It’s eight o’clock on a Thursday evening and a group of actors have crammed themselves into the Xpression studio: the microphones are set, the scripts are in hand, and I, the writerdirector, have positioned myself in the control room. I press the ‘Talk’ button to communicate with my stars and… nothing. The actors can’t hear anything from me. A frantic search for the source of the problem, followed by some even more frantic messages sent to those intheknow reveals the source of the problem: a fairly innocuous dial was turned on, not off. With communications reestablished, we can finally begin – ‘curtain up’.
Writers to hire, scripts to write, actors to audition…and a fresh new look
This was the start of production for first term’s programme of plays for Xpression Scripted, the team behind all the creative content for Xpression FM. And it’s only one stage in a process which began in May last year: we’ve had writers to hire, scripts to write, actors to audition, and a fresh new look for our social media – and finally, after all this time, we’ll soon be kicking off with our dedicated radio show Xpression Presents. Excited is an understatement… With more content than we’ve ever broadcast before, there has never been a better time to become a listener.
We have a terrifying Halloween play, a science fiction drama, a suspenseful three-part spy thriller, a spooky festive ghost story for Christmas, and the hilarious Xpression Christmas panto to round off the term! Such a plethora of different genres of content highlights the magic of radio drama: you can go anywhere at anytime.
As a drama student and actor I have been involved in many wonderful creative projects at university, but nothing has come quite as close to the inventiveness, scale and freedom you can achieve with radio drama. As well as a host of new radio plays, we will once again be returning to Union Road, Xpression’s flagship radio soap opera, now reaching its third series. For those unfamiliar with the show, it follows the lives of the residents on Union Road in Exeter with the classic soap opera stories of love, betrayal, secrets, and lies.
We will once again be returning to union road: Xpression’s flagship drama
When planning the series, I was keen to give it a fresh start, and indeed the majority of the characters and stories are completely new, but we’re still aware that this is the beginning of a new chapter in a long story – that will be reflected in the stories we tell. It’s a perfect jumping-on point for new listeners, but stays faithful enough to its origins to keep our veteran fans happy. It’s been a long time in the making, but with our biggest schedule yet we’re incredibly excited for you to hear what we have created.
Let Xpression take you on a journey from the streets of Exeter, to distant planets, to haunted houses, secret government headquarters, and the magically bizarre land of panto – all from the comfort of your bedroom, living room, the library, or even the Guild Shop!
Xpression Presents begins 28 October at 5pm only on 87.7 Xpression FM.