The Voice Project commissioned me as a rehearsal leader for their project Arms of Sleep a 10-hour immersive overnight experience of choral music, film and animation set in the beautiful grounds of historic stately home Firle Place.
Text by Heathcote Williams, Narration by Roy Hutchins, Arrangement & Musical Direction Kirsty Martin featuring Hullabaloo Quire, Raise the Roof Community Choir and RISE Up Singing.
Poet Heathcote Williams created a beautiful work that explores the various forms in which songs come to us, and the inimitable power that they have. From the bell-like vibrations of the earth to Mothers singing to soothe their children, from protest songs to bird song; The Big Song is a glorious celebration of singing.
I was commissioned to compose a score that would weave through Heathcote’s words, a truly wonderful task to be gifted, and one that I could have done a hundred times over in a hundred different ways. The final composition features Kate Bush’s Sunset intertwined with cosmic rhythms, a pagan chant and a Japanese lullaby, Led Zepplin and much, much more!
The contemporary circus company Circa commissioned me to work as a rehearsal leader for their project Depart. This piece, a modern retelling of the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice, took place at night in Brighton’s Woodvale cemetery and incorporated acrobats, dancers, singers and guides who walked the audience through the performance.
I worked with the fabulous Brighton People’s Theatre composing for Tighten Our Belts, a show that told the real-life experiences of local people affected by austerity.
Under the direction of the wonderful Naomi Alexander, alongside choreographer Gary Clarke and with a multi-talented performance troupe, many of whom had never been on stage before, many of whom were the people who were struggling financially, we collaborated to present everyday accounts of living in poverty through music and dance.
This project was really exciting, important and empowering work.
Click here for a review of the performance.
I was invited to join the Poetry Army as its Choral Director, bringing in choirs from across the UK, including Sheffield Socialist Choir and Red Leicester Choir.
Written by Heathcote Williams Poetry Can F**k Off was a celebration of the power of poetry, the voice it can lend to people facing injustice and oppression. It highlighted the works of poets and orators from Emily Dickinson to Gil Scott-Heron, Gandi to Pussie Riot. My part in the celebrations was to direct the choirs who performed Leon Rosselson’s arrangement of James Oppenheim’s poem Bread and Roses.
Click here for a review of the Brighton performance.
See below for the Poetry Army Trailer.