Nativity cast

Blogmas 22: Audio drama excitement

Today was the final edition of Let Them Hear of the year and we presented a two hour show, featuring an interview with Catholic chaplain Father John and a very exciting audio drama of a modernised Nativity story.

This was my first foray into the world of audio dramas and I kicked off the experience with a bang – I adapted, produced and starred in the drama and I loved every minute. We were blessed with a wonderful albeit small cast of Clement Jones, Miranda Hersey and Julia Ingles-Taylor (sorry for spelling) plus my regular co-presenter Rachael Rampat – all of them helped bring the story to life and were complete naturals, despite only reading the script minutes before we recorded.

Once our recording was done, we needed post-production. A few volume adjustments were needed as we were working with five people and only two mics – no matter how hard you try, you can’t situate yourself perfectly with a microphone when you have to share! This required Audacity AND Myriad SmoothEdit but I got there in the end – Adobe Audition would have got the job done perfectly but also has the disadvantage of costing a considerable amount.

One of the most stressful but also most fun parts of post-production was the sound effects. I have been fascinated with Foley since 2005 when I saw an episode of Doctor Who Confidential focusing on how sound effects are made for the TV show outside of the actual sound recording on set – it’s no wonder I’m now looking to go into sound! I’m not sure how far the sound effects we used could actually be classed as Foley but I had great fun wandering around the Students’ Union looking for a good door to show Joseph’s exit and also standing on the platform at the train station on the way to London trying not to look weird with my dictaphone (I did the same at Caffe Gondola but it made an amazing crowd sound!)

The last part of editing our audio drama was to put it all together with relevant music. We were able to showcase a range of lesser known artists featured on Noisetrade with new versions of classic hymns and I think we did a good job of charting the Nativity through both drama and music!

Did you listen to Let Them Hear this morning? Did you enjoy the audio drama? Let me know! I’ll be posting a link to the podcast once it is uploaded (and my internet problems have subsided)

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Head of Training, Insanity Radio 103.2FM

Almost three months ago, Insanity Radio held its annual elections, at which the new board for 2016/17 was decided. After much deliberation I ran for the position of Head of Training and was duly elected.

My main responsibilities are training and organising pre-recorded and holiday content, which includes the summer schedule that begins tomorrow! My handover period has therefore been pretty hectic, with multiple spreadsheets and emails designed to organise the lives of the many presenters and a few concerned conversations about stress levels. However, being busy is what I like and I am so excited to see what is in store for the next year with a fantastic board.

It’s weird to think that a conversation with the lovely Charlotte Mason, now Station Manager, who I barely knew at the time, and Ceri-Ann (my predecessor) in a toilet at the union bar when we were celebrating the 4th anniversary of Insanity going FM has now become a reality but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Being on the board also means I am obliged to, nay want to, get involved in various other roles like helping with the stall at the Magna Carta Festival yesterday on Egham High Street (pictured) and going to socials (the first of which featured my first ride in an Uber). Most importantly, I get to share the wonders of Insanity with others and help make the station the best it can be!

#YesAllWomen – Insanity Radio comes to Radio 1

Royal Holloway has always been proud of its feminist history and when Radio 1 asked student radio stations to create a playlist which reflects students lives, Insanity members were quick to look to the strong female influences in music to represent our university’s rich history. Members suggested a wide range of songs and one of our own presenters, Hannah Turner, is bringing the playlist to life on Monday at 9pm on BBC Radio 1. We’re very excited to hear a piece of our little community station on a national platform, and I’m personally looking forward to hearing the sweeper we made to promote it across Insanity Radio 103.2FM tonight and tomorrow, featuring the vocal talents of myself, Ben and Jamie (whose editing talents were also prominent).

You can listen to the show on BBC Radio 1 at 9pm on Monday 23rd May and catch up on BBC iPlayer Radio via the Radio 1 website.

Tim and Beth on Let Them Hear with Lizzy Fretwell

Podcasts for Let Them Hear

On Thursday we proudly aired the first edition of Let Them Hear live on Insanity Radio 103.2FM, co-presented by myself and Tim Telford alongside special guest Lizzy Fretwell, president-elect of the Christian Union at Royal Holloway, University of London. I will admit that I was anticipating a lot more opposition and indifference from people around the media suite but everyone was very chilled and encouraging about the show, which made us a lot calmer! Highlights include Shakespeare or Bible? and Lizzy’s wonderfully natural chat about the CU and the Bible verse of the week and the full show can be accessed via the playlist below, which should also take you to our future shows!

Next week we have Hannah from Christ Church Virginia Water coming in with more games and great music, including a song close to my heart from Melissa Hubert. Tune in 11am-12pm every Thursday on Insanity Radio 103.2FM.

Let Them Hear on Insanity Radio 103.2FM

Yesterday saw the start of a new term and therefore a new schedule for Insanity Radio 103.2FM, the community radio station based at Royal Holloway, University of London. For the last two terms I have been presenting a weekly entertainment breakfast/afternoon show entitled Entertaining History, which I have really enjoyed and have been well supported with. However, recently my friend Tim and I both had the same idea for a radio show concept, which has excitingly just been accepted into the schedule on Thursdays 11am-12pm. This is a completely different show to Entertaining History – there are two of us presenting for a start and it is a specialist show.

What is our specialism? We are both from the local parish church in Egham, St John’s, and really wanted to share the wonderful music we hear in Christian circles and challenge the idea that Christians are boring and sing hymns in harmony all the time. Inevitably we will also talk a bit about the songs and the sentiments behind them and also involve local churches with guests to tell us about their lives as Christians. We are called Let Them Hear after a similar show on Leeds Student Radio (you can find their show on Facebook), who took the name from Matthew 11:15 ‘Whoever has ears, let them hear’ (NIV). We really want people to hear the wonderful music we are playing and know about the activities of Christian faith groups in the area so they can find their own opportunity to hear the gospel, or just enjoy the amazing game that we will be playing live on air!

You can hear our very first show on Thursday 28th April, 11am-12pm on Insanity Radio 103.2FM across North Surrey and South East Berkshire, and across the world online at http://www.insanityradio.com/listen. You can also keep up to date with what’s going on with the show at our Facebook page – http://www.facebook.com/letthemhearinsanity.

Entertaining History

Since starting out with presenting on Insanity Radio 103.2FM in October 2015, I have presented a weekly entertainment show surrounding historical events in the past related to the week, entitled Entertaining History (credit to Producer Conor, who came up with the name six weeks in, hence why my first few shows are entitled ‘Beth’s Show’). In the player below you can hear all of the podcasts, from my second ever show to the final edition in March 2016, and hopefully hear me grow in confidence and engage with some wonderful guests, discussing all manner of historical and general topics.

Initially I was on air on Mondays, 3-4pm, and in second term moved to Thursdays, 10-11am, taking on a few cover shows as well, notably on Bonfire Night and Valentine’s Day.