ALBUM OUT NOW – Giffords Circus’ 2012 show, directed by Cal McCrystal. Composer and musical director Sarah Llewellyn led a 10 piece live band with a toe-tapping and tantalizing score to accompany Giffords’ most glamorous show.
Directed by Cal McCrystal
Music by Sarah Llewellyn
Produced by Nell Gifford
Costumes by Lindsay Pugh
Hair & Make-up by Tabitha James Kraan
Photography by Shadow Play
Album cover design by Made You Look
The 2012 Giffords show, The Saturday Book, a show for all the family, full of laughter, music and world-class circus.
“Pumping, pulsating, growling, ethereal, rhythmical and swinging”
Sarah composed for and conducted the fabulous Giffords Circus 10-piece live band, swinging from Victorian curiosity shops, through jazzy dare-devil acrobatics, to the head-spinning 50s, with tantalisingly toe-tapping tunes.
James Keay – Band leader – Piano, percussion, voice
Beth Schofield – Tenor sax, flute, piccolo, recorder, clarinet, voice
Louise Marsland – Baritone & alto sax, clarinet, flute, voice
Penny Callow – Cello, flute
Gemma Fuller – Trumpet, voice, percussion
Garance Louis – Accordion, voice & percussion
David Insua-Cao – Principle percussion, voice
Those lucky enough to attend witnessed four gravity-defying hand-balancing Ukranians, an elegant young gentleman wire walker, trick riding acts, Ethiopian Jugglers BiBi and Bichu, the jaw dropping dancers Pat & Kate Bradford as well as the eccentric bird charmer Nancy-Trotter Landry. The show stared Tweedy the Clown and was directed by Cal McCrystal whose recent credits include ‘One Man, Two Guvnors’.
“Live music always gives a show extra gravitas and at Giffords the band are not constrained to the background.
As the acts come and go the musicians retain a constant presence and claim their place in the front line of the entertainment. This eight piece out-fit took to the bandstand looking like they had just been refused entry to a Burlesque show for being overly bawdy. The six girls are sassy, sexy, exuberant and deliciously risque with the two males tempering proceedings by providing an air of suited respectability.
The score, put together by Sarah Llewellyn, has a raw sound that gives the show an edge and spontaneity which is lacking in productions that use recorded music. The genre sites somewhere between Spike Jones City Slickers and the Temperance Seven whilst the musical director, James Keay doubles as the shows compere in the style of the BBC’s the Good Old Days’ Leonard Sachs.”
“Best of all, for me, was the band. Everyone seemed to play at least three instruments, and sing, and dance (and tightrope walk, and ride horses…) It was lovely to see loopy Nancy playing the French horn, and the French tightrope walker tucking into the trombone, while the usherettes also pulled out violins on occasion.”
Brilliant music performed by the comical and very talented house band kept the up-tempo pace of the show running throughout. Everything combined beautifully to provide one of the most entertaining family shows I have seen in years.
“…The musical arrangements, costumes, and choreography have reached the peak of perfection…”
Kendra – Gardenista.com
“The band, saucily clad in suspenders and bustiers (the females I hasten to add!) really add to the live and spontaneous enjoyment factor – superb music with a hint of burlesque!”
“…The musical score was a highlight of the entire show, perfectly crafted by composer and musical director Sarah Llewellyn to suit each individual act.”