Thought I'd write a little bit today about my brief encounter in the audience of Deal or No Deal. This is the game show hosted by Noel Edmonds and shown every afternoon on Channel 4. I went to watch my friend, Lynne Hackles, stand behind her box in the East Wing. As you can imagine, I was very excited and told everybody who cared to listen I was going to be on the telly.
I went to the studio in Bristol by train and incidentally got a lot of work done on the teacher notes of the plays I'd written for Hopscotch publishers. It was pouring with rain and I did get a bit stressy about my hair getting ruined, as I paid a small fortune getting it done the day before.
It was quite interesting learning about what goes on the behind scenes and the process of how they actually make a game show. They film three shows a day, which was a little confusing, as although I went to see Lynne on the Wednesday 11th October, the first show that was being filmed that day was Sunday 19th November.
Before the show started they had this comedian who warmed up the audience so they'd make loads of noise. I did manage to get in few close ups for that show and it was fun watching Lynne standing behind her box, clapping, cheering and stuff. In fact, it was a bit like being at a pantomime.
After the first show of the day, I was allowed to have lunch with Lynne and the other contestants in this large warehouse type place. I was already confused what day it really was, so could imagine the contestants, who had been there for over fourteen shows or more already, must have been totally confused. Lynne had already had Halloween and Bonfire Night. Also, my hands hurt after clapping so much and I’d only seen one show – I had two more to go.
When we'd finished lunch, all the contestants got changed and I was surprised to find out they do not get to choose what they wear. What happens is they all have to take about twenty outfits and hand them over to the production team, then the wardrobe people decide what each person wears for each show. I think I would have found it a bit daunting. Lynne told me her husband was coming down that evening and might make the last show.
The next show was Monday 20th November. I was sat right up in the far corner at the back. I was not particularly happy about this as I knew I would not get seen up there and I wanted to be on the telly. They'd made Lynne wear this awful browny green jumper that looked quite ancient. Now Lynne has some beautiful, bright clothes and I really did not think this dowdy, boring jumper suited her. I was a bit surprised she even packed it. But, never mind I thought she'll be stood behind her box, nobody will see it.
The comedian did another warm up. The contestants picked the ball out of the bag to show them which box number would be theirs for the show. Lynne picked number eight and I told the woman sat next to me that was a lucky number. Then the show begun. Noel did his intro and they flashed the names up on the board. Who would be next to come up?
To my amazement, Lynne was picked to take her turn against the banker. My first thought was 'Oh no, her husband wasn't there.' They called me down from the audience and thank goodness Colin had arrived. Apparently, for some unknown reason he'd cancelled his clients, left early and arrived just in time.
They took us both back stage and hooked us to microphones. They re-did all my make-up and hair. Put this bright red lipstick on me, which actually shocked me when I saw it in the mirror after the filming. I was seated in the hot-sit right behind Lynne, next to Colin, her husband, where I would be in camera shot for most of the show. Lucky I got my hair done the day before, although I was still stressing about whether the rain had made it go all frizzy. They used quite a bit of hairspray sticking it back down.
Lynne had an absolutely brilliant show. I was definitely on the telly; although I was a little disappointed they cut my big speaking part out, where I tell everyone who I am. You do hear me saying in the background she should stick with her box near the end of the show but, you don't actually get to see me saying it. Never mind, I still got my fifteen minutes of fame.
I never went in the audience for the last show filmed that day but, joined Lynne and Colin in the green room. I do have a very guilty admission here. I honestly thought the green room would be green and was surprised when it wasn’t.
Lynne Hackles with Noel Edmonds and her husband, Colin
To find out more about Lynne's show and whether she beat the banker, take a look at her website: www.lynnehackles.com. Just thought I'd mention at this point I designed and made Lynne's website for her.
Let me know what you think of the show (if you saw it!), Lynne's website, how terribly vain I am, or anything else you want to tell me.