We recorded the actors in roles of the characters we created, and let them improvise with very little direction. This allowed them more flexibility to get into the character. However, we were a man down so i stepped forward =D. I was recorded as the Jason’s friend.
Once we had the initially clips of audio, we played them to other peers. There was a mixed response in the feedback we got. We only went in with raw audio, we had edited it, trimmed it down and placed it in a predetermined order but had not added beeps, answer phone voices or other telephone related sounds. Some comments were on how dull it was. They appreciated it was not yet finished and only contained recorded audio but it was too flat, there was no conversation. Another prominent comment was to reduce the level of distortion we had used – however, we felt that audio quality was lost as it was being played through laptop speakers as opposed to the big speakers we had used.
So we went back to the drawing board and made some changes. Firstly, Jason’s voicemail recording needed to change and as we could not get hold of the actor who had previously done it, I did the voice of Jason. Scott then re-recorded what I had said as Jason’s mate, although he made him more concerned about Jason’s situation and less judgemental. It worked better. Champion. We had given up trying to work with the actors by this point and instead used Ally as the answer phone voice. She sounded rather authentic I felt.
Bearing in mind the comment that our audio was too ‘flat’ we decided to include a conversation in it, rather than just monologues. We had tried this when I had done the voice for Jason’s friend, with someone interrupting me and asking me a question about the situation and me discussing it with them. It clearly did not work. So this time we decided to pull the conversation out of the voicemails, over the top of them. We proposed that Jason had just got back from a trip; so he starts to go through his numerous voicemails; during which his mum walks into his room (we made a knocking door noise) and engages him in conversation. After we put all the audio clips together and overlayed the conversation all we had then to do was include the beeps which we found on a free sound clip program.
I think it’s a successful Audio Drama. One note. Never work with actors. The act like actors. Not like people with excellent acting skills!
Some pics of the editing stage: