Working with strong and interesting women was the big attraction for Quinta who is the composer for The Exploded Circus.
Contemporary circus company Mimbre bring the show to Worthing’s Pavilion Theatre from Friday, May 18-Sunday, May 20 for its world premiere – a story about human connections.
Quinta recalls: “I worked with the company for the Women of the World Festival in 2014, and I think the female-led element is important for women composers of my political persuasion. I find the feminist stance very appealing, having the emphasis to celebrate women of all different types of female body and also bringing different skill sets in. Sometimes women can get overlooked in different sectors. Mimbre want to make space for all sorts of women to come through. It is great to be surrounded by women who are doing interesting stuff.”
Quinta was commissioned to write the music for the piece by Lina Johansson, Mimbre’s joint artistic director: “There will be a full soundtrack going throughout the show and in addition there is a sound design element where I am using interactive technologies to bring to life various elements.
“Lina has always had a strong idea about the visual element of the show, that moment of explosion and the fall-out from that explosion. That wasn’t fully formed, but she had that strong concept from the start. I knew what she wanted from the music, and the interactive stuff came from me. I am always very keen wherever there is live music for the musicians to be part of the action, part of the mix. For that sort of thing, I want to create an opportunity for them to perform. For this, there are not direct musicians performing in an obvious way, but the circus performers will be at certain points in the show performing the music using electronic devices that I am designing.
“Sometimes with a show the creative director has a really clear idea and can be quite directing. Sometimes you are given a bit more of a free rein. Lina had certain ideas. It is the 250th anniversary of circus, and she thought it would be nice for the music to speak of that legacy of those classic circus tunes. She thought it would be a nice idea, and I agreed. You have to reach a common vocabulary at the beginning of the process. I would send her something and she would tell me what she thought. It was back and forth. She would try things out with the performers and would tell me that I needed to speed it up or make it thinner. You gradually hammer it all out in that way.”
And the excitement is growing as the Worthing date, the premiere, approaches: “Everybody is really, really excited. We have built an enormous rig and all the set is designed and ready. The performers are currently devising. It is all coming together.” 01903 206206
For other stories by Phil, see: https://www.chichester.co.uk/author/Phil.Hewitt2