She had to say it twice as if I didn't know the guy! Panic struck inside, but outside I was calm and collected. I promptly suggested that we could maybe use Skype to include them in the session and they thought it to be a good idea, if we could test it before hand. Bookings were done and by Wednesday morning Wayde's manager confirmed the recording will be done Thursday at 8 am. Fear struck me. Not because he was well known, but I was afraid I would not be able to cope technically with what was required.
Thursday, after a bad night's sleep, I got up really early. It was pouring with rain, which is a nightmare for recording and even worse with risk of thunder damaging equipment. 8 o'clock came and in the driveway parked a beautiful Audi RS3 in Royal Blue. That made my day almost more than recording a world famous athlete! Wayde was friendly and very pleasant, but in a slight rush as he had a doctor's appointment afterwards and then had to leave the country for two weeks. I couldn't mess this up. As we sat down, in came the Skype call. Initially the line quality was really bad, but luckily it improved soon and off we went. The reading was a TV advertisement for Audi and is essentially just 30 seconds. But soon I realised why the ad company wanted to listen in. Wayde was very nervous and way out of his depth. He was just not used to reading a few lines with empathy, the right influxes and emotions. But his voice sounded nice and warm over the mic, which I was thankful for. The people in Cape Town gave pointers every now and then about the feel they want and what they like and don't like in a take. I picked up soon enough and was able to help him as well with tone and emotion. Soon they seemed happy to sit back and listen, even muted their side of the call and gave notes every three or four takes. That's when I realised: We're all just people. He runs fast, but he can also struggle with things in life. Things I almost see as second nature. The atmosphere was calm and relaxed. All of us suddenly had a job to focus on and fame and fortune had no part in it. We had to take quite a few breaks as the thunder became really loud at times. Even they could hear it over Skype! But none of us would dare wish the rain away. we were just too grateful. We easily had close to 30mm of rain that morning.
An hour and a half later we had many takes, with many different tones. Some close mic'ed and others more cheerful or thoughtful. And suddenly everyone at once said: That's it. We have more than enough in the bag. And off he went, with the roar of that Audi down the street giving me a tingle in my spine once more. You can't make these things up! Another day at the job. Another happy client.
Since I started focusing on marketing my services better through this website and social platforms, I really attracted a lot more clients who never heard of me and would otherwise never find me. I learned a lot this past few months about social media and the importance of a properly run website. Indeed Ali from Ogilvy confirmed later that my website was the first one she found when they started looking for studios in Bloemfontein. In fact, there are many bigger and better equipped studios in town, but I got the call first. I even considered referring them to other studios that had better call-in facilities, but luckily sanity prevailed and, after looking past the big names, I realised that it's just another VO recording I'm very used to, just with people listening in over an internet connection. It was a quick job. Small money. But still, I met Wayde!!
I'm the owner of the studio. In this Blog I intend to write short pieces on everyday life in the studio, the things I do, the things I learned and sometimes the fun things I do outside of studio. Be it an interesting theatre production or something happening at my favourite coffee joint!