Senji (senji) wrote,

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Lord of the Rings readthrough.

megamole's just nagged me, which is a good thing since I'd never get anything done otherwise, and reminded me that I said I'd say stuff about the read-through...

Well, we arrived at Borders a little before 9am to find that they were still shut, since they don't open until 9am. At this point I made the fateful prediction that it wouldn't possibly start before 09:30 and it didn't.

Initially everyone was having problems with the mikes; they were somewhat more directional than you might've wanted, and it took some time for people to get the hang of speaking into them -- a problem that was exacerbated by the fact that there wasn't time for everyone to have a go on the mikes before they started; the dress hadn't had the mikes at all. A couple of the readers kept on turning towards the people they were addressing as well, which made the problem worse.

Also there should apparantly have been one more than there was. Additionally I gather that something had gone wrong with the sound-effects CD, so things had to be improvised in places.

ewx was unfortunately missing, so his roles were mainly (entirely?) taken up by Brian Sibley (who wrote the radio adaption).

So, what stands out?

After she'd bedded in with the mikes, Frodo was wonderful, particularly in the more 'stressed' scenes. She even managed to sound like Gollum at the end when she was refusing to throw the ring away.

Sam, I thought, had too high-pitched a voice, but otherwise her accent was spot on; except when she was singing (losing your accent when singing isn't all that surprising, really). With my suspension-of-disbelief in on the pitch she made a really good Sam I thought.

MHW made a really good Gandalf; you could hear the slight touch of humor in everything he said, and most of the time he actually had a smile on his face while he was reading. The Bridge of Khazad-dûm scene drew applause from the entire audience, and almost got a standing ovation.

megamole's Gimli was much better than the film one in my opinion, and I was having difficulty avoiding tears during the 'lock of hair' scene. Oh, and the range of his voice is just scary!

And thinking of Galadriel, apart from getting the pacing slightly too fast she got the bit where Frodo offers her the ring absolutely perfect. She also had a couple of problems with her elvish.

emperor needs a mention for both Treebeard (HOOM!) and his trademark Sméagol, who was on fine fettle. Him and Frodo deserved applause in scene 69 (the Crack of Doom), but it would've been entirely inappropiate to the story to have given it...

Aragorn started out a bit weak, but improved significantly as he gained confidence; until by the end it was not hard to imagine him a King.

Oh, and I can't finish without mentioning enismirdal, whose Nob (the boy at the Prancing Pony) will probably be my lasting image of that character forever now...

And I think I'll stop there. Other people also made good performances (Eomer, Faramir, Boromir, Theoden, Eowyn come to mind), but didn't have a particular scene where I felt they really shone.

Likewise there were other mishaps, but we need not go into those!

All in all it was a very good day; and I was exhausted by the end of it -- I'm glad from that point of view that I hadn't been reading!

My one note for "next time" would be -- prioritise the technical stuff a bit more during preparation...
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