"Read All About It!" featuring Lucy Anne SaleNews
A couple of weeks ago, I was mourning the loss of the former "Coventry Evening Telegraph" building as a venue (though looking forwards to the possibility of a successor being created at the "Elephant" sports centre). However there is still one last chance to visit & catch ground breaking creativity within. From 10th to 14th July, the Belgrade Theatre is taking over the building and hosting two events as "Read All About It!": one of which, "Retold" features a collaboration between Mercurial Dance & local musician Lucy Anne Sale who has been working in the building for several weeks (I was wondering what that unseen music was I could hear on my visits). Lucy has created sounds recorded on site using the distinctive acoustics & these will be used in the performances alongside live performances.
I am grateful to the Belgrade Theatre's Heather Kincaid for the following excerpts of an interview she conducted with Lucy:
"As well as singing, I'm going to be playing live with the piano, guitar and flute, alongside a backing orchestra of pre-recorded music which will involve all of the musical instruments here in the room with me, including the typewriter in the corner," she says.
"The really exciting thing is that I've actually recorded some percussion down in the basement using the old machines there – so all the printing presses and stair rails and things like that have become almost like a drumkit."
"It was an opportunity to write music that came out of discussions with other people rather than purely from inside me, and also a chance to try composing in a different way to how I've composed for the last however many years. I do like new challenges. But also I think the fact that it's a big performance piece in the centre of our city made it feel like a real honour to be asked. I'm really grateful to Mercurial Dance and the Belgrade Theatre for giving me this opportunity, as well as to Alan Denyer for giving me access to this room before he'd even met me!"
"Having this studio space on site is really inspirational because actually being in the building feels quite magical and poignant,"
"Partly that comes from speaking to people who come here and making new friends – lots of the people coming round on tours have come in and given me stories about the building. Also being within a hub of artists has been really good, because it's created a central space for people to meet and discuss ideas."
"There have been some magical things that have happened by coincidence. For example, there was one day when I'd been working on a 20-minute piece of music for a section where the dancers read out birth, marriage and death notices, which is one of my favourite parts of the show."
"I'd just finished and started packing my instruments away, when suddenly the door opened and my backing vocalist's parents walked in. They had no idea I was working there, and when I asked what made them want to visit the building, they explained that one of them used to work there, doing the birth, marriage and death notices! It's all the amazing things like that which make you feel like what you're doing is important."
The other show in "Read All About It", which is called "City Final", sees the Belgrade Theatre youth and community groups take audiences on an exciting journey against a looming deadline, around the cavernous building and through the last 50 years of Coventry life.
For tickets to both shows, please visit http://www.belgrade.co.uk/season/read-all-about-it