This year, Christmas Eve TV will have a most welcome addition to ease us into the festive feel. Continuing their exploration of Slow TV, the BBC heads to Norway - the country which first brought us Slow TV broadcasts.
Christmas Eve: think snowy landscapes, reindeer, jingling of bells while (hopefully) settling down to a cosy evening. BBC4 will be giving the opportunity to become mindful of such things - even if it's actually to accompany some last minute present wrapping and preparing the vegetables for Christmas dinner...
Over two hours the camera will show the scenery around Karasjok (for the English tongue, pronounced Karra-shock) in the northern Norwegian county of Finnmark. Like All Aboard! The Canal Trip broadcast in April, All Aboard! The Sleigh Ride will use a single camera to relate a continuous steady journey - the subject this time being a winter wonderland by reindeer and sledge.
Originally cited as being filmed in Finland, the announcement that it was filmed in Norway is a surprise - however Karasjok is only fifteen minutes' drive from the border with Finland (one assumes with snow tyres and fair conditions, being 200 miles into the Arctic Circle).
Taking in an old postal route used by the Sami people of northern Norway, Finland, Sweden and the Kola peninsula of Russia, the documentary experience (for that is one way of understanding Slow TV) will add embedded graphics without voice over and verbal commentary or dramatising music to suggest to us how we ought to be feeling as we watch. The information we take from such a documentary is what we draw from the experience of sharing the journey.
Produced by ITV Studios' The Garden Productions, All Aboard! The Sleigh Ride will be broadcast on BBC4 on 24th December - Christmas Eve - from 8pm to 10pm and will hopefully add to the success of the Slow TV productions in the UK earlier in 2015.
For more Slow TV news, see the most recent newsletter.
The Norwegian creators of Slow TV are planning a week long broadcast of live reindeer migration for 2017; for some analysis of this and how it compares with the BBC 2 hour recorded broadcast, see this vlog I recorded back in September.
Ever wondered how Slow TV began? See this clip from a documentary I made about Slow TV:
Slow Television - The Slow TV Blog