I Capture the Castle

I Capture the Castle
I Capture the Castle based on the novel by Dodie Smith Book and lyrics Teresa Howard music Steven Edis

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Clive Paget

In my quest to get feedback on the new show I emailed my old mentor and director from 'Possessed', Clive Paget. Clive now lives in Sydney, Australia. It was very good to feel connected to him again even though he lives so far away and he has agreed to read the book and listen to the new songs. He hasn't read the novel that the musical is adapted from, but perhaps this is a good thing, on first reading, because his judgement of the show, as a musical standing on its own, won't be clouded by the foreknowledge of the book.

Before Clive went off to work in Australia he was the Musical Theatre Consultant at the National Theatre, providing a link between the National Theatre Studio and Greenwich Theatre, where our first showing of 'Possessed' was staged.

Friday, 26 February 2010

Librettists Workshop

I have joined the Librettists Workshop, which runs throughout the Spring at the Actors Centre. It is being funded by the Really Useful Group, the Arts Council and MMD. The group is being run along the lines of the BMI Lehman Engel workshop in New York and for this season it is focusing on form, structure and characterisation. Later we hope to use the group as feedback on work in progress.

There was a really eclectic mix of people in the group, from all areas in the musical theatre scene. There were also producers and artistic directors, hoping themselves to find out more about the craft of the librettist.

I left with a copy of the libretto of West Side Story under my arm, for a first assignment in deconstruction. The most important words I carried away with me were:

The leading character must be active and not passive
There should be a sense of unity in the "world" of the show
The ticking clock - where a character has to achieve something in a certain time builds tension
The leading character has to fanatically want something tangible and non-tangible and we have to be routing for them more than in a stage play
We need to see through the eyes of the characters

I think I knew all these things but it is good to be reminded about them, especially in the middle of writing something new. It is very easy to get lost in the world of your own book and essential to stand outside, look at it with fresh eyes and say "am I doing all the right things dramatically".

Monday, 15 February 2010

Peter Polycarpou

Steve and I have arranged for a recording of the first few songs of the new show on 2nd March. Peter Polycarpou has managed to find some time in his very busy schedule to sing for us. He played the part of Topsy (William Morris) in the Greenwich Theatre showcase of our musical play Possessed. Peter is fantastic to work with on a new show, having created a lot of musical theatre roles in the past. He gives so much in the workshop/rehearsal process and is such a positive person to work with. We have known each other for so many years, it will be lovely to see him again and catch up.

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Too Late!

Sadly, the submission date for the NMN Haiti Appeal show has long passed and although they really liked Hold Still, they felt it would be unfair to others if we were included - totally understand this and really hope the show goes well.

Monday, 8 February 2010

SNAPPY TITLE

New Musicals Network to launch with charity cabaret Snappy Title, a charity cabaret evening featuring West End performers, will launch the website of New Musicals Network on Sunday 20th September at the Pigalle Club, Piccadilly. The evening, which will showcase songs from new musicals, will be compered by songwriters George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The eleven artists lined up include current and former cast members of shows such as Wicked, We Will Rock You, Avenue Q, Les Misérables, Dirty Dancing and Spring Awakening. All artists appear subject to work commitments. This event takes place at the Pigalle Club, Piccadilly.

I have submitted one of the songs from Possessed "Hold Still" to NMN to see whether they would like to include it in the show and have now joined NMN.

Friday, 5 February 2010

RECORDING NEW SONGS

Steve and I are booking a recording session at Lynwood Studios for some of the songs for the new show, including the title number which we wrote while working at the Academy.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Walter Van Dyk at Kings Place

Walter van Dyk, who played Gabriel in our showcase of Possessed at Greenich Theatre, is appearing at Kings Place with the Dante Quartet on 19th February at 7.45.

This wonderful new music and art venue is transforming King's Cross.