Champs Hill Records recently released a CD featuring the legendary Sir John Tomlinson, Counterpoise and myself. It is the culmination of a project that is very dear to my heart; the life and music of Alma Schindler Mahler Gropius Werfel. The first half of the CD includes most of the musical items from the first half of our live programme, 'The Art of Love', with songs by Zemlinksy, Alma and Gustav Mahler, Webern and Wagner, which prepare us for the emotional storm of John Casken's Kokoschka's Doll, a one-man melodrama. It is from the point of view of a rather tormented Oskar Kokoschka, the artist who had a tumultuous affair with Alma.
One of the songs by Alma, despite being written in 1899, only recently came to light. The autograph manuscript of the song, 'Einsamer Gang - Lonely Walk', is in the Kislak Center at the University of Pennsylvania and I was given the honor and privilege to give the UK premiere of it in 2018 accompanied by the formidable Iain Farrington. The choice and setting of the text by Leo Greiner is about a lonely walk through the fields, reflecting Alma's intense loneliness and unhappiness at the time of her composition. I believe that is also laced with hope, something which we all need to hold on to right now.
During these unprecedented times, the way in which we experience classical music is having to change and evolve. Music videos have long formed an integral part of Pop Music culture, so why not Classical Music as well? I was recently inspired by some sketches posted on social media by the designer Simon Bejer, someone I have had the great pleasure to work with in the past and whose work I have since admired. I have also approached a Leicester-based animator, Steff Lee, who is prepared to take on the project, providing I can get the appropriate funding. Our aim is to offer something special and unique to the virtual world and inspire generations from across the spectrum.
Breakdown of Cost:
Animation - approx. £2000 per minute; 3 minutes in total = £6000
Original Sketches & Drawings (an estimated total of 15 detailed images @ £200 each) = £3000
Please support this exciting project if you can!