Brand new audio drama Theatre of the Damned is now available to buy and download from new platform Audioteria, intended to be a purchase platform primarily for independent drama and enhanced audiobooks and I’m thrilled it’s now out in the world.
Theatre of the Damned is a B7 Media co-production with indie theatre company Metal Rabbit. It’s planned as a series, but we wanted to make sure it worked as a standalone story in its own right as well as serving as a proof of concept.
Set in the grim and gaudy Paris of the 1920s, Theatre of the Damned draws inspiration from the real-life Theatre du Grand Guignol. It explores the blood-curdling depths to which struggling immigrant theatre producer, Camille Choisy (Amir El-Masry), penniless Parisian playwright, Andre De Lorde (Sam Crane) and aspiring actress, Paula Maxa (Kelly Burke), will stoop in order to satiate their audience’s blood-thirsty appetite and gain Faustian profits.
I always knew this was going to be a fun one. During the first Covid lockdown, we ran a series of online table reads; partly for fun and to keep us and the actors we knew busy, but also to try out some scripts we’d had on the shelf for a while as well as hear potential new scripts like Theatre of the Damned.
Unusually for an audio drama, and as a result of having a theatre company as our partner, we had the luxury of a rehearsal day, which was a great opportunity for the cast to meet and work with each other before heading into the studio.
Mics! Script! …Acton!
Theatre of the Damned was recorded over two days with the lovely people at The SoundHouse in Acton, where we had a lot of grisly fun. The second day held a surprise: our Production Assistant casually mentioned that there was a young bird caged under the wastepaper basket in the corner of the studio. One of our actors with a gift for animal whispering had rescued it outside and decided to look after it between his scenes. Given the themes of the script, it fortunately survived till lunchtime, when it was released outside to loiter by the picnic tables looking for crumbs.
So, into the studio where we staged fights, “bad” acting, eating fingers, executions, vomiting and screaming. Lots of screaming. (None of it related to discovering a bird under the wastepaper basket.) I even provided some blood-curdling screaming of my own.
Theatre of the Damned is available now and contains scenes of gore, horror and strong language – not for one while eating lunch!
Head to Audioteria to buy and download. The site is paired with its own app where you can keep all your Audioteria content – or you can play on whatever device you prefer.