Yasmine a Musical

One of the greatest shows I’ve ever seen and the music was the best thing about it

Alex James from Blur

Horses in a circus ring Yasmine Smart performing, photo by Andrew Rees

Giffords Circus’ sell-out production featured Sarah’s swinging original score realised by 12 eccentric and exciting musicians. Yasmine Smart, the Grandaughter of Billy Smart appeared as herself with a breathtaking liberty three horse act.

Circus band playing. Yasmine a Musical Giffords Circus Production photo by Andrew Rees

Producer: Nell Gifford
Director and choreographer: Molly Molloy
Composer & musical director: Sarah Llewellyn
Lyricist: Gaynor Winstanley
Musical assistants: Faith Elliott and Karen Hutt

The Album

‘The whole show is sewn together with a score which was deliciously jazzy and performed by a stupendous band of players and singers. The music was beautiful, playful and pulled you into the magic of the show. We couldn’t help dancing in our seats and it is worth noting you can buy the soundtrack’

Recorded under the big top by Mark Newton and mixed and mastered by Tonal with David Tobin for limited edition signed CDs please get in touch

Stream or Download

Music Credits

Two singers in 40s costume singing at microphone photo by Andrew Rees

Composer: Sarah Llewellyn

Lyricist: Gaynor Winstanley

The Band

Faith Ristic – Band Leader, Piano, Accordion, Percussion & Voice
Francesca Simmons – Violin, Double Bass & Voice
Valentine Chatelet – Trumpet & Voice
Claire Barbier – Voice & Trumpet
Will Buchanan– Drums
Jannah Warlow – Voice & Tenor Sax
Gabor Rosteen – Recorder
Celine Biewesch – Tuba & Percussion
Sam Alty – Double Bass, Guitar & Voice
Jean Goubert – Alto Sax & Ukelele
Julien David – Tenor Sax, Clarinet & Guitar
Michael Buxton – Tenor Trombone

Sarah says

Sarah conducting in rehearsals

The score for this show was inspired by and pays tribute to the swing music of the 40s, the wonderfully irreverent work of the legendary Spike Jones and his City Slickers, the harmonies of the Andrews Sisters and the scat singing style pioneered by artists such as the fabulous Ella Fitzgerald.

Above all, Yasmine Smart provided the catalyst for many of the pieces portraying snapshots of her life and work, as she became a true Queen of the Ring. Special thanks to Gaynor Winstanley for her wonderful words and Karen Hutt for all her contributions to the music.

More of Sarah's work with Giffords Circus

Yasmine a Musical Giffords Circus production poster.

Musical and show highlights

Listen to extracts

Scat Song extracts

Music Box Waltz extract

Love Song to Brian the Goose

The Exploding socks song extracts

Are you Dancing? Extract

Who is She? Extract

Yasmine's Tango extract

Swinging on the High Wire extract

Yasmine overture extracts

Clowning extract

Waiting extract

Chinese Globe extracts

Let's Dance extracts

Sarah conducting in rehearsals
photo by Leah Llewellyn
..the creativity and passion poured into this production is, at first, bewildering.... while most UK touring circuses have abandoned live music, Giffords has an exceptional 12-piece ensemble. Yasmine – a Musical has a fun, concert party feel – with the artists at times sporting glorious animal heads – and some thrilling acts . . . Giffords has created a dream of a show, which would be even more jewel-like after dark

Liz Arratoon, The Stage

Pulling everything together there’s live music from the twelve-piece band—several of whom step into the ring for a duelling banjos stand-off or the odd bit of game transvestism . . . .its very fabric, honours all the best qualities of the circus world. I’ll go back next year

Side Show Circus Magazine