Paul announces ‘Ocean’s Kingdom’
Marking his first foray into the word of dance, Paul has
announced the general release of ‘Ocean’s Kingdom’, commissioned by
the New York City Ballet. The recording will be released by Decca
Records on October 3rd (UK) and Hear Music/Telarc on October 4th (US)
and is conducted by John Wilson, produced by John Fraser and performed
by The London Classical Orchestra.
‘Ocean’s Kingdom’ is the first time Paul has written an
original orchestral score or any kind of music for dance and is the
result of a collaboration between Paul and New York City Ballet’s
Master in Chief Peter Martins, who have worked together to present the
world premiere of a new ballet for the company’s 2011/2012 season this September.
Though the work is Paul’s first ballet, he approached the
project in the same way he writes all other music, driven by his heart
rather than his head and inspired by feeling rather than specific
technical knowledge. While this may have been another new turn for his
staggeringly varied career to take, Paul knew it had to be influenced
by his own personal experience and that he needed to create a story
the audience would find equally compelling and moving.
Paul’s first step was to visit the Royal Opera House to see
Adolphe Adam’s ‘Giselle’, danced by the Royal Ballet. Afterwards, Paul
met the dancers and discussed the work with them, realising as he did
so that he was still without a central theme to his work. Keen to tell
a story through his music, Paul decided to focus on the purity of the
ocean and within just two months, the first draft had been completed.
He then went through the music again thinking specifically of the
ballet itself, thereby creating a world featuring distinctive
characters and a vibrant underworld kingdom. Finally Paul spent many
more weeks working alongside Peter Martins to refine the work, before
Peter created the choreography with the NYCB dancers.
An hour long score featuring four stunning movements – Ocean’s
Kingdom, Hall of Dance, Imprisonment and Moonrise – the ballet tells
of a love story within the story of an underwater world whose people
are threatened by the humans of Earth. A potently expressive and
richly varied work, the score is Paul’s most challenging and
emotionally complex yet. As he explains: “What was interesting was
writing music that meant something expressively rather than just
writing a song. Trying to write something that expressed an emotion –
so you have fear, love, anger, sadness to play with and I found that
exciting and challenging.”
The premiere of the ballet ‘Ocean’s Kingdom’ will take place
at NYCB’s Fall Gala on Thursday 22nd September 2011 while the release
of the orchestral score will follow a month later, available
digitally, on CD and on vinyl. It was recorded in June in London.
The artwork that accompanies the release is equally striking
and inventive. Though it seems to suggest a city skyline, it is
actually a digital readout of the notes from the ballet score.
Although this is his first orchestral score for dance, Paul is
already quite at home in the world of classical music. His back
catalogue already carries four classical albums, the most recent of
which was the Classical BRIT Award winning ‘Ecce Cor Meum (Behold My
Heart)’; a work for chorus and orchestra in four movements that was
released in 2006.
dance to be released on 3rd/4th October 2011.