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  • Writer's pictureAudrey Tang

Let us give you the "hero edit"

We've all heard about the "Villain edit" - it's the phrase that often comes out when a disgruntled reality TV personality doesn't like the eventual chosen footage that made the final cut. Now while it is certainly possible...although not always probable that a narrative was imposed in order to influence the viewer, what we do need to remember at all times - is that whatever made the cut was still said at some point in the recording!

Nevertheless, a lot of people, especially those who are doing well in their field but are just not comfortable in front of the camera come to me and ask, "Can I come and see a shoot before my interview?"; "Are we able to retake", and my favourite "Are you a good editor (because I'm about to f*** up)?"

My response is - I'm a kind editor.

Creating a "hero edit"

In exactly the same way as I've seen good actors let down by poor direction, a good editor can also make a difference. So I work incredibly hard to make sure that when I edit, I make you look as good as possible. Now, if you STILL don't like what's there, I'm afraid you'll have to consider the source material...but on the majority of occasions I can improve anything you're worried about with a cut, a close up, or an insert, and in some cases even elevate your concept because I can see what you're going for and my studio can provide an enhancement:

a) THAT LITTLE EXTRA ZING: One recent guest star had prepared a sketch rather than a comedy set for our e360tv Network show, so we simply gave her a suitable background for the character - take a look here at her fabulous performance - and imagine how different it might have been in terms of impact on the standard studio set for the show:

The standard background for the show Maya appeared on:

b) SUPPORT: Further, my background in community theatre has given me an understanding of how much rehearsal - not to mention teaching and support - is essential to get the very best out of someone who may never have even been on stage or screen before...and I mean "by objective standards", not "My best friend said I was great". And the reason I say this is not to put anyone off giving it a go, but rather to understand that I - and my studio team - know how to help you shine, no matter what your level.

c) TIME LIMITS: It's also not about the retakes! Studio time and theatre rehearsal time isn't the same thing...sometimes you just need to work with the best of what you've captured.

d) AN EXPERIENCED DIRECTOR'S EYE & UNDERSTANDING: Of course I'm not going to embarrass anyone by showing any raw files - and I delete them after the edit is made anyway - so MAYBE, just maybe you watch the final product and think "Oh, I'm rather good" as opposed to "Thank you for your cut" - but actually that's a risk worth taking. Why? Because with practice you WILL improve and I'll need to edit less anyway; and also if you look good, we all look good!! Or, if you're a seasoned pro (like Maya!) - then if I can provide you with the bells and whistles which a greenscreen especially can offer - they're all yours!!

e) A COMFORTABLE, PROFESSIONAL ENVIRONMENT: Everyone who has come into our studio has said the same thing of our space "It's so pleasant...." with those in the know adding "...and your equipment is (actually) great!" Of course it is, I replaced the air-conditioning (and heating), the toilets, and put in the furniture all at my cost, the team take it in turns to provide tea, coffee and biscuits for our little utility room, and the studio and podcast "pod", installed by the fabulous Hire Frequencies boasts high level tech including Sennheiser and Rode mics which are personal favourites and the brain-saving Elgato Streamdeck (no hot keys for us!) If you're going to do it at all, you need to do it well!

So when I talk about how proud I am of the studio, it's not just about the product itself. It's a gorgeous space in the centre of Bedford Town (with disabled access and toilets to boot!), but I know the extra that we offer just by the team caring about showcasing you at your best, and having that experience to create it in post if need be.

If you'd like to hire our studio, we charge £500 for 1/2 day - wet hire - with myself or one of my team helping you with your recording or streaming. Editing is extra.

Dr Audrey Tang is the founder of Wellbeing Media Studio. An experienced community theatre director, producer, and performer, Audrey is also a professional (equity registered) actress, also holding her Performance Certificate from LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art). Audrey’s TV & Film background work means she can also be seen in 007 Spectre, Dr Strange, Peep Show, The Tracey Ullman Show, Eastenders and Holby City. A trained (recreational) burlesque instructor and dancer Audrey also choreographs – and of course teaches drama (including LAMDA examinations) on an ad-hoc basis – when she’s not writing Business Books (4 to date with Pearson Education) and delivering training!

Audrey created the award winning "Retrain Your Brain" podcast and "The Wellbeing Lounge" on NLive Radio, and currently hosts and produces two shows for the e360TV Network, a USA streaming platform. "Mental Health Matters" is a deep dive into all things wellbeing with the experts; and "Skits and Quibbles" gives upcoming performers the opportunity to perform in a studio with the added advantage of the visibility of the show.  And she always champions the performing arts as central to helping instil confidence, offer opportunity and connect…click you might say.

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