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Old 03-13-2008, 01:30 PM   #138
Brian Sibley
Haunting Spirit
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: London
Posts: 54
Brian Sibley has just left Hobbiton.
Originally Posted by davem View Post
So, a few questions for Brian

One aspect of the production that I haven't heard very much about is the part played by the old Radiophonics workshop - I mean, how much time did they put in - & was there much experimentation - I don't suppose you can just come up with a Ringwraith voice, or the sound of a Balrog in a couple of minutes.
Please remember with all these answers this was a long time ago (27 years) so memories are hazy, patchy and often unreliable...

The Radiophonic Workshop actually created relatively few effects: Eagles, the Balrog, the Crack of Doom etc. Most of the effects were created by treating natural recordings: the Ringwraith horses hooves and voices etc and usually by using the technology in the studio, rather than the workshop. The reason for this was the producers' and adapters' desire for the story to be treated as realistically as possible.

Originally Posted by davem View Post
Oh, & one other thing - I know the Ring sound was created by running a finger around the rim of a wine glass - but who came up with that idea? It sounds so right, but would any of us have thought of doing that?
My memory is that the Workshop came up with several effects for the Ring and I seem to remember Stephen Oliver experimenting with sounds on the violin when we were recording all the music tracks - which were recorded before the drama sessions began. Memory tells me it was Stephen or a member of the orchestra who came up with the idea of the glass and the sound was recorded during one of those music recording sessions which we held at the BBC's studios at Maida Vale.

Originally Posted by davem View Post
And, finally for now - what was the largest number of actors in the studio at one time - was the whole Fellowship ever in the studio together?
Goodness... Well, the party scene, the Council of Elrond, the battles and so forth involved a lot of actors - the principles, obviously, but also perhaps a dozen members of the RDC (Radio Drama Company) the repertory of players who (at the time but no longer) were on call for productions and who gallantly played all the 'audio extras' such as the Orcs and other gangs and crowds.

Yes, the Fellowship (prior to the 'Breaking') would have been together pretty much all the time. After the death of Boromir, the schedule was more fractured but all the cast involved in an episode would be there for the rehearsal (usually half a day) but might then come in at different times during the following day of recording so as to avoid having people sitting around for hours with nothing to do.

The recording schedule ran as follows:

Day 1: Morning - rehearse Episode 1; Afternoon - begin recording Ep 1

Day 2: Morning - complete recording Ep 1; Afternoon - rehearse Ep 2

Day 3: Morning and afternoon - record Episode 2

And so on...

A handful of particularly complex episodes were allocated a TWO full days to rehearse and record! It doesn't sound like much - and it was an exhausting schedule - but no drama production today would have the luxury of that much time!
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