Project Description

A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO DEATH – PODCAST

An anthology of short-form dramas exploring the theme of death, the extraordinary subject that literally affects us all. Each drama is accompanied by a discussion episode – where the writers reflect on the themes of their plays with end of life specialists including end of life doulas, therapists and morticians.

This podcast series is produced by She Wants A Dog and features five new audio dramas exploring different aspects of death. I designed the sound for the dramas and the series, including orignal theme music. The sound design presented a number of challenges from recreating the sounds of an autopsy to a haunting presence of a lost loved one. There’s some wonderful writing and performances in this series and each drama is accompanied by frank and fascinating conversations in the discussion episodes.

Episode 1: AliceWritten by Amanda Whittington and performed by Amelia Bullmore

As she passes suddenly and unexpectedly out of life, Laura peacefully observes events as they unfold. She finds herself in the capable care of Alice, a mortuary technician whose working world is unlike anything Laura has seen before.

Episode 2: Tears for ££sWritten by Mufaro Makubika and performed by Michael Balogun

Grieving for his late wife but wanting to honour her requested funeral arrangements, Nyasha arrives at a café for a meeting. Resistant to the details of the transaction with the woman he has come to meet, he struggles with his feelings until they find an unexpected moment of connection.

Episode 3: Fixing Eileen – Written by Leah Chillery and performed by Danielle Henry

Eileen’s life has been a catalogue of fads, phases and obsessions on a quest to ‘fix herself’. It’s been a rollercoaster ride that’s sometimes exhilarating but mostly exhausting. In spite of her determination to keep going, the voices in Eileen’s head just won’t let up. On a trip to tend her Mum’s grave, she decides to stop fighting them and start listening.

Episode 4: The Tower – Written by Annie Siddons and performed by Lisa Hammond with Bernadette Russell and James Burton

Academic and scientist Shonagh has been asked by a colleague at the lab to record a podcast to encourage women to get into STEM. At home in her flat at the end of a sleepless night she reluctantly presses record. As she does her best to stick to the brief, a series of strange events disrupt the process and threaten to overwhelm her.

Episode 5: Breathe In Breathe Out – Written by Rochi Rampal and performed by Balvinder Sopal

Unable to reconcile the contradictions and intensities, two post-death voices from within offer different reflections on the process of dying. Still wedded to a belief in meditation and affirmations Casey wants to hold on to the positive and let go of the struggle. Alethea, on the other hand, wants to debunk the myths and hold on to the reality.

This podcast was released on 22 November 2021. It is available from your usual podcast distributors such as Spotify, Appple Podcasts, Google Podcasts etc. Funded by Arts Council England and supported by Nottingham Playhouse.

A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO DEATH – PODCAST

An anthology of short-form dramas exploring the theme of death, the extraordinary subject that literally affects us all. Each drama is accompanied by a discussion episode – where the writers reflect on the themes of their plays with end of life specialists including end of life doulas, therapists and morticians.

This podcast series is produced by She Wants A Dog and features five new audio dramas exploring different aspects of death. I designed the sound for the dramas and the series, including orignal theme music. The sound design presented a number of challenges from recreating the sounds of an autopsy to a haunting presence of a lost loved one. There’s some wonderful writing and performances in this series and each drama is accompanied by frank and fascinating conversations in the discussion episodes.

Episode 1: AliceWritten by Amanda Whittington and performed by Amelia Bullmore

As she passes suddenly and unexpectedly out of life, Laura peacefully observes events as they unfold. She finds herself in the capable care of Alice, a mortuary technician whose working world is unlike anything Laura has seen before.

Episode 2: Tears for ££sWritten by Mufaro Makubika and performed by Michael Balogun

Grieving for his late wife but wanting to honour her requested funeral arrangements, Nyasha arrives at a café for a meeting. Resistant to the details of the transaction with the woman he has come to meet, he struggles with his feelings until they find an unexpected moment of connection.

Episode 3: Fixing Eileen – Written by Leah Chillery and performed by Danielle Henry

Eileen’s life has been a catalogue of fads, phases and obsessions on a quest to ‘fix herself’. It’s been a rollercoaster ride that’s sometimes exhilarating but mostly exhausting. In spite of her determination to keep going, the voices in Eileen’s head just won’t let up. On a trip to tend her Mum’s grave, she decides to stop fighting them and start listening.

Episode 4: The Tower – Written by Annie Siddons and performed by Lisa Hammond with Bernadette Russell and James Burton

Academic and scientist Shonagh has been asked by a colleague at the lab to record a podcast to encourage women to get into STEM. At home in her flat at the end of a sleepless night she reluctantly presses record. As she does her best to stick to the brief, a series of strange events disrupt the process and threaten to overwhelm her.

Episode 5: Breathe In Breathe Out – Written by Rochi Rampal and performed by Balvinder Sopal

Unable to reconcile the contradictions and intensities, two post-death voices from within offer different reflections on the process of dying. Still wedded to a belief in meditation and affirmations Casey wants to hold on to the positive and let go of the struggle. Alethea, on the other hand, wants to debunk the myths and hold on to the reality.

This podcast was released on 22 November 2021. It is available from your usual podcast distributors such as Spotify, Appple Podcasts, Google Podcasts etc. Funded by Arts Council England and supported by Nottingham Playhouse.

Produced by She Wants a Dog (Kate Chapman and Pippa Frith)

Assistant Producer Daljinder Johal

Dramas directed by Kate Chapman

Sound design by Iain Armstrong

Sound editing by Fraser Youngson

Partner: Nottingham Playhouse

Supported by Arts Council England

 

Writer & Performer: Francesca Millican-Slater

Sound Design: Iain Armstrong

Podcast Consultant / Hosting: Mark Steadman, Podiant

Producer: Pippa Frith

Photography: Graeme Braidwood