"It’s hard to see how this production could be improved on. Festive family theatre rarely gets better than this." Nigel Smith for The Stage
Gosh its taken me a while to catch up this year and finally write up some of fabulous times Ive had working back in 2019 such as my design for Storyhouse Chester's Christmas production Peter Pan pictured above. From September through to December I was also busy designing the season in a tent for Mercury Theatre Colchester who have been taking time away from their theatre whilst its been refurbished. The season called Mercury at Abbey Fields saw a tent housing 800 seats play host to a host of tours & several in house productions including their largest Panto yet Cinderella.
This seems a world ago now what with 2020 being what it is. Here we are in December of 2020 with my last sound design for a theatre show closing 11 months ago! I was lucky enough to have several other productions to work on in 2020 and back in February I system designed and production engineered one of my favourite tours yet. Queen Symphonic was a concert tour with an orchestra and four fantastic vocalists. I was so pleased to be asked to look after this with my rental company dBS Solutions for the UK tour.
I also had a great time looking after Firedance UK tour featuring Strictly's Karen and Gorka. This one was sadly cut short in March along with Anton & Erin & Burn The Floor but both will be back Im certain of it.
Since March Ive been trying to keep myself busy, learning new skills, working on things with the rental company to help us deliver events as efficiently but also its been a great time to spend at home with the family. Ive watched my eldest learn to ride her bike and we've been everywhere on our bikes this summer.
In September I was so pleased to be asked by Bill Elms to head up things technical for the first ever Liverpool Theatre Festival. This outdoor event was to play host to some new work along with some clastic comedy. Im thrilled that we make this happen in Liverpool in spite of everything going on around us and that the event also won the Liverpool Culture & Creativity award.
Since then I have turned my creativity to the audio on some of our lit Christmas trails which have thankfully still been able to go ahead. The only live show I have mixed since the summer was for Russell Watson for a Christmas live stream which was super fun. I had been scheduled to mix Russells UK tours back in May and September both of which moved to next year so it was great to see everyone before Christmas. Sometimes the hardest thing about this year hasn't been not working on live events but its not seeing the people you work with on those events.
With New Year only around the corner I know we all can't help but hope for better things in our work life for 2020. Whilst I do to Im thankful for my family and friends this year. Ive spent more time with them than I ever thought I could which has been fantastic. I know Im ready to hit the ground running in 2020 whenever Im able to. I look forward to some new challenges but also to more family time out in the open air. All the best to all my friends this festive season.