Event: HI Wireless radio plays
Dates: 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd December 2015
On: Janice Forsyth programme, BBC Radio Scotland
From a progressive and inspirational training initiative to stimulate new writing across Scotland, HI Wireless is an exciting showcase of 11 new radio plays by emerging writers of all ages from the Highlands and Islands, performed by an impressive cast of radio stalwarts, exciting newcomers and high profile Scottish stars.
The first play aired on 9th October in a drama slot on BBC Radio Scotland, the next four plays will air once a week through December during the Janice Forsyth Show:
Wednesday 2nd December 2015
One Last Push by Sylvia Hehir (Strontian)
Starring: Sharon Rooney and Gary Lewis
Synopsis: One Last Push tells the story of 19-year-old Carly, eager to reconcile with her estranged grandfather, Donald, as she has just given birth and has nowhere to stay.
Wednesday 9th December 2015
A Door Closed by Kerrie Noor (Inveraray)
Starring: Libby McArthur and Simon McCay
Synopsis: A Door Closed tells how a series of emotional calls to The Samaritans from a troubled middle aged woman leads to a transformative change in her life and a new friendship with the younger male Samaritan.
Wednesday 16th December 2015
Tears In The Snow by Sophia Heckmann
Starring: Sophia Heckmann, Kenneth McKie
Synopsis: Tears In The Snow is a story of life imitating art imitating life as a novelist meets his leading character, who unwittingly helps him write his new novel as they try and heal each other's grief.
Wednesday 23rd December 2015
The Coffin Road by Iain Hector Ross (Inverness)
Starring: Allison McKenzie and Gerry McLaughlin
Synopsis: The Coffin Road is the story of an engineer and a scientist with conflicting aspirations on a hiking expedition to a remote part of the Highlands.
NEW HIGHLAND WRITERS AIR THEIR WORK TO NATIONAL AUDIENCE
A SERIES of brand new dramas written by budding writers from the Highlands and Islands is set to be broadcast on national radio.
The HI Wireless series, featuring household names such as Daniela Nardini, Gary Lewis and Sharon Rooney, gave would-be scriptwriters their first taste of operating at the sharp end of radio drama; from story idea to studio production.
One of the dramas, Eden by Jan Storie, aired to great acclaim on BBC Radio Scotland in October. Now, nine further single dramas will be broadcast in December and January during the Janice Forsyth Show on BBC Radio Scotland.
All the HI Wireless radio dramas were created under the auspices of ScreenHI, screen and broadcast wing of creative industries network XpoNorth, which promotes and assists creatives working in some of the remotest parts of Scotland.
Four of the dramas will air every Wednesday in the lead up to Christmas.
* One Last Push, by Sylvia Hehir (Strontian), starring Sharon Rooney and Gary Lewis, tells the story of 19-year-old Carly, eager to reconcile with her estranged grandfather, Donald, as she has just given birth and has nowhere to stay. (Wednesday 2nd December)
* A Door Closed, by Kerrie Noor (Inveraray), starring Libby McArthur and Simon McCay, tells how a series of emotional calls to The Samaritans from a troubled middle aged woman leads to a transformative change in her life and a new friendship with the younger male Samaritan. (Wednesday 9th December)
* The Coffin Road, by Iain Hector Ross (Inverness), starring Allison McKenzie and Gerry McLaughlin, is the story of an engineer and a scientist with conflicting aspirations on a hiking expedition to a remote part of the Highlands. (Wednesday 16th December)
* Tears In The Snow by Sophia Heckmann, stars the 20-year-old writer who studied in Inverness as well as newcomer, Kenneth McKie, and is a story of life imitating art imitating life as a novelist meets his leading character, who unwittingly helps him write his new novel as they try and heal each other's grief. (Wednesday 23rd December)
The project was originated by Euan Martin and Dave Smith of Forres-based Right Lines Productions. Amanda Millen and ScreenHI came on board in 2011 and in September 2012 aspiring writers from across the Highlands and Islands responded to an online call on the ScreenHI website to take part.
The plan was initially to record dramas written by 11 writers and put them online, but Millen, a former BBC drama producer, who heads up ScreenHI, took the scheme to another level.
She explained: “We decided to record all the dramas properly and the BBC offered access to their studios in Glasgow.
“We brought in well-known writers, Colin Macdonald and Chris Dolan, to mentor our scriptwriters, while Alan de Pellette, who has a strong track record with developing hit shows such Off The Ball, Chewin’ The Fat and Still Game was appointed director.
“I produced them and support came from ScreenHI via Highlands & Islands Enterprise and the European Regional Development Fund, with additional funds from Creative Scotland.
“It’s taken a while but we got eleven really well-produced radio dramas featuring household names.
“One of the dramas, Border Control by Dave Smith, from Tain, was broadcast online at the time of the Referendum because it was time-sensitive, which left us with ten radio dramas that have now been picked up by BBC Radio Scotland.”
According to director, Alan de Pellette, directing the HI Wireless dramas was a revelation.
He said: “I've spent many years working with new writers and directing their work and it’s testament to the quality of the writing that we managed to attract high quality cast to each project, including some famous Scottish names.
“It’s great to be part of a project like this that encourages new writers and invests in the process to make them as good as they can be, giving them a top class professional piece of work at the end of it that they can hopefully use to enhance their career.”
Plockton-based Jan Storie, whose comedy drama, Eden, aired in October, said: “Eden represents a wonderful calling card for me.
“It presented a great opportunity for someone like me with no track record. I now have another radio comedy drama in development and I’m also working on a six-part series set in the Highlands. This would never have happened without HI Wireless and ScreenHI.”
For more information, see http://screenhi.co.uk/blogs/80/high-drama-from-hi-wireless
Notes to Editors:
XpoNorth Screen and Broadcast
The screen and broadcasting wing of the XpoNorth creative industries network is called ScreenHI and is headed up by Amanda Millen, who is also director of XpoNorth. ScreenHI is the Screen and Broadcast Industry Network for the Highlands and Islands and has been operating for five years. It offers experiences, job opportunities and industry networking to screen and broadcast businesses in the Highlands & Islands.
For more information or images contact:
Jan Patience on firstname.lastname@example.org
Amanda Millen on email@example.com
07887 605 062