Hello folks! Hope you’re all keeping well, despite the continuing rise in Covid infections. People seem to be falling like flies…. thankfully I haven’t succumbed, I am as fully vaccinated and boosted as I can be, and I continue to mask and avoid crowds. Stay safe m’dears!
Good news, the new Series I shot in Liverpool last year is released next week.
Compulsion premieres on Channel 5 on Tuesday, April 12th at 9 p.m.
Sarah Deane (Moving On, Clink) wrote the four-part thriller, which is directed by Noreen Kershaw (Call the Midwife, Pitching In, Our Girl). The series, which was filmed in Liverpool last year, will be stripped across the week, Tuesday-Friday.
Jenny, a paramedic who develops a gambling addiction while attempting to cope with PTSD after a catastrophic train collision, is played by Leanne Best (Young Wallander, Cold Feet). Sasha, a good Samaritan who provides Jenny a way out, is played by Anna Chancellor (Pennyworth, The Watch), while loan shark Connie Bertram is played by the legendary Hayley Mills. I play Connie’s sidekick, Jimmy – you’ll catch me in episodes 2 and 4. Also in the cast Krissi Bohn plays Ali, Ben Tavassoli plays Raj, and Danny Ashok plays Chris.
Colin McKeown, Executive Producer, LA Productionsadded: “We strive with all of our dramas to get the best cast, the best crew and the best script. With ‘Compulsion’ we believe we have achieved that.”
So, set your TV planners and make sure to tune in – and let me know what you think!
We’re almost finished January, and about to blast into February with a LIVE show!
That’s real LIVE people performing in front of a real LIVE audience!!!!
But Fear Not! There’s a LIVE STREAMING option those who aren’t yet ready to mingle.
Rachel’s comedy has been heard on BBC Radio 4 and BBC Radio Scotland and performed by impressionists including Rory Bremner, Alistair McGowan and Christina Bianco. Rachel also performs improvised comedy shows nationwide and is the winner of The Phoenix Remix Act Of The Year 2019.
Rachel has put together a group of fun professional performers for her Sketch Up Crew, and at her cry of “SKETCH UP ASSEMBLE!” we all fall into place. We’ve been recording and performing Rach’s sketches for a few years now (except the last two obvs) and its brilliant fun – mainly because they’re so well written and full of wonderful characters we’d never get asked to play otherwise!
On stage for this performance, besides our Wonder Woman Rachel, we have Melanie Crawley, Gerard Fletcher, and myself.
A fabulous voiceover artist, having narrated over 40 audiobooks including An Unknown Woman by Jane Davis and The River Through Rome by Nicholas Nicastro. She is Joy in The Age of Love, the podcast based on artist Pete McKee’s characters, and starred in the UK tour of Tannie & Tannie.
One of the best voiceover actors in the business. My favourite facts are that he presents Screwfix’s YouTube channel and he’s the on-hold voice of DPD, The National Trust and Halfords!
TV includes Sherwood, Get Even (BBC/Netflix – 5 EPs), Emmerdale, Happy Valley” and Girlfriends, where he and I first worked together, sharing a scene with Zoë Wanamaker and Miranda Richardson.
He has performed in radio dramas for BBC Radio 3, Radio 4 and Radio 4 Extra. His voice can be heard in ads on TV and most independent commercial radio stations worldwide and he’s narrated audio books and documentaries for BBC, ITV, Channel 5 Paramount and History Channel.
Sketch Up at Leicester Comedy Festival is being live-streamed by Next Up on Friday 4th February at 8pm. It should also be available to watch on demand afterwards. To watch, you’ll need a Next Up account, which is either £7 a month with no long-term commitment or £24 for a whole year’s subscription. This gives you access to a bajillion live comedy shows from the UK’s most famous comedians – and us too!
As the artist, we take 50% of the revenue generated by people watching our show. Anyone who signs up for Sketch Up can watch Rachel’s dark comedy Sex, Lies & Improvisation on Friday 18th February at 9pm for no extra cost! Here’s the Link to sign-up!
IN OTHER NEWS….
I loved my couple of Corrie episodes, Jan 12 & 14, what a treat to work on those famous cobbles. Here’s a clip of my scenes – NOTE ***SPOILER ALERT***
Here’s hoping Corrie ask Gordon back for more! Maybe send them a tweet if you want to see him return?
I’ve walked a lot throughout January – as part of the RUN THE MONTH Fundraiser for PROSTATE CANCER UK.
Thank youRadio Times for printing Cast Lists for shows!
Great to see my name in the RT again for next week’s episodes of Coronation St, playing Gordon, Wednesday and Friday, 12th and 14th of January.
It was lovely to be on the cobbles again, my 4th time, and to work with the legend that is Barbara Knox, the wonderful Julia Goulding and Sally-Ann Matthews– and the fab crew of course! Amazing lovely place to work.
Otherwise, just set your timers and alarms and tune in next Wednesday and Friday! Jan 12 and 14th.
I hope the New Year is treating you all well. I started the Prostate Cancer UK “RUN THE MONTH” Challenge to cover a marathon distance over the month of January.
All is going well so far, I’ve done just over 10 miles of brisk walking as of today, Jan 4th, and raised £215 so far.
If you’d like to chip in a few quid, it would be much appreciated, the Fundraiser Page is here. I’m doing it for a mate who was recently diagnosed.
Keep walking, stay safe – and watch Corrie next week!
So, here we are, it’s almost New Year’s Eve as I write this on Thursday evening.
It’s been another odd year hasn’t it? Lockdowns, loss of people, loss of work.
New Year is always a time for reflection time for me anyway, my Dad died Dec 31, 2010, and I always feel his loss. This year it feels even more reflective.
So it’s back to New Year traditions to say farewell to the old and welcome the new. I’ve baked lots of tarts, jam and lemon curd. My Gran always cooked them for Christmas and New Year, and as a youngster I helped, cutting out the tarts, scooping the jam fillings. And making a jam turnover with the remaining pastry.
Tomorrow will be an evening at home with my Mum, a beer or two, nibbles…. some Pork Pie, Scotch Egg, Sausage Rolls, vol-au-vents… And this evening I’ve made Egg Nog for the first time, it’s now chilling ready to add to traditions tomorrow. I admit, my Brandy pouring hand may have been over zealous.
At midnight I’ll sing Auld Lang Syne, I’ll go out and come in again to First Foot, I’ll phone and message friends near and far, then to bed and 2022.
I’m hoping work continues next year as it ended in 2021. I ended up quite busy over the last couple of months. An episode of Doctors for BBC1, two episodes of an upcoming series, Compulsion, for Channel 5. And most recently I shot two episodes of Coronation St, airing mid-January on ITV.
To end the year tomorrow, you can hear me doing some radio. As I’ve mentioned before, I co-host the monthly Comedy Show on Write Radio on Sheffield Live. Tomorrow’s show is a year-end special, a murder mystery featuring all the hosts of Write Radio, put together by our amazing producer Andrew Tildesley. It’s fun, so listen in, either live, or catch up on the link later. Write Radio airs Friday afternoons, 1-3pm.
An upcoming event to plug to you! I’m on stage this Friday evening (Oct 22nd/2021) in two pieces of new writing for Next Left.
Next Left is a political theatre project based in Sheffield, assembling immediate responses to current events.
The show: TEST•TRACK•TRACE – Brave New World? is on Friday 22nd October 2021 at Theatre Deli in Sheffield. You can get your tickets here.
The evening features new work from writers Bryony Lavery, Ella Hardy, Melanie Hopkins, Paul Kenny, Rachel E. Thorn, Ray Castleton, and John Hunter.
Performed by Ali Mylon, Beatrice Comins, Claire Dean, Connor Gale, Maria Sims, Eleanor May Blackburn, Ashleigh Cordery, Lisa Armytage, Ray Castleton, Ross Cawton, Kate Rutter, Sean Corey, Melanie Crawley, and myself.
Directed by Olwen May, Kate Rutter, James Stone and Neil Sissons.
I’m in – “Back to the New Normal‘ – Written by Rachel E Thorn, performed by Rowe David McClelland, Ali Mylon and Melanie Crawley, directed by James Stone.
And – “Variety Shitshow” – Written by Ella Hardy, performed by Eleanor May Blackburn, Sean Corey and Rowe David McClelland, directed by Hassun El-Zafar.
And coming up….
I’m going to be on your telly box!
Not once, not twice, but THRICE!!! Just got a smasher of a new gig today….
Details to come soon.
“Each film is its own dramatic poem, performed by one talented actor down the camera lens. RDTL has a working-class flavour – poetry for anybody to enjoy. (I say ‘anybody’, but probably not kids – you’ve been warned…)
There are just two rules for a Rhyme Down the Lens production: It must rhyme, and it must be delivered (you guessed it), down the lens. This last point puts the viewer right in the middle of the action, being spoken to directly by the film’s lead. Whether they’re filling the shoes of a passenger on a bus, or taking the role of an online sex worker, the viewer is very much playing a character themselves. Tearing down the fourth wall brick by brick.
I hope Rhyme Down the Lens proves that anybody can follow (and enjoy) a poem. The amount of times you hear people say ‘I just don’t get poetry’… I’m not going to lie, a little part of me dies every time. If RDTL can change one person’s mind on this, I may have just written/directed something worthwhile…”
So, I hope you enjoy my piece, and the whole series, it’s great to be part of something that’s a very different sort of role for me.
Take a look at this LINK TO ALL THREE EPISODES
I’m delighted to have worked on two TV projects over the last month – a daytime soap (a Christmas week episode), and 2 episodes of a new series to be released next year.
More on those next time.
Right then, that’s all for now. Remember, Covid is not over, despite our government moving on, so please stay safe.
Just a quick update… Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been working with Flippin’Mental Theatre to provide the final video element to an online Drama Project, Drama For The Mind 2021.
The participants have developed their own work, and have then performed their monologues to camera. There’s 8 lovely pieces, funny, moving, emotional… a fantastic job by all involved.
I’ve assembled it all to in to a video to Premiere online this Saturday evening at 7pm (UK). Please drop by if you can. https://youtu.be/t72A6-RtVeo
Meanwhile Lockdown continues.
As does my Lockdown log. We’re now at Lockdown 3, Day 74 – can you believe it?
And still the bnuch of lying con artists we have in government continue. And now they are trying to stop us protesting. I see trouble ahead….
You can see my latest updates below….
My Day. Sun 28 Mar. Lockdown 3/Day 83. L03D83.
My Day. Sat 27 Mar. Lockdown 3/Day 82. L03D82.
My Day. Fri 26 Mar. Lockdown 3/Day 81. L03D81
My Day. Thurs 25 Mar. Lockdown 3/Day 80. L03D80
My Day. Weds 24 Mar. Lockdown 3/Day 79. L03D79
My Day. Tues 23 Mar. Lockdown 3/Day 78. L03D78
As you can see from the updates, I’m building a garden bar, assembled from old pallets, in preparation for the March 29 Roadmap date for meeting another person in your garden – and the April 12 date for up to 6 people meeting in a garden.
Better stock up on the booze 🙂