Songs. Lots of songs!
Since 2003 I have been writing and performing songs. My formative years were spent touring the UK & Ireland as frontman of Dublin alt-rock band Fifteen Minutes.
In late 2010 I joined forces with Freedom 35s’ Gordon Lee as Fathers Of Western Thought. From January 1st until December 31st 2011 FOWT wrote, recorded and uploaded online a song for every single day - 365 in total. The project, ‘Sons Of Western Thought - The Art Of Songwriting’, was displayed as a multimedia exhibition @ The Market Studios, Dublin in February 2012.
The British Council awarded the title ‘Soundtrack Of Contemporary Dublin’ to the song ‘Dublin’ (March 21st 2011, 80 of 365).
The first step into the world of musical interpretations of literature began in 2012 with FOWT’s ‘Re:Joyce - A Modern Musical Interpretation Of James Joyce’s 4 Major Works’. Serialized weekly online by The James Joyce Centre the project culminated with 4 performances - Dubliners, A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Man, Ulysses & Finnegans Wake - over 4 consecutive nights @ Bloomsday Festival Dublin 2013.
In 2016, Joyce Museo Trieste commissioned FOWT to write a new musical interpretation of Joyce’s Ulysses, this time specifically for the ‘Sirens’ episode. ‘The Endlessnessnessness’ was performed @ 2016 Bloomsday Festival Trieste (Italy).
In the midst of the Joycean adventures with FOWT, I began writing musical interpretations of Shakespeare from 2015 onwards. Starting with Othello, using only the original text for lyrics, each scene was turned into a song from an important character(s) perspective.
After a brief period of listening to the finished recordings of Othello I noticed how easy it was to memorize important lines and scenes - particularly when listening to all 15 in sequence - and I thought this could be very beneficial to students studying Shakespeare. In late 2015 the first version of Literature Through Music was born! I would spend the next 2 years touring schools all over Ireland performing musical interpretations of Othello, Romeo & Juliet, King Lear & Hamlet.
I moved to Prague in late 2017, took a break from Shakespeare and worked on musical adaptations of John Keats’ poetry.
Spring 2018, John Keats’ House Museum in London was the venue for a performance of the finished project.
Summer 2018, in collaboration with the Franz Kafka Society Prague, I wrote and performed a musical adaptation of Franz Kafka’s ‘Letter to Father’.
Autumn 2018, I moved to Edinburgh and started re-writing my musical interpretation of Romeo & Juliet.
This became Romeo & Juliet: One-Man Musical and premiered as a full-run (21 shows) @ Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2019.
Autumn 2019, as the latest edition of Literature Through Music I am organizing a tour of UK schools in 2020, to promote the release of the recorded album, Romeo & Juliet: The Musical (which features the vocals of Aine Stapleton on female roles). Within each school I will perform songs from the album and intermittently talk to students about each scene, themes that arise and my thought-process behind every song.