As you may have seen on my social media accounts, I’ve been working really hard to keep a secret which I can now tell!
A few months ago I was invited to come on board on an audio drama by Big Finish. I have wanted to work with Big Finish for a while as I’ve listened to and enjoyed a few of their Doctor Who audio dramas. This was on the second Pathfinder Legends series instead.
I’m not at all denying being a big geek about certain things and although I have played a few RPGs before, I was not familiar with Pathfinder at all. Being a geek though, I did recognise how important my research would be. So I made some enquiries and made sure I knew as much as I could about who I was playing.
I would be playing Velriana Hypaxes, described to me as having a “ruthless streak” (how on earth could I resist!?!?) who can be seen on the front cover of The Half-Dead City (above), the first episode of the second series, Mummy’s Mask. I also played a number of other characters including a half-orc called Naghut, who I was asked to reprise in the second episode Empty Graves.
I had such a fun time recording the two episodes with alongside a lovely producer/director, wonderful cast and brilliantly patient sound team. I haven’t heard much of the final plays so I’m really excited to hear the finished product and hope I have done the characters justice!
The Half-Dead City, in which I play Velriana Hypaxes and Naghut is released on CD and download in September from Big Finish in the UK or Paizo in the USA
Empty Graves, in which I play Naghut is released on CD and download in October from Big Finish in the UK or Paizo in the USA
Also, the entire Pathfinder Legends – Mummy’s Mask series can be subscribed to via Big Finish in the UK or Paizo in the USA so you are sent every episode as soon as it is released!
What a week!!!! Crazy crazy but fun fun!
This week I’ve been working on R&D with KimBo Theatre on “Soundtrack”, a look at how sound and music effects our day-to-day life. It was a big topic to cover and as a violinist and radio play performer and enthusiast, it was a wonderfully challenging week. We developed quite a few ideas around sound and memory, the sounds of a person’s average day, creating audio soundscapes, how music effects a task (eg. making a cup of tea). We also had input on Friday morning from the wonderful Tim Gebbels who as a visually impaired actor, gave us his perspective on our work. It was great meeting Tim and his guide dog Arthur.
On Saturday evening, we shared a selection of the work we’d worked on at a showing at the Hackney Showroom. It’ll be interesting to look at all the feedback and see where our director Bryony wants to take the project next.
On Monday evening after many evenings of devising and rehearsing the puppetry group I’m part of called Little Devils showed our devised piece entitled “A Light Journey” was shown the Little Angel Theatre. Here’s some production photos:
The Ship of fools at sea
Wisewoman & man arguing
Boss Minion threatening the other Minions
All three minions looking at the Light in a box
Finally Thursday night saw the start of a new project for me, Opera in the East’s development of a puppeteered perfromance of Bella Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle. This will be performed at The Queen Elisabeth Olympic Park in Stratford as part of The Arcola‘s Grimeborn season and is directed by Oliver James Hymans who also directed “A Light Journey” at the Little Angel. It’ll be great to work with Oliver once again!
So I’ve recently launched my own theatre company: Theatre Mensch! The reason for creating the company is to have a brand under which to produce some theatre making. Our first project is Mary Mary which is in progress and we also have a few other bits in development as well. Keep up to date on Theatre Mensch stuff over on the website.
Additionally, a friend of mine took a trip recently to The Clifton Suspension Bridge Visitor’s Centre and took some footage of the game I leant my voice to last year:
Finally, as you might see in the “Ashleigh will be appearing in…” section, I’m performing in a devised puppetry show called “A Light Journey” devised by Little Devils for a special showcase at The Little Angel Theatre. If you’d like to come along, please message me for tickets.
Lots of other exciting things happening that I can’t talk about just yet, but keep your eyes open for more updates!
So it looks like I can finally announce my involvement in one of the projects I’ve been under a non disclosure agreement about: Guitar Hero Live!
In March, I spent three days working at Shepperton Studios recording voices for featured audience members in several different levels, including the level featured in the above trailer. Here’s a cheeky photo I took of the studios on the day:
The team had recorded the visuals previously but needed voice artists to do some ADR (Automated Dialogue Replacement) on featured audience members at the front of the stage, and to provide general whoops or boos for when the player was doing well or badly.
The recording was done on a sound stage and the recording felt very much like my experience of festivals: lots of fun, very tiring and great times making new friends.
As a fan of the series myself (I own the “Warriors of Rock” edition for the PS3) it was nice to be one of over four hundred actors who made Guitar Hero Live possible. If you play the game and think you hear me, please get in touch. I’d love to see what made it into the final game.
Guitar Hero Live is released in the autumn. More details on Guitar Hero Live can be found here.
Just a quick update to say that I haven’t posted an update on my blog for a while. That isn’t because I’ve not had news, it’s because I can’t talk about the fantastic news I have!
In March I worked on a really great, very high profile voice job which took me to Shepperton Studios for three days.
And on Thursday, I’m recording a radio play I’ve have been cast in. It looks like it will prove to be ENORMOUS fun.
Once these have been announced and non-disclosure agreements have expired I will be sure to announce my involvement in these wonderful projects by shouting it from the rooftops. In the meantime, you’ll just have to keep guessing because I’m not going to tell you.
As some may have seen from my twitter/facebook etc, last week I recorded a voice reel with the lovely people at Voiceover Soho. So here is my commercial and documentary voice reels!
“Jacques or Obedience” (one half of the “Ionesco Double Bill”) opens tonight at the Network Theatre and runs until Saturday. Above is a picture taken from our dress rehearsal on Monday and my crow-like Grandmother Jacques is the second from left. Tickets are selling fast (a few days are almost sold out already) so book tickets here.
In the meantime, a post that I wrote entitled “Dealanach: Who Are Women?” for the Boireannach Theatre website is getting some very nice feedback on twitter:
A Younger Theatre’s review of Dealanach while not exactly glowing, did recommend my blog post in their review of the show. Although I loved the work we did with Dealanach, I realise that the form of the piece meant it was never going to be to everyone’s tastes. All art-forms can, in the end, be a matter of personal taste and preference.
“Dealanach” rehearsals have been hotting up and you can read some of my thoughts about this over on my post entitled “Who Are Women” on the Boireannach Website. “Dealanach” is being performed as part of Boireannach Theatre’s “Into The Mire” season as part of the Vault festival on Thursday 12th at 6.15pm and Saturday 14th at 1.45pm. Book tickets here.
Tickets for “Jacques or Obedience”, part of the Network Theatre “Ionesco Double Bill” are also now on sale. If you want to see this crazy masked performance, with me playing Grandmother Jacques, book tickets here.
And to whet your appetites here’s an in-the-making shot of the Grandmother Jacque’s mask:
I’m thrilled to announce I will be part of the Dealanach ensemble for Boireannach Theatre’s second season “Into The Mire” at Vault Festival on 12th and 14th February. Dealanach is a devised ensemble piece about the female form and I’m so excited to work with a wonderful group of women, some of whom I’ve worked with before and some of whom I’m looking forward to working with for the first time! I really can’t wait to get into the rehearsal room and have already been looking at some pretty amazing women as part of my research Learn more about the piece on the Boireannach website or book tickets via the Vault Festival website.
Look forward to seeing you all there!
After showcase finished and my dissertation was submitted I decided to go on holiday. I did debate the stupidity of spending money on a holiday after completing an expensive MA course, but one of the reasons I decided to do the course in the first place was because I decided to do more of what I wanted to do and not let money dictate my life so much. Plus I did feel like I wanted to celebrate the end of my life as an acting student and the start of my life as a professional actor.
Since being back, I’ve had a few interesting auditions: a theatre company producing new writing in a fringe theatres above pubs, a TV advert for a highstreet bank and today, a Theatre In Education Pantomime that will tour schools around London and the South East.
Before I went away, I decided to see what I could do day-to-day within the Theatre industry that might fit around going to auditions and developing my own work. I applied and was accepted for a job ushering at the Unicorn Theatre. If you aren’t familiar with it, the Unicorn Theatre produces and hosts theatre for and/or about young people and has had a purpose built home in London Bridge since 2005. I am thrilled to be working for such a wonderful theatre company as I was lucky enough as a young child to be taken by my School to the theatre company’s adaptation of Meg, Mog and Owl. I have some vivid memories of this production and am in no doubt that this, along with other early experiences of theatre, have had an influence in my choice of career going forward. More recently I went to see Monkey Bars; the verbatim piece written by Chris Goode, at the Unicorn Theatre. So far working at the Unicorn Theatre has given me some great opportunities to experience theatre aimed at young people while working.
I’ve also been volunteering at The Lab Collective doing everything from set painting, to show theme research, to researching and filling out funding applications. It’s been great working with an upcoming theatre company, supporting some really interesting new talent and getting an opportunity to learn about their theatre production process.
So all in all – exciting times! Here’s to my career as an Actor and Theatre Maker.