regimental. Plus we could speak freely in the session and it was more humorous talking from all panel speakers.

Eventually the day came to an end and after hearing a summary of the day and about coming to future summit events. Then it was time to leave before heading home, and once on the train i met to people who started talking to me (I wonder if I have a face that invites people to talk to me, is there anyone else who had a face like that?) When we started talking one of the ladies told me her son works as a Art Director, and I immediately handed her my business card and it was my last one, which made to journey home even more sweeter.

So a productive day and I have projects in the pipeline and more to come soon, very soon

Keep reading

Runner Run, Run, Run

27 Feb

I am glad I have a moment to take a pew to write my latest media activity. I have spent the last two and half days in Birmingham working with a brilliant production team, on a well-known daytime drama. I cannot give too much away as that would be spoiling, but I can tell you what my experience was like. I was at the office for 7.30am to be on set for 8.30am and I admit working a 12hr shift really does take it out of you. Everyone was really welcoming to me during my first day work shadowing on a drama, and as many people have said drama is totally different to any other type of programme/ genre out there, and boy they were not wrong there. Everyone asked me the usual questions; where had I come from, was I at uni, what were my career ambitions, what other projects had I worked on etc.

The first day was over quick than you could say thats a wrap, and once I got back to my hotel room all I did was watch TV and eat cereal (I know its not the best gourmet meal, but I did not have the energy to eat something hot).

My second day was being out and about with the crew on four locations and it was cold. I felt sorry for the crew and actors out there, so I gave them some spare hand warmers to help ward off the coldness they all felt. I got talking to some of the extras and other members of the crew, who were praising me for my tea/ coffee/ snack providing skills, and just like yesterday it ended so fast. Once back at base, and packed away everyone thanked me for helping out; I got a hug from the director and 1st AD both wanted me to stay longer on the filming. The director and 1st AD both suggested to me that I find out if I could come back in the foreseeable future, to help out again, or on another production in Birmingham, in order to get more experience. So I did just that and now I await to see what happens. One thing I will remember from the final day was when I  was saying good-bye to the director, he wished me luck in my ventures and said that everything I was doing was right, and to keep going no matter what, so I won’t surrender and will persevere on.

My next opportunity is helping out on a music video for two days, I’ve never helped out on anything like that so lets see how that goes.

As a final note I want to say that the team I worked with were totally awesome and made me feel really welcome and it will be an experience I definitely won’t forget too quickly, you guys were the best.

Come rain or shine (or even snow)

18 Jan

Well this was certainly the case for me and an enormous amount of the population in the UK. Although everyone was advised to stay in-doors, I braved the ice climate of the beast of the east (thank you Russia) to get my destination; Birmingham. Normally, I venture into this region for my placement at Creative England, this time it was to head to BBC Drama Village. Although my first train was a little late, I got to Birmingham with time to spare to catch my next train out to Selly Oak. Once there I ventured out in the ankle high soon to BBC Drama, for my chat/ interview. I met another guy who was there for the same reasons I was and we shared our stories of the snow and how we nearly never made it in time. Although the team interviewing me were running a little late, I didn’t mind, as it gave me a chance to not only prepare but also saw some of the cast for ‘Doctors’, which was pretty cool, and soon it was my turn.

My chat lasted for 20mins, and it was mainly about my experiences, scenarios and programmes I like, what I know about BBC Birmingham Drama. Hopefully, this moves in a good direction in that I am invited back to work shadow or just be there to see what is going on, or in the pipeline for the future. When it came to walking back to the train station I had this worry I was gonna miss my train for getting home, but thankful for some mercies. The train back in to Birmingham was late by two minutes, and luckily made it back to the East Midlands before the major delays and cancellation of trains started.

 

More to come in the next few days/ weeks so provided the weather clears up then I can fulfil this promise.

Is there a doctor in the house?

30 Mar

No I am not sick if that is what you think from the title of my blog, though the focus of this is on my trip to Brimingham. After getting up at the crack of dawn, I took a long drive down the M1, M69 and M6 to head to where I need to be. I had been warned by others that the M6 is a road not to mess with, however I managed it ok, I guess its because I went so early and because it was a great morning. Even though it has been a while since I set foot in Birmingham, it made a change driving into the city, rather than catching a train in. The place is question I was heading to was Archibald House, where the BBC film the TV series ‘Doctors’. All of this came out of the blue yesterday when I received a phone call from one of the producers, who invited me to meet the team behind the series. It was a good thing as I mentioned before that I went earlier than the time I had arranged as I’d heard the motorway can be a nightmare. Despite my satnav constantly telling me to make a u-turn, I felt like I was literally going round the bend until I saw the street near to where I needed to be. I just pulled into one of the car parks and saw a police car with a BBC sign in it, and although I was over an hour early I decided to wait before playing the explorer. Luckily I saw someone who had just pulled up onto the site, and I asked him about where Archibald House was. He then asked me what it was in connection with and after mentioning that I was meant to be meeting one of the producers, the guy introduced himself as one of the dubbing mixers for the series ‘Doctors’, and showed me where I needed to go. So it really was a stroke of luck meeting someone who is part of the team.

I made my way to Archibald House and I was blown away by the beauty of the building, especially the wooden doors, it certainly reminded me of a gothic victorian house and the inside wow the inside was just as beautiful. After getting clearance from security, I was introduced to three really nice guys; Gareth, Hardey and Dan, who were the people who interviewed me. Surprisingly, I spent roughly 15-20mins with the guys, and the interview itself I feel went well, so I just have to wait until Easter has gone, and I can hopefully go back to Birmingham to do some work with Doctors, or any other programmes produced by BBC Birmingham.

So I can safely say that I can pass an interview as well as drive on the M1, M69 AND M6, though halfway heading back to the East Midlands my legs went to sleep and could have kissed the ground when I made it home mid-day because I could actually start walking round and getting the feeling back in them. Hopefully, something will happen after this latest holiday has passed, so in the meantime I will be doing loads of baking and bulking up my CV as much as I can.

The other good thing I need to mention is due to my work with vInspired, I received a certificate on Tuesday assessing my role throughout the night, what skills I had demonstrated and what others thought of me during the night. It played an important role when I went to Birmingham. After all of this I think I need to lay down. Keep checking and you will see more of what is going on.

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