17 year old Sebastian Brown from Hungerford has made the most of 2020 by creating an impressive Doctor Who audio fan series.
Sebastian explains here how they improvised around lockdown restrictions to make it happen:
We had the idea to do a Doctor Who Series around the beginning of the first lockdown. It was originally intended to be filmed as at the time we didn’t expect COVID-19 to be an issue for such a long time. We discussed the practicalities of building a set including the TARDIS interior and various spaceships. My Dad was up for it but pointed out the likely cost (£1000) and time, reckoning it would take two hard weeks to build, one week to film and one week to take down. He thought the Kennet centre might let us do it there and it would be a spectacle – an attraction perhaps…
We spoke to a set maker who has worked on some impressive spaceships for films, and gave us many tips. At this point we were already a few weeks into lockdown and there was no sign of it ending. I then began to pursue alternative ways of making it and came across the Big Finish production company who have been licensed to make “Doctor Who” audio dramas since 1996. I then knew that audio would be the best way to make this series as all we needed was a microphone and laptop. Due to this switch I rewrote all but one episode, with Episode 1 being the only one of the original drafts and the original Episode 3 was moved to a possible series 2 in order to allow for writer, Matthew Morecroft, to write a 2-part story.
The next stage was to look at casting. I have worked in various productions with the Newbury Youth Theatre so I knew a lot of actors and I already had a good idea of what I wanted from the characters. I was lucky enough that my first choices for the parts of the Doctor, Jenny and Don all agreed to do i7
We then moved onto the recording stage, which took place in Newbury, no cast member ever being in the room together due to COVID. I met each actor in turn and read their cue lines in the way I imagined the opposite actor doing it, before recording their solo lines. Later I stitched all these separate tracks together whilst adding footsteps, sound effects and surround sound in order to allow the listener to imagine the world that the characters inhabited.
The series will air every Saturday at 17:15 on the Brown Productions YouTube Channel until Boxing Day 2020. The episodes can be listened to again at any time.