Playing Jackanory

youtube screen shots

Just before Christmas I had the very exciting opportunity to attend a 1 day TV presenting course. This is something that I have secretly wanted to try for sometime but not quite believed it  would be possible. However through the magic of Groupon and the fortune of having Pinewood studios practically on my doorstep the chance came up and  it seemed rude not to have a go. Having negotiated the trains and a taxi to get to the studio. I arrived slightly nervously at the world famous studios and wondered if I really had done the right thing.

There were 20 or so participants form a range of backgrounds and reasons. Some people were already involved in acting or presenting, others needed it for business and others had come along as it seemed like fun. Our teacher Tony started the session by us all introducing ourselves. Then after some introduction to the presenting we had to do the same thing to camera! Needless to say watching it our attempts back was not pretty, we had been told  ominously that the camera does things to people  and true enough this was the case. The screen amplified small movements such as fidgeting, talking with the hands ( something I do all the time regardless of if I storytelling or not ) and moving out of camera.

But as the day went on we got better surprisingly quickly and had a lot of fun . We had a go at reading the autocue, imaging we were on a holiday programme and this was my personal favourite and then wrote a piece of our own choice. I chose to present an advert for a competition based on the Golden Ticket reading challenge I ran at the library a number of years ago. The challenge was based on Roald Dahl’s ‘ Charlie and the Chocolate factory

To my surprise I found that I not only enjoyed presenting but  actually really loved it, although I have presented in person while storytelling and presenting in school assemblies the biggest difference in TV presenting to live  is not having an audience feedback to work on. The day course gave me some of the  introductory skills and confidence to get started on my own storytelling videos ( something  I have been playing with for some time) , but I also plan to attend one of the  TV academies longer courses in the near  future to  learn more as I have only touched the tip of the iceberg and can’t wait to get in front of the camera again!

and here is my finished mini showreel, the competition is fictional so sadly the chocolate factory is not real!


Television Training Academy

 Pinewood Studios


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