WATCH: TV stars come to Wigan to record new audio drama
A new audio drama featuring the voices of award-winning actors has been recorded in Wigan this week.
Actors Julie Hesmondhalgh and Robert Glenister came to town to lend their voices to Cracking The Feathers, a story which follows a survivor of Electroconvulsive-Therapy (ECT) and her quest to fill in the 10-year long hole the treatment blew in her memory.
Inspired by real events and interviews with ECT survivors, Cracking The Feathers is written and co-produced by Ian Winterton, and stars BAFTA-nominated Julie Hesmondhalgh (Broadchurch, Coronation Street, Doctor Who, Happy Valley) as Wendy.
Alongside Julie is Robert Glenister (Hustle, Spooks and a recent appearance in the latest season of Doctor Who as Thomas Edison) who plays retired GP, Oliver, proud owner of a new canal boat that Wendy finds herself taking a trip on.
The drama has been produced by Bamalam Productions, an audio production team based in Wigan and founded in 2017 by James Steventon and Lauren Sturgess, graduates of the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts (ALRA).
The company has received funding from Arts Council England to record the full-length, full-cast audio drama at the The Lounge Recording Studio Appleton Street.
As of January 2019 Bamalam was officially registered as a Community Interest Company (CIC), which means it is dedicated to creating new work that reflects the North West of England.
With dozens of short audio dramas under their belts, the award from Arts Council England represents a huge opportunity for James and Lauren to work with the industry’s top professionals as well as reaching an even wider audience. James, 24, said: “It’s fantastic. We’ve been really lucky, the project has been funded by Arts Council England. We’ve been able to get the budget for this and been able to pull a few strings. We’re a local CIC based in Wigan, so to have those names attached to our small company is fantastic. We’re definitely excited!”
He added: “Hopefully it will open up Bamalam to a wider audience. We hope to get more listeners, and hopefully it means we’ll maybe find sponsors, which will allow us to produce the same quality of work but we can start to get bigger profile names on a regular basis.”
Cracking The Feathers began production in Wigan on Monday, January 27, and was due to finish yesterday. It will be available to stream for free via the Bamalam website from March 1 until May 2. Thereafter it will be available to buy online.