The Little Mermaid at the British Academy Literature Week

Following on from the successful performances in Liverpool and London for the Being Human Festival 2016, the Liverpool Players have been invited to return to the capital and show their live storytelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic once again. This time it will be courtesy of the esteemed and historic British Academy at their Literature Week 2017,  an event that explores the evolution of literature across time, culture, language and form. Our performance will be on the 20th May at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace.

10_and_11_front_view_(2).jpg

The performance will take place at the British Academy’s headquarters at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace, London.

Late last year we released an audiobook version of our Little Mermaid adaptation and then the standalone soundtrack followed – now available on Bandcamp. It is a retelling that sticks close to the original story and Madelaine Smart’s enchanting performance is bound to be a hit with young children and anyone with a taste for the fantastical. My accompanying orchestral score ebbs and flows throughout the journey, hoping to whisk the audience away to our fictional realm.

Once again this will be a free event, so if you’re in London and looking for a fun and insightful journey into the worlds of classic literature for you and/or some little ones, then hurry and book your tickets for the 20th May 2017!

BOOK YOUR FREE TICKETS ON THE EVENT PAGE

Oh and take a gander at The Liverpool Players new website whilst you’re at it!

15578172_2202360079988451_7786776710558826937_o

The Little Mermaid at The Walker Gallery, Liverpool, for Being Human 2016.

The Little Mermaid – audiobook released

Earlier this year I worked with The Liverpool Players and storyteller Madelaine Smart to create music for their live performance of The Little Mermaid – you can read a bit more about it in my 2016 roundup. We had several great performances at the Being Human Festival launch (for which the show was originally commissioned)  at Senate House, London and at The Walker Gallery, Liverpool, but it looks like there will be more in 2017 as well.

The past week or so, we’ve put together an audiobook version of the performance that’s perfect for kids and parents looking to get lost in the fantastical world of Hans Christian Anderson’s mermaids. We’ve been truer to the original than the Disney version, and there’s something to be said for this adaptation’s messages of selflessness and the pitfalls of being swept up in a wishful fairytale ending. It was great fun writing music to this as the tale treads the lines of innocence, hope and fear very neatly, and I got a bit lost myself in how magical we wanted it to be for our younger audience members – not least in part to Madelaine’s enchanting solo performance.

It’s a totally free audiobook brought to you from the national festival of the humanities – Being Human – and The Liverpool Players, so if you’ve got some little’uns who might enjoy a mermaid tale over the holiday season then give it a listen.

End of 2016 Roundup

I’m back! Though in truth I’ve never really been away. It’s just that proceedings have been disorderly over the past few months because I’ve had limited access to the internet (until now, hooray!) and that’s mostly due to the process of moving house – an arduous affair that had me in limbo far longer than I expected. So here’s a quick round up of everything that’s happened since my last post and what will be happening before the end of the year.

15128946_691159797705191_9052132078374142557_o


A highlight of the year – Glossom playing our London debut at Brixton East, 12.11.16

Continue reading

‘Bisclavret’ phase 2 – The Audio Play

After a successful day of performances on 14th November at The Walker Art Gallery, The Liverpool Players decided to take their production of Marie de France’s Bisclavret one step further and put together an audio-only version of the play. After creating the music and sounds for the live show, I too had been thinking whether these existing resources could be reapplied somehow, so it was a perfect opportunity to try my hand at something new.

When I was younger I used to listen to many stories and theatrical adaptations on cassette tapes lent from our local library (or library lorry). One of their key draws for me was their clever use of sound to create an involving and immersive listening experience. Rather than simply being narrated, these stories were accompanied by effects and dialogue within their appropriate spaces – forests, houses or caves, all kinds of adventure would come to life through the audio alone. This rediscovery of a childhood pastime was doubly helpful considering that the live show had a younger audience in mind, so the audio play could follow suit.

Although all the recording for the dialogue was completed in my studio, I did a lot of work with convolution reverb (like Cubase’s REVerence), which uses impulses responses recorded in real-world spaces to create lifelike recreations of natural reverb. I experimented with impulse responses from stone and wooden rooms of varying sizes to try and give an edge of authenticity to where these characters were supposed to be interacting. I also played with low reverb/high early reflections settings to produce an ‘outdoors’ sound for the forest scenes. All this, in conjunction with modest combinations of sound effects, was to create an overall ‘sound world’ for a play that had not been written with a purely auditory experience in mind. This was a first for me, and a very intriguing production to be involved with – props to Sarah Peverley whose idea it was in the first place.

How do you think it turned out?

CTxslOkWEAAEVHJ

The performances took place in the Medieval and Renaissance area of the gallery, right in front of the magnificent ‘Triumph of Fortitude’ tapestry – originally woven around 1525.