ASSASSIN'S CREED

ASSASSIN'S CREED
January 2017
"John Banks is one of the UK's most prolific audiobook narrators, working for the likes of Big Finish, Audible, Random House and Games Workshop.

He is a true multi-voice, creating everything from monsters to marauding aliens.

He is also an accomplished stage and TV actor."

audible.co.uk 2018

Coming in November...

Coming in November...

Hello...

...I'm John Banks - welcome to my website.

The majority of my working life has been spent in the theatre with companies including
York Theatre Royal, Cheltenham Everyman, Sheffield Crucible, Bristol Old Vic, Manchester Royal Exchange and the National Theatre in London.

Television work includes Emmerdale, Coronation Street, and 'Allo, Allo!'. I have also worked on a number of radio drama and comedy productions with the BBC.

Since March 2009, I have enjoyed playing a huge variety of characters in more than 250* audio-drama stories for Big Finish Productions and The Black Library/Games Workshop, details of which can be found in the postings below.


There are also details listed here of the 150* audio books I've recorded since March 2013,
including the unabridged New Revised Standard Version of The Bible, for companies including audible.co.uk, Hachette, RNIB, W.F. Howes, Little Brown Group, Penguin Random House, Games Workshop, Orion, Fantom Films & Ladbroke Audio.

(*figures at October 2018)

I hope you find something of interest here and come back soon for further updates.


For all posts, reviews and audio samples, please scroll down...

Games Workshop

Games Workshop

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Monday, 24 June 2013

...can you hear me at the back?


Hello and welcome.

I've just been looking at details of the three unabridged audio-books I recorded last month with Neil Gardner at Ladbroke Audio and listening to the samples provided on the Audible web site.



Should you wish to do the same, here's a link: Audible: Audio-Books narrated by John Banks


                                     
   Length: 3 hrs and 56 mins                       Length: 15 hrs and 21 mins                 Length: 7 hrs and 38 mins  
   Release Date: 11/06/2013                      Release Date: 20/06/2013                   Release Date: 30/06/2013                              
If you decide to download any, or all of these stories, I hope you'll enjoy listening to them as much as I enjoyed recording them.

I must also say a big 'thank you' to David Richardson, Barnaby Edwards and Neil Gardner for their trust, generosity and unfailing support in making these recordings possible.

  

Thursday, 20 June 2013

...so now what?


...good question!

I think it fair to say that when asked to respond in an interview, I like to give a full answer. There's many a time, during the recording of a Big Finish interview for example, when the batteries have expired on the portable gizmo being used to capture my every thought; or when the interviewer, usually Mr David Richardson, has nodded off, having asked something complicated like "so who are you and what are you playing in this story?".

At some time in the not too distant future, it may be that an interview conducted this morning with Benjamin Maio Mackay for The Preachrs Podcast, will be released to an unsuspecting tranche of Dr Who fans, whose eardrums, if not life expectancy, will be severely compromised by the responses I've given to a series of seemingly straightforward and innocuous questions. I've listened to other people being interviewed by Benjamin; Dan Starkey, Sophie Aldred and Nev Fountain for example, whose answers and observations have been succinct, apposite, witty, charming, informative ...and succinct!


Not only did I ramble on for ages, I'm now also wondering if anything I said might be actionable in a court of law.

"Q: do you like baked beans? A: yes/no", not " let me tell you about the history of the baked bean since it gained popularity in early Sumerian culture...".

He'll have to cut it, he'll have to cut it; no server in the world could cope with the pressure of downloading such an interview... and why did I start talking about Tom Cruise? Why?

As if that weren't enough, I've just joined the Tweetersphere. Does that make me one of the Tweeterati or the Tweeterscenti or just a bit of a Tweet?

Answers on a post card please...

Thursday, 13 June 2013

The Axeman hath been released !


As the mayhem of May subsides into contemplative idleness and the company cold, inevitably shared by most of us in The Blind & The Intruder, finally succumbs to its equally inevitable demise - Mervyn's first audio adventure has been released from Big Finish and I'm listening to it now as I write...


Pretty much all the details of The Axeman Cometh have appeared in previous posts, so there's not much to add other than to express the hope that I haven't screwed it up too blatantly, that it will be well received and that there might be further stories to come - we shall see!


Online reviews & comments:

'Mervyn Stone ...played by the note-perfect John Banks'.
                                                                                                  Matt Hills: Reviews in Time and Space 

'...an audio-play, featuring a full-cast of characters played by two actors, John Banks and Nicola Bryant.  
~ I’m pretty sure that if I hadn’t known in advance that it was only two actors, I probably wouldn’t have spotted it.'

'The Axeman Cometh is the best murder mystery that I have seen, read or heard for absolutely ages.'

'Not just Highly Recommended, this is a masterpiece of crime drama. Spread the word!'

                                                                                                     The Puzzle Doctor


'If you love a murder mystery mixed with comedy, this is the release for you.'

'...an hour of audio that must - PLEASE - be the start of a new series...'

                                                                                                      Rated 10/10 by jolyon: The Time Scales

This update from BF:

Out now is the latest of The Mervyn Stone Adventures - and after three murder mysteries in book form (which you can get now in our books special offer), he's finally appearing on audio in The Mervyn Stone Mysteries: The Axeman Cometh.

Hear former Vixens from the Void script editor and sort-of detective Mervyn Stone come to life before your very ears! The exceptionally talented team of Big Finish veteran John Banks and former Doctor Who companion Nicola Bryant play Mervyn Stone and Vanity Mycroft - and a raft of other characters - in The Mervyn Stone Mysteries: The Axeman Cometh. There's even a rather special guest voice...

Another wittily written thriller from the pen of Nev Fountain, The Axeman Cometh sees Mervyn called to the Sounderama Studios to prevent a murder... but will he be in time?

And if you'd like more Mervyn Stone (or want some background before listening to his latest adventure), the seven Mervyn Stone podcasts have been retrieved and put back on the Big Finish website.

 Just click here and you'll find all the instalments.


If you'd like to know more about how Mervyn Stone came into being and how the character made the transition from literature to audio-drama, here's a link to Mass Movement Magazine Issue 35 which carries an extended interview with Nev, Nicola and me: Mass Movement Magazine

Written By: Nev Fountain
Directed By: Patric Kearns

with

John Banks as Mervyn Stone & Nicola Bryant as Vanity Mycroft.

Saturday, 1 June 2013

The Mervyn Stone Mysteries

This year really is flying by and May was an exceptionally busy month which involved recording three audio books for Audible.co.uk, a first for me, a couple of short stories for Ladbroke Audio, a new Dr Who adventure and rehearsing and performing two short plays, The Blind & The Intruder for Tarquin Productions, which have their final performances tonight.

The company have been incredibly supportive and very welcoming of me and I'm deeply grateful to them and director Benji Sperring for trusting me and going along with my interpretation of the roles, which I'm playing quite differently to the original actor, who, as I've previously mentioned, wasn't available for the transfer to The Tabard Theatre.

Thanks to all involved, cast members Judy Tcherniak, Rupert Baldwin, Helena Payne, Saskia Roddick, Darren Beaumont, Michael Fellows and Gina Abolins and to the fabulous Kristina Kreculj, Production Assistant at The Tabard.

Benji Sperring directed with a firm grip and a light touch - always a good combination! - and Rachel Illingworth, as assistant director, the person who got me involved in the production in the first place, proved her abilities once again and is definitely someone to keep an eye on. In fact, she already has a new production playing at The Brackley Jack Studio Theatre which opened last week to excellent notices - Mandrake by Niccolo Machiavelli and is currently rehearsing Titus Andronicus for the Smooth Faced Gentlemen company, which is to be performed at the Buxton Festival and the Edinburgh Festival.


 * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Again, as previously mentioned, this month sees the release of the first Mervyn Stone Mystery, which I'm incredibly excited about. With the amazingly talented and original Nev Fountain as writer and creator of Mervyn Stone and the fantastic Nicola Bryant as my partner in crime, I feel honoured to be involved in the project and hope that it proves popular with Big Finish fans and anyone else who enjoys a beautifully crafted comedy-crime caper.

Here are the details from Big Finish:



"Dear Mervyn. If you want to prevent a murder, then you must attend the recording at the Sounderama studios on Thursday.

 Signed: a friend."


Vixens from the Void is back!

After twenty-five years, the popular leather-clad astro-erotic sci-fi television show is returning!

Well, sort of.  Actually, some devoted Vixens fans have got the licence to do some audios on CD featuring the original cast, and they've invited Mervyn Stone to write an episode.

But that's not the only thing he's been invited to do. He's also been invited to solve a murder.

He arrives at the studio, and who should he find recording her autobiography in the very next booth? Only the TV boss who cancelled Vixens from the Void twenty-five years ago.

No prizes for guessing the murder victim...


Written By: Nev Fountain
Directed By: Patric Kearns

with

John Banks as Mervyn Stone & Nicola Bryant as Vanity Mycroft.



" John Banks is a voice genius; that’s why he’s done five billion audios for them, (Big Finish) and now this is his chance to go centre stage."

Nev Fountain

* * * * * * * * * * *

Before wrapping up this post, I do want to briefly mention another Big Finish release this month, The Dalek Contract featuring dear Mary Tamm, who very sadly passed away almost a year ago. Although uncredited, I did quite a bit of work on this story and indeed on her final story, The Final Phase (released in July). Even though we only worked together a handful of times and have never been credited as working together, Mary made a lasting impression on me, both professionally and personally and I think of her often and remember how well we got on and what fun it was to be around her. Having heard all of her final series of Dr Who recordings, I look forward to listening to The Dalek Contract and The Final Phase and will no doubt be raising a glass or two in her honour.


Fabius Bile

Fabius Bile
WARHAMMER 40,000

Reviews & comments:

The Malazan Empire

Over the course of this 8 book series, the amazing John Banks has had to create and voice 648 distinct characters!

Neil Gardner - producer

Mervyn Stone: The Axeman Cometh


John Banks is a voice genius...

Nev Fountain - writer

Mervyn Stone... played by the note-perfect John Banks.

Matt Hills - Reviews in Time and Space

Dr. Who: The Sleeping City

I also must draw attention to John Banks who is an exceptional voice artist and in this one story performs more characters that I can count. ... it is listening to episodes like this one that really do let his talents shine through.

Tony Jones - Red Rocket Rising

Highlander:

...playing several parts, was the brilliant Big Finish regular John Banks - it was as if there were about 40 different actors in the other booth.

James Moran - writer

I went for the best of the best and brought in voice artiste extraordinaire John Banks.

Paul Spragg - producer

Vienna:

...also features the mind - bogglingly versatile and reliable John Banks

Jonathan Morris - writer

Dead Funny:

The acting is first rate… wonderfully played by John Banks as Richard – his impersonation of Eric Morecambe is worth the admission money alone.

Beverly Greenberg: Bolton Evening News

A Spy Like No Other:

This is the best audio book ever.

The Cult Den

Mr. Happiness:

This early and unfamiliar play by David Mamet is a character study of a 1930s radio counsellor, dispensing suave advice to his devoted listeners. John Banks brings out the wry comedy of this – comedy quite unappreciated by the character – with a clever range of gesture and vocal tone.

Jeremy Kingston: The Times


All My Sons:

This is a beautifully crafted piece ...and it affords a wonderful opportunity for John Readman* to do his All-American Boy act as Chris Keller. This most polished and well observed performance as the blighted son of a blighted father must rank as one of his finest accomplishments yet. ( * see Profile)

The Stage

The Ordeals of Sherlock Holmes

Kudos should also go to John Banks. Lestrade can be a thankless part, but Banks rose to the challenge, playing a pivotal role in this decades long arc.

Raissa Devereux - SciFiPulse

The Judgement of Sherlock Holmes

John Banks is multi-tasking, both as the superb Lestrade and also the villainous and no doubt moustache twirling Sebastian Moran. They sound completely different and I bow to his talent.

Sue Davies - SFcrowsnest


Further reviews and comments are included with specific postings throughout the site.

The War Doctor

The War Doctor
December 2015