Friday, 13 November 2009
TTXGP - HOW I WAS LEFT SPEECHLESS
The DVD of the world's first zero-emissions motorbike race is on sale now. Well, it's not quite zero emissions because the producers hired me to do the commentary so that accounted for quite a few emissions.
This is the story of the TTXGP which was raced around the Mountain Course on the Isle of Man in June. Check it out at www.egrandprix.com
Recording the commentary was, beyond any shadow of a doubt, the hardest piece of broadcasting I have ever done. I'd already done one version in August which went reasonably well, but the producers wanted an updated version. So it was back into the studio to do it again. Unfortunately by this time I was really unwell with a cold and a badly inflamed throat. Production deadlines meant there was no chance of a delay so I doped myself up and got on with it. But that process whereby words travel from the brain to the lips via the voicebox was suffering a significant malfunction. I kept stumbling over the simplest of words. The recording kept having to stop, sections were erased, the pictures would be lined up again, and off I'd go once more. It took two and a half hours to lay down commentary for 40 minutes of video. All the time the vocal chords were getting more and more mangled, while mentally I felt like a dead parrot.
By the time I stumbled out of the studio the entire building had been locked down for the night. As soon as I reached the corridor the intruder alarms began to go off. Next thing a security guard arrives and I'm making my apologies and wishing I'd never got out of bed that morning. The video editor was desperate for my voiceover to be emailed to him that night but with security on my case I had no choice but to leave the building right away.
Next day I woke up with a raging toothache to add to everything else. An emergency appointment at the dentist's ended with the tooth being extracted and an anaesthetic that wore off as soon as the tooth left the cavity, aaaagh, not good. No chance of getting that voiceover away that day. Next day things began to improve and at last I was able to fire the audio file away (useful website for sending large media files by the way: www.yousendit.com)
So I am very pleased that the DVD is out there and I only hope my contribution has not done more harm than good.