With Kc Wayland of We’re Alive
How do you create authentic sounding fight scenes in audio drama? We doubt there’s anyone with more experience on this subject than Kc Wayland, whose show We’re Alive has tonnes of fantastic, vivid, and utterly immersive punch-ups, shoot-ups, and full blown wars. On top of this, Kc also offers tips and advice on casting your show, holding auditions, and what criteria to look for in potential actors.
“The reasons the fight scenes sound so real is because we are fake-performing them in front of a microphone, whether it’s through Foley, or through the actors themselves, and it’s also a mix of editing. “
Kc gives the example of a sword fight in We’re Alive.
“You have to build an environment around them, where somebody misses, they hit the wall, or they hit a box and the box crumbles. You kinda have to build the set in your mind of what they are doing. I think a lot of the time it’s a mistake where a writer or producer will be like “oh, a fight ensues” instead of really plotting out that “they are in a hall, they move to this doorway, over to here, this thing collapses” You have to coordinate fights as if you’re going to be shooting them on film, because if the scene is not clear to you and your actors, performers, or sound designers, then it won’t become clear in your production. You have to really know where you’re going instead of just throwing it together and saying “this is gonna work” cos it won’t.”
On casting your audio drama, Kc says
“It’s a little bit more fluid if you have that person’s voice in your head when you’re writing, and that you also know their abilities and things, so I would say, if you’re doing an on-going audio drama it would be nice to cast them and then merge your production a little bit in there, but you’re going to have something set before you ever go to the casting block, cos you can’t just say “I’m looking for… just… a guy, and we’ll figure out the character later”. You have to have any idea in your head of who that person is to kind of find some description of what you want.”