Lyden av Tandberg
The stranger-than-fiction story of norwegian industry mogul Vebjørn Tandberg was made into a play for radio – and I got to do the promo.
Vebjørn Tandberg’s story is so unique, so inspiring and so dramatic, I cannot fathom why it is so unknown to the public as it is. Personally I knew very little before I got this project in my lap.
There is a very good documentary on youtube, which I highly recommend, as heart wrecking as it is, if you’re interested in the entirety of the story. The play that the promo was for, can be found at NRK.
This promo was done in late summer 2016, and the timing was perfect and awkward at the same time. A lot of people and, therefore, resources are still on vacation. So if you wanna get stuff done, you’ll have to do it yourself. So i decided to do the camera work my self, and shoot tons of moodily lit angles of some vintage radios. I rigged an absolute ridicoulus dolly setup for our Black Magic Cinema Camera, put it on some rails and got to work. #shittyrig doesn’t even begin to describe how bad this was.
So for the idea itself, there wasn’t a whole lot of options. Nothing but a paper copy of the script exsisted, so I had to come up with some imagery for the voice-over. The equipment that Tandberg produced is very recognizable, so even if you don’t know the backstory you have most likely encountered a Tandberg radio on several occasions. NRK has some of these vintage beauties on storage, so after dusting them off and changing some bulbs, we got them to light up/work.
Thanks to the big screen on the camera itself, doing focusing while pulling the dolly was almost doable, given enough tries at least. Most of the shots are extreme closeup detail shots and keeping the rig from swaying was almost impossible.
The big idea of the promo was to convey the personal tragedy of the story, and use sentimentality and subtle drama to lure the audience in. I did this buy adapting a very hollywood-esque style, with decaying typography, actors’ names and the aforementioned moody pictures. The music stems from AUX vast archive, and I think the search phrase that uncovered it actually was “impending doom”.
Here’s the final version that aired on TV:
Having tons of unused footage and some spare time, I tried my hand at another, less moody version. Take notice of the voice over, it is actually the exact same recording as the moody version.