Finally Featured. Or Fully Toasted.

Georgia was fantastic and went and got an interview with Nick from Crompton Coffee but unfortunately when she came back with the zoom she’d made the easy mistake not to press the record button twice and didn’t get any audio at all. So unfortunately she had to go back 2 days later and re-do the interview which set us back a couple of days. But in the scheme of things it wasn’t too bad.

I’d finished the vox-pops but I decided to use my new found skills in FMOD and make a mix of people saying the word toast. I was glad for this because I hadn’t thought about doing it before.

Georgia managed to get another interview with Nick which still turned out well but apparently not as good as the original interview was.

We met up and stayed in the edit suites for ages working on our piece.

I was slightly disappointed as it didn’t turn out to be as analytical and indepth as I had orginally hoped. I loved parts of it and it was great fun to do. I really liked the toaster popping noises and the biting toast sound effects. We managed to cut it all together quite well and overall, I am happy with the final product. Even though, it wasn’t what I originally imagined it to be I thoroughly enjoyed making it.

Feature working

We decided for the feature that we would do 2 interviews. One with the owner of the Crompton Coffee and another interview with the Stand-up Cafe owner. Another part of our piece was to include vox-pops. The voxpops were going to be the creative fun part. We hoped we’d get people on the street talking about toast and be able to cut it all in together and make it fun and amusing.

We went on the streets in the CBD and got plenty of vox-pops. I decided to keep walking and try and organise an interview with the owner of the stand up cafe. I left Linh and Georgia near RMIT and went and got some more vox-pops. I started talking to the guy at the stand-up cafe and we decided to do the interview on the spot. He was really nice and easy to talk to so considering I had no questions prepared he said I could come back if I wanted to ask him anything else. So I did the interview on the fly, just asking whatever came to mind. I was quite happy with the interview as a whole and didn’t need to go back.

Linh and Georgia said they’d organise the interview with Crompton Coffee while I cut together my interview with David from the Stand-up cafe and worked on the compilation of vox-pops.

I worked really hard on the vox-pops getting them to sound funny and amusing. Since we had so many of them. After cutting out us asking all the questions we still had about 45 minutes worth of vox-pops. It took me a while but I made a track of vox-pops that I was really happy with. It was just over 1 minute in total which I figured was perfect as it captured the fun of the vox-pops but not take up too much time in the feature.

Feature Preparation

Before we went live on Room With a View we did a good brainstorm about what we could do for our feature.

We sat around for ages trying to come up with a good idea, and ended up just shooting out random things we’d heard about to each other.

The Toast idea came from me mentioning the cereal cafe that was open for a limited period of time over summer then Georgia brought up the toast cafe. From here we started talking about toast and all loved the idea of doing a quirky, fun piece.

We considered what role bread played in society and the dependance we have on it as a basic food source. And why would people be happy to pay good money for something that you can make so quickly and easily and cheaply at home? This brought us back to the niche cafe culture that melbourne has and people are willing to pay for. Cafes now seem to have a catch to draw people in, eg. toast, cereal, standing cafe, cat cafes. And this cafe, Crompton Coffee, has toast.

The idea of TOAST just couldn’t escape our minds. And from here, the idea of toast was born.

We worked out the structure of the piece and where we wanted to go with it. Obviously we wanted the fun and quirky piece but we had to gain something out of it. The idea of multiculturalism and the fact that every culture has it’s own bread came up and we figured that might be a good direction to take the feature in.

Our First Show

The 11th of May came around pretty quickly from when we originally set the date.

We had some messing around in the morning to try and print off the run sheets and script. Georgia called me whilst I was on the tram to the studios and asked me to do it so I jumped off at Parliament and started looking around the city for an Officeworks then Linh called and said she’d do it as she lives next to an Officeworks so I went back and caught another tram in. It seemed to take a while but we all got there with plenty of time.

We ran over the show again and made sure we all knew what time our interviewees were coming.

My main worry about the whole thing was the transitions between the show that was on air before us and our show and then going from our show to the one after us. The people doing the show before us were really nice and came out and asked us what theme they wanted us to play so we could jump in during that. I took a mental note to do that when we were getting towards the end of our show so we could do a similar transition with the next show.

Our first interviewee – Mark Gregory from Laneway Learning – showed up before we went into the studio which was good so we could do a quick run down with him before we went and set up. The interview with him went pretty well I thought, he was easy to talk to and it all flowed pretty well. Getting toward the end of the interview I was trying to wave at Georgia to hint that we should wrap it up soon but she was facing away from me and so focussed on the interview that she couldn’t see me so luckily she only asked a few more questions before finishing up.

The main thing I would have changed from that interview was the last question asking if there was anything else he wanted to say. I’m just not a fan of that interview style and I feel like by the end of that interview it was pretty clear that everything that we wanted to get out of the interview had been said.

The second interview was supposed to be Elliot Costello from YGAP but he turned up later than we were expecting so we had to bump the pre-recorded interview with Ian Nisbet and Sam Marzden about Spamalot forward. Whilst we were doing the intro for that interview Elliot walked in, which actually worked out well because it meant we could have a chat to him and do a run down of the studio without feeling rushed.

The interview with Elliot went pretty well, I think Georgia and Linh found it much more difficult because he very clearly had one thing on his mind that he wanted to get across about the 5 cent campaign which was great, however, that wasn’t all that we wanted to focus on.

I made a mistake with the sponsorship system which I was half expecting. It was a bit of a shock when we got into the studio and found that there were no sponsorship announcements scheduled for our show. Then when I went to play a promo at one point it didn’t play for me and I quickly had to switch to a song. I think it just had me spooked but it didn’t sound as bad as I thought it did.

The transition out of the studio for the next show was also a bit iffy. Georgia went out toward the end of our show and asked them how they wanted us to end and what promo we should play to give them time to get into the studio and they were a lot more relaxed about it then we were. They told us what promo and but when I went to play it it was only 24 seconds long and I had nothing else to cue up after that so I think it was a bit of a messy transition but it worked out in the end. I think they were expecting us to play a song as well, which we didn’t understand so I might have just been a communication problem. At least we can be even more aware of it next time!

Demo Practise

Georgia, Linh and I reserved some time in the studio to record a demo. This was great as we needed some practise time with the panel and just to get used to being in the studio.

It was hard because we didn’t have all the content that we were going to have for our proper show so Linh and Georgia spent a bit too much time just having to talk pointlessly between themselves, which obviously wasn’t what was going to happen during our show.

I was panelling and my main struggle was using the system that has all the promos and sponsorship announcements. I’ve used a panel before when I was presenting in Canberra but we didn’t have a system with sponsorships etc. so as much as I generally felt comfortable with the panel, I found using that different. I made a couple of mistakes with it but by the end I felt pretty confident that I would be fine using it for our show on the 11th.

The music was all the same and we had brought it in on a USB, so I was able to play it straight off that. That was strange having all of it on the USB because it means using the computer and it’s more difficult to do a good transition between 2 songs if you are playing one after the other.

I also used audition to record the demo and all of that went smoothly. It made it easy to then put that onto my USB and then upload it onto ROAR.

Getting Ready To Go Live To Air

Linh, Georgia and I started going full steam ahead with our show.

We had a few big brainstorming sessions and came up with A LOT of ideas. We ended up scrapping quite a few of them just because they seemed a bit far fetched and not very suitable for 3RRR. Georgia sent the list to Elizabeth and she came back with some good feedback.

In the end we decided on these interview topics:

1. Laneway Learning – an initiative in Melbourne doing creative night classes for low costs, things from knitting to wine tasting to burlesque.

2. Spamalot – a play being held from the 12th of June at the MLOC theatres that retells the story of King Arthur but with weird twists such as killer bunnies and show girls.

3. YGAP – a non-for-profit organisation that aims to reduce social problems by developing various fundraising campaigns, like the 5cent campaign that is starting up soon.

(Click on the links above if you want to find out more about these topics!)

I personally came up with the Spamalot idea as a friend of mine is performing in it. I helped set up the interview with the director and then Linh met them at rehearsals one night and did the interview there. It was good to do it in their own setting and Linh got to learn a lot more about the play – they actually got her up on stage at one point!

Having a pre-recorded interview let us feel a bit more comfortable for the show as we knew we could just play the interview and have some time to reconvene and relax whilst on air.

We also organised the Laneway learning and YGAP interviews for the day and everything was set to go.