Every time I've looked at the sky today, I've seen a rainbow staring back at me. How romantic is that? I've never been pursued by a rainbow before, but it felt rather magical!
It's been a productive day. We spent this morning with a team of BBC technical people looking at some of our more complicated locations; the Metro depot, where we're doing a pre-dawn shoot, Gateshead Station, where we'll be filming all night and a scrap heap, just south of Sunderland, where our brass band will be performing. It was hi-viz jackets and hard hats all the way. I'm surrounded by incredibly capable people and am particularly impressed by the cameraman on this project, who, just like his counterpart in Yorkshire, is called Keith. Well, I guess it saves learning a new name!
We've finally made the decision not to shoot in HD and I fully understand why. It's such a daring project and it involves so many people jumping into the unknown. The BBC Regions are not yet HD ready, and when things are complicated enough, sometimes you just have to stick with what you know. We're shooting in digi-beta, which is what Little Britain was shot in, so I'm not that disappointed! Digibeta looks lovely on television.
This evening was magical. We battled our way to The Sage through terrible gales to listen to the final rehearsal of the choir we formed specially for the project. I gave them an enormous challenge; to sing the names of 30 Metro stations in glorious 4-part harmony. Many had never sung in choirs before, and the majority didn’t read music, so everything was taught by ear. They only had four weeks to learn it, but they did it! I was so immensely proud to hear them singing in proper harmony, and started crying very quietly to myself like a proper wuss! Sure, there are still a few corners that need to be ironed out, but what an amazing achievement.
Pepys’ diary entry for February 4th, 1661, includes some of the longest sentences I think I’ve ever read! The first one includes no fewer than 80 words, and I’d quote it in full if I didn’t think it was one of the most boring things I’ve ever read! Pepys spent the evening in the pub with Sir William Penn, Colonel Slingsby and “several others... men and women.” They played parlour games; the forfeits for the young ladies being, of course, to kiss Pepys, who was, I'd say, a complete letch!