While Aftershock continues to shake up the scripted podcast world, I had a chance to catch up with Tati Gabrielle about her role in the series. The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina actress lends her voice to the role of McKayla in the iHeartRadio drama, which you can listen to on Apple Podcasts or any preferred podcast platform.
Here’s what Tati told me about Aftershock; for even more about this great new series, tune into the TVBrittanyF Podcast with Sarah Wayne Callies about how she not only starred in but wrote for and directed Aftershock.
Brittany Frederick: How did the podcast come to you initially, and what made it interesting to you? Because this is the first scripted podcast that you’ve done.
Tati Gabrielle: My agent, who’s friends with Sarah and works with Sarah, reached out to me and was like hey, I have this project. One of my clients is trying to reach out to people, find friends, find anybody willing to take part in this if they have interest. I was like yeah, send it over, and I read through it and said this sounds awesome. We started this last year and it was before the surge of scripted podcasts started coming out; I had never seen this concept before, so I was like of course I would love to do this. That’s how I got started.
BF: What did you connect to about McKayla as a character?
TG: Something about my character I really love is, she’s a teenager and she’s very passionate and stands very strong in her convictions. People coming to listen to this, I hope they will take that passion that she has and see through to the end of it. I think at first it’s misguided, but have patience with McKayla.
BF: How was the recording process for you, since you hadn’t done a scripted podcast before? Did it differ too much from your regular acting process?
TG: This process was okay for me because I do voiceover [work]. I’ve done animation and things like that, so I am somewhat used to being in a booth, talk and say your lines but not having the environment. The difference with this is, this is of course much heavier content and a lot of the scenes you will hear are very intense. It was very intense, but we had such a good cast.
Sarah created such a great environment that everybody could feel comfortable to do whatever it is you need to do to bring up the same emotion or make the same sound when one would do this that it didn’t feel hard ever. Sarah, [executive producers] Ben [Haber] and Mark [Ramsey] just set up a really good environment for us.
BF: How much did it help you when the person writing for you and directing you was a fellow actor?
TG: It helped me a ton, because being that Sarah is an actor she’s able to think differently than a lot of other directors, think in the realm of an actor. With getting me to certain places it was truly like your mom holding your hand and being like okay babe, just this way and I was like okay, I know exactly where I need to go, wonderful. It made things a lot smoother too, especially with the craziness of being remote and during the pandemic. It just made things very easy.
BF: Aftershock has a pretty wild premise with a massive earthquake and this new island that emerges as a result, but you’ve worked on some shows where crazy things happen regularly like Sabrina and The 100. So how did the plot of this compare to your past work?
TG: It did remind me of The 100 in a way. This massive earthquake happens, there’s somewhat of a mini-apocalypse that’s happening essentially, and what will people do to survive? What are the most human or primal qualities that tend to come out in these moments?
I feel like this wasn’t as crazy as the things I’ve done before, because it didn’t have the fantasy or sci-fi aspect, but it was so amazing to think this is something that could happen. We’re due for an earthquake in California, so it was a really fun thought experiment to be like okay, what would I do in this situation, if a random island just emerged in the ocean and L.A. was totaled.
BF: Now that you’ve done Aftershock, have you started to explore the world of scripted podcasts just as a listener?
TG: it’s actually become a new little hobby for me. One of my close friends, Chance Perdomo who’s on Sabrina, he did a scripted podcast and I started with that and now I’ve just gone down a rabbit hole. I love them. For me as someone who has a very active imagination, it’s really wonderful to exercise your imagination in that way and really try to picture what’s happening.
A lot of them do a good job at being able to describe the environment or just the sound texture that some of them have. I’m really excited for the sound texture we have in for Aftershock. You really feel in certain moments you are there.
Aftershock is available on Apple Podcasts and wherever you get your podcasts; the first three episodes can be streamed now.
Article content is (c)2020-2021 Brittany Frederick and may not be excerpted or reproduced without express written permission by the author. Follow me on Twitter at @BFTVTwtr, on Instagram at @BFTVGram.