It is Podcast Month which means that we will be bringing you all the fun shows you should be carrying around in your back pocket on a phone or a walkman (if you still have one of those!!). Today we talk to a podcast with a twist – it is lead by an improvised character that is originally focussed on Vladi the vampire and may branch out to more characters soon! I sat down with the Podcasts creator, Maggie, to find out more.
Hello Maggie! Tell us a little bit about yourself and your podcast?
Hi there, I’m creating a little world called Bloody_London. It’s character-driven improvised comedy about people struggling to get by in the six zones, but whose uniquely different motivations compel them to keep searching for their pot of gold..
How did the podcast come about?
I was contacted by my first London Theatre company, The Conway Collective, in summer 2017 as they were looking for minute monologues. I’d made some short puppet snap-opera episodes a few years ago and this project also sounded like a laugh. 2017 also saw my first short stories broadcast on radio and I’d started doing stand-up. Character, character, character. It all sort of made sense and was something I really wanted to do.
How do you decide what each of the episodes are about?
There’s a series of episodes on each character. There is no scripting or planning. An idea will come, either directly from the previous episode, or something bizarre overheard in public from a stranger, or I’ll focus on an unusual habit / mannerism of someone I know and go with that. It’s the same with writing stories: we already have a lot of the material inside us which we’ve been absorbing since very little. Being able to flesh it out is hugely rewarding.
What have been some of your favourite highlights of past podcasts?
The published podcasts so far focus on my first character, Vladi the male vampire. It was liberating being allowed to wax lyrical in a Transulgarian accent about annoying, little things.
Two of my favourite moments are when Vladi gets brow-beaten by his passive-aggressive cleaning woman (played by Steve Roe) and when one of Vladi’s vampire colleagues, Nikolai (played by voice actor Michael Brunner) speaks his mind in a Tesco.
What are your aims for your podcast in 2018?
Record episodes around characters Hard Sally (who runs a brothel in Camden), Putupon Pete (married; doesn’t like it) and Barbara McPh*ck, who writes am online blog called ‘Dating Liam Neeson’. Also, to publish the recorded ones online it takes me longer to do this as I have very poor sight…but we manage with help from friends
How do you decide who to have as a guest on each show?
I will have heard something in someone’s voice or seen their range while they’ve been improvising and a light goes on.
What makes you different to other podcasts out there?
I don’t know anyone else crossing genders, ageing up, changing accents and wearing wigs just to record a whine about bloody London. Perhaps it’s Multiple Personality Disorder, but it doesn’t really matter as it makes me laugh.
Who would be your dream guest to appear and why?
A close call between Robert De Niro (the voice and all its associations), and Julie Andrews appearing in a dream sequence as a Fairy Godmother
What other podcasts are you a fan of and why?
Destination Podcast – brilliant!
what advice would you give for people thinking about starting a podcast?
Only do it if you enjoy listening to comedy podcasts and really want to get your stuff out there. Don’t do it because you think it’s something you ‘should’ be doing. It’s fun. That’s it.
If people want to find out more about your show where should they visit online / social media?
There is a page on Facebook called “Bloody_London”. Don’t forget the underscore 😀
In three words why should people listen to your show?
Because they’re short.