Laughter track

WellyMan

Active Member
Was a laughter track added around 1999? I can't remember if the book I read mentions it, but have noticed on the episodes this week it's quite intrusive and doesn't add to the enjoyment. Maybe I'll get used to it and mentally tune it out.
 

maltrab

Administrator
Staff member
Was a laughter track added around 1999? I can't remember if the book I read mentions it, but have noticed on the episodes this week it's quite intrusive and doesn't add to the enjoyment. Maybe I'll get used to it and mentally tune it out.
I don't believe so, maybe they just used better microphones to capture the audience laughter
 

Barrychuckle

Well-Known Member
I can tell you for definite there isn't a laughter track as I went to watch the first finished screenings of a couple of episodes in 2008 at Teddington and Alan Bell addressed us to say he could easily use canned laughter but he preferred recording a genuine audience enjoying the episodes.
 

Sarkus

Well-Known Member
They never used a laugh track or anything like that. Like Barrychuckle says, they always used real laughter from screening audiences. Up until the late 1980s the indoor scenes were mostly performed live before an audience, so it was slightly different until then.
 

wstol

Well-Known Member
Think this info is reasonably correct, please tell me otherwise.

I think in the 1990s they stopped recording the interior scenes in front of a studio audience.

The whole show was recorded first, then shown at a theatre, and the actual audience laughter dubbed on.

Before all this, just the exterior scenes were pre-filmed, and the interior scenes filmed in a studio in front of an audience. The pre-filmed scenes shown on a monitor. All actual laughter from all scenes recorded onto the programme.

Most shows do have genuine laughter.
 

imitation700mb

Well-Known Member
Think this info is reasonably correct, please tell me otherwise.

I think in the 1990s they stopped recording the interior scenes in front of a studio audience.

The whole show was recorded first, then shown at a theatre, and the actual audience laughter dubbed on.

Before all this, just the exterior scenes were pre-filmed, and the interior scenes filmed in a studio in front of an audience. The pre-filmed scenes shown on a monitor. All actual laughter from all scenes recorded onto the programme.
Most shows do have genuine laughter.
I think you're right wstol. They also had some of the cast there to give the audience a full night of entertainment. The BBC actually went to great lengths to ensure the audience had a good time. The history of the show and how some of the production is done is all explained in the 30th anniversary documentary as here. The part in question begins with Roy Clarke at about 1 hour & 4 minutes in. (I know its not the best quality video, but you can get the ideas)

 
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Moonraker

Member
I must say, I prefer the laughter on screen, even if it is dubbed in. I didn't really think much about it until I watched some of the Christmas episodes, which were films; so there was no laughter.
 

captain clutterbuck

Well-Known Member
It must be strange almost bizarre in the current climate for those stand up comedians who are streaming shows over the internet where they are maybe filming them with one cameraman / technician who controls the feed, so they regale the audience with their stories and jokes to which there is no reaction [unless the cameraman/technician laughs] .

How strange must that be when they are used to an audience laughing their heads off . Its the same with music. I have watched two virtual concerts streamed from my local theatre , a place I have seen countless shows at , a theatre with a capacity of 1100 and it was so strange when the band finished each number there was a single clap from the guy doing the technical work for the transmission. It must be astonishing to the artists.
 

wstol

Well-Known Member
Some things are better with the laughter, others aren't.

Getting Sam Home and Uncle of the Bride were brilliant without the audience laughter. They really felt like films.

However, I felt Big Day at Dream Acres needed laughter, it dragged because there wasn't enough plot to fill a feature length time slot.

Audience laughter somehow reminds us to laugh, or at least notice the funny bits.

Audience laughter on MASH doesn't seem right, and is often removed on some TV showings.
 

and7barton

Well-Known Member
I must say, I prefer the laughter on screen, even if it is dubbed in. I didn't really think much about it until I watched some of the Christmas episodes, which were films; so there was no laughter.
I agree - It always seemed strangely ...... "flat" with no laughter.
 
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