Media Parents Back to Work Scheme alumnus Series Producer Ali McBride writes about her latest productions. Ali was a winner on the 2013 Media Parents Edinburgh Back to Work Scheme, and the 2015 Scheme is now open for applications so please apply!
It’s been a busy few months since I last checked in. The good news is that the series I was working on, Call The Council, has finally made it to air. And fear not – if you missed the first few episodes, it’s on BBC1 every morning at 11am until the 17th of July and/or iPlayer too.
Seeing it finally make it on air has brought back many memories of what can only be described as a fab production. It could be that I’m experience that feeling after childbirth, of course… i.e. as soon as it’s over, you forget the pain but I really don’t think so. Looking back, it was genuinely one of those productions that just worked. The reason? Simple – the team… we just clicked. For those of you who have battled through a daytime series you know it ain’t for the faint hearted. It’s fast, relentless and unforgiving. As soon as one deadline passes, the next is on its heels and looming large. That said, our team quickly got into our groove and, as with parenting, realised the only way to survive it was with a bloomin’ good schedule!
At the helm of keeping us in line was our Production Manager and mum of a 4yr old who worked part-time (or should I say was so darn efficient that she managed the whole production in part-time hours!). Most of the team locked in edits were parents too actually, often juggling viewings around football training and baby pickups. Now not everyone on the team came in every morning wiping snot off their shoulder but a lot of us did. And those who didn’t, and remained snot-free, seemed able to stomach the odd witterings about surviving drop offs unscathed etc.
Our production survived toddler tantrums, teething and temperatures – and all done with lots of laughs and good humour. There was also a quiet understanding that when one of us said ‘I’ve got to go now’ we were able to. No drama, no questions, no glancing at the clock. Just an understanding and appreciation of what that meant. Sometimes the planets just do align on productions; the right people, the right content, the right attitudes – but whatever it was, I’d love to get that team back together for another run.
At the moment, I’m Series Producing a very different beast of a production. It’s the Current Affairs output for The One Show on BBC1. This time, there aren’t as many other parents on the team but there really is only so much time a girl should spend talking about teething and temperatures so perhaps that’s not such a bad thing!