Nose on Film

Evil EdnaWhen I was a teenager, I appeared on national television.  Here’s how it happened…

I was working in admin at the BBC. A nationwide postal strike had been going on for a while and programmes that needed pre-arranged public involvement were struggling. Unusual amounts of tickets for recordings became available to BBC staff, so desperate were the programme makers to fill their studio audiences.

Now, in those bygone days, there was a popular weekly programme called Top of the Pops. It usually involved stars with dodgy, expensive clothing and interesting hair who stood around gyrating and (often) miming to their chart-topping hits. A backdrop of young people with cheaper clothing but equally interesting hair were required to shuffle around (‘dance’, as we called it back then) in front of these artistes.

So there I was: a teenager with teenage friends. Clearly one of the first ports of call for the recruitment of extras on this ground-breaking musical extravaganza. I snapped up tickets for myself and two of my best friends. They know who they are. (*waves to Claire and Sarah*) One of them recently posted a YouTube clip on Facebook that featured our television appearance. It was followed by lots of people asking, “Where are you exactly? I can’t see you!” But Claire and I know. We can spot ourselves right away, even through all the dry ice and artistic camera-work. (I’m convinced there was also a sighting of the side of my nose during the closing credits, but there’s no lingering evidence of that one. )

I should admit that I’ve never exactly aspired to a career in front of the cameras, but being in the background of showbiz is a different matter. I’ve worked as a television subtitler, moved instruments for radio orchestras and sold t-shirts at Madonna concerts. (And yes, I’ve met Madonna, but that’s a whole other Girls Heart Books post. Someone remind me in the future!)

Have you ever wanted to be on television, or work behind the scenes? What would be your ideal television appearance? An X Factor winner who gets drenched with colourful gunge on CBBC? A clever contestant in a brainiac quiz show? An alien extra in Doctor Who (or the new Doctor herself, perhaps…?) Let me know in the comments!


P.S. If you want to see me ‘on screen’, head over to my site where you can view a very recent film of me made by Mr Abiks at Newton Abbot College, being interviewed by a student called Natalia, who is a total star.

I promise it features absolutely no ‘dancing’ at all. (But there is quite a clear shot of the side of my nose.)

31 thoughts on “Nose on Film

  1. Hi Lu! 😀

    I’m watching the interveiw Right Now! You talk about your books really, in a fun way!

    Have a good day! x

    (p,s, i miss the old programs i grew up with..)

  2. Congratulations on getting a fab job at the BBC AND getting to be on Top on the Pops! (The BBC bit is what I strive to do as a career. *crosses fingers*) Also I’d ADORE! to appear in anyway (even a quick view of the side of my nose at the closing credits would suffice) as I am a GIGANTIC fan! Also to be the first disabled character on there would be pretty emence. (So if they ever ask you if you know anyone who’d like to be in an episode.. You know where I am!;D) I was on TV too, a few years ago now actually. The Sarurday morning show on CBBC called TMi, presented by Sam and Mark. Yeah, me, my sister and my cousin were a team on there! It was an amazing day:D I even got to meet Peter Andre (who was very nice and not mega-star divaish at all) and also the Blue Peter presenter Helen (who was equally very nice) and we got to sit in the Blue Peter garden (my dream since I was 5) so that was definitely something I will NEVER forget! (It also deepened my dream to work at the BBC though, and I don’t think all the people at the studio I met actually liked that they were being asked a million questions by a hyper twelve year old. Ah well.) I never get tired of telling people hehe 🙂 unfortunately you can’t watch the episode anymore though:(
    So great post, and don’t forget to write about meeting Madonna! (My mom is very jealous) ❤

    • Ooh, I remember TMI! I probably watched the one you were in! Fantastic. And I bet everyone loved meeting you and answering your questions. I’m looking forward to seeing you on TV loads more in future… 🙂

  3. lol!!!
    I would love to be the doctor as I am absolutely obessed with Dr who!!!!!!
    I’ve also wanted to be on Blue Peter! No idea why.
    But sometimes I think wouldn’t it be cool to be a presenter doing all those cool challeneges and even sky diving!!! (I’ve always wanted to go skydiving, it looks wicked)!!!


  4. I’d like to be someone behind the scenes, doing amazing stuff like special effects without having to act (I can’t act, not even a persona like a presenter). It must be amazing to watch the finished show and think “I made those prosthetics!/I green-screened that background in!/I set up that explosion!/etc”…

  5. Hi Luisa!

    Wow, that’s so cool! I do have times when I wish I might be famous, but I think I would prefer to cast people, and work behind the scenes.
    So was Top of The Pops a bit like the Top 40 on VIVA or 4Music nowadays? That’s such a cool story, though, to tell!
    I’ve always thought about being a presenter….and this may be a little weird. But I never wanted to be Sam or Mark or Caroline on TMI, so basically not comedy – I call it “messing around”, but hey 🙂 !! I wanted to be a BBC News presenter. Like a journalist…

    Wait, I just re-read your post and….

    YOU MET MADONNA? WOW!!!!!! That’s amazing!!!

    Thanks again for the books. How long, ideally, should the reviews be?


  6. Hi Luisa,

    Wow! That is amazing.. Madonna? INCREDIBLE!!

    I don’t know if I’d want to be famous, I’m really shy, and I’d end up stressing and worrying rather than enjoying, I’d rather write the scripts and the songs!!

    Fab post!!

  7. I’m really conflicted about what job I want when I’m older, but I think every idea involves being in the limelight! It’s not that I’m big-headed (I hope..!) but I’d like to be looked up to someday by a young girl, like I admire all the authors on GHB. I want to be an author and illustrator, or an artist, or an actress in the theatre. I’m not all that stylish but I love drawing clothing designs and things. Being on Top of The Pops would have been my dream!!!

  8. Hi Luisa, great post!!!

    I suppose I’d LIKE to be famous when I’m older (or right now!), being in a movie, walking down the red carpet or something like that, but then I think what the “knock on effects” would be, as my Geography teacher likes to say.

    Looking at the news, famous people hardly get to move without it going in the National Papers or on the news. You don’t really get much privacy, mostly it’s just camera people following you around when you don’t even know.

    And have you seen what drastic measures people go to to look good?

    Nah-being famous isn’t for me…But I would like to be the next Doctor…Or be in a movie…

  9. Hi there, Laura!
    Wow, you’re so lucky to meet Madonna! That’s amaaaaaa-ZING!

    There are lots of times when I wish I was famous, where I wish to be on stage, or in a movie, or be a presenter. Thing is, I am probably the most shyest (is that a word?) person in the whole of Britain. Honestly, I just get so nervous all the time infront of people. Especially people who I don’t know! I am extremely shy, and I just breakdown. When I see famous people walking down the red carpet, I do often envy them. However, being famous would not be my style. It’s just not me. I would probably just hide away, hiding my face from the cameras. Being famous is just wishful thinking for me…
    Congratulations on getting a job at the BBC and being on Top on the Pops! That’s brilliant! Great post!!
    Shelly x

  10. Fab post Luisa!

    I’ve wanted to be on T.V for a long, long time… Wonder if it will ever happen (!!)

    I want to be a Journalist/Actress/Vet

    And two of those jobs include being on the box!!

    So maybe, just maybe, could you, the TV producers, make way from your domino’s pizzas and room for, ahem, little old me??

  11. Pingback: Gold! | Girls Heart Books

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