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The Project


Persephone: A musical theatre and film project

A modern, urban musical retelling of the Persephone myth; a search for identity and truth, and the journeys a mother and daughter must take to truly find themselves and each other. 

Scroll down to find out more.

SCROLL DOWN

The Project


Persephone: A musical theatre and film project

A modern, urban musical retelling of the Persephone myth; a search for identity and truth, and the journeys a mother and daughter must take to truly find themselves and each other. 

Scroll down to find out more.

Synopsis

Present day.  High Town, Luton.  The story centres around three teenage girls, Percy, Tash and Lina, who live in High Town.  They are best friends and growing up together, supporting each other and having fun together.  Percy lives with her overprotective mum, who runs the local cafe,  Tash lives with her Dad - her mum has run off to seek her fortune in Vegas - and Lina lives with her sister - who consumed by her wild social life, takes very little notice of her.  When the dashing Will and his son, Harry unexpectedly return to High Town after a fifteen year absence, the girls' world is thrown into disarray.   

 

The Project

 

A collaboration between a thin place and Century Films.  

A feature film, involving local people as actors

Persephone is a feature film musical.  It is a contemporary retelling of the Greek myth, Persephone, and the journey that a mother must make to save her daughter. 

  • It will be filmed entirely in Luton.
  • The cast will be made up of local people - actors, musicians, singers and dancers of all ages and backgrounds.  
  • We are looking for local people to work in all areas of production, such as camera, set design.  
  • We will collaborate with local musicians, to develop the sound track for the film.  The film is a musical and we will draw upon different cultural influences in the arrangements of the songs.  
  • We will involve young people, particularly from local secondary schools and youth groups.
  • We will also involve existing local community groups and singers, such as Luton Gospel Choir and Next Generation Youth Theatre.

 

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The Team


The Team


Associate Producer: Brian Hill

Brian Hill of Century Films is known for pioneering the documentary musical, initially with the Royal Television Society award winning Drinking for England, then the BAFTA-winning Feltham Sings and most recently, the highly acclaimed Songbirds.  He has recently moved into producing drama with the double BAFTA-winning Falling Apart, and the BAFTA nominated Bella and the Boys for BBC2.  They have recently made dramas for More 4, a series of hard hitting dramatic monologues, The True Voice of… They have produced critically acclaimed films for ground-breaking strands, such as BBC’s Modern Times (Saturday Night, Drinking for England), Channel 4’s Cutting Edge (Shot, Men at Fifty), Only Human (Make Me Normal) and ITV’s Real Life (Burglars, the Fattest Men in Britain)

centuryfilmsltd.com 

Producers: ATP community of companies

ATP is a socially minded community of companies that include a production company, creative agency and a social enterprise. They work to bring creative solutions to social problems.  The community has produced everything from music videos, commercial work, documentaries and narrative films. This includes; "The Million Dollar Question", “One” and “Our Farley”.

athinplace.co.uk

Director/composer: Katherine Freeman

Katherine has worked as a filmmaker, producer, composer and teacher.  She also worked, for a number of years in the theatre, as an actor/musician.  She has recently worked for English National Opera, directing and composing the music for a half hour film musical, ‘Giovanni.’ She has also made radio programmes and films, including for, BBC, (I love my nails), Channel 4 (Movie moments) and Granada Television (Art in the Home), South Bank Centre (People of Experience).

 katherinefreeman.org

Head of cinematography:  Nigel Kinnings

After working for five years as an assistant editor at BBC Bristol, Nigel studied lighting camera at the National Film and Television School. While at the NFTS, he was DOP on 'Say Goodbye,' which won the BAFTA for Best Student Film 1989.  Since graduating, he’s been working as a freelance cameraman, working on everything from pop promos to commercials to documentaries, and these have taken him to many far-flung places on the planet. He particularly enjoys working on independent drama productions. Recent films have included being DOP on 'Infidel,' which won the Best UK Short Drama Award at Raindance 2009, co-DOP on 'Treacle Jnr,’ which was joint winner of Best Feature at the Dinard Film Festival in 2010, and DOP on 'Giovanni' for ENO in 2011.

nigelkinnings.com

 

Head of sound:  Malcolm Hirst

Malcolm has a track record for drama and documentary.  He has won a BAFTA for his film sound, on the BBC series, ‘Police.’  He has recorded sound for many feature films, such as ‘All or Nothing’ (Mike Leigh) and ‘Hidden City,’ (Stephen Poliakoff) and ‘Post code wars.’ (Penny Woolcock).  He also recorded sound for Bookaboo - a children’s Bafta award winning series for Happy films in 2009, followed by Four Lions the first feature from Chris Morris and Warp films. In 2010 he worked on Edge, directed by Carol Morley and Selmade - a film by Gillian Wearing.

Sound design/music arranger:  David Chilton

David runs a successful audio production company, Essential Music.   He has won awards for his compositions and sound design and has worked as a studio engineer, editor and composer for a considerable number of projects, including plays and programmes for the BBC and Channel Four.  Clients include: BBC 1, BBC 2, BBC 4, CBBC, BBC Radio 4, Calton TV, Channel 4, Film Four, The Discovery Channel and the History Channel.  David has worked with Katherine on a number of radio and film projects.  For more information on his work and company visit: 

www.essentialmusic.co.uk

 

Choreographer: Sunanda Biswas

One of UK's foremost B-girl'sand founder of 'FLOWZAIC' UK'sfirst all all female Breaking crew Sunanda aka 'sun sun' performed, judged and hosted at some of the biggest Hip Hop and B-boy events from UK B-Boy Championship, Nike Dance Clash to BOTY and B-Supreme women in Hip-Hop festival at the South Bank Centre.

She was co-choreographer for the NHS segment of the London 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony and is now Associate Director of 'Grounded' who gave their début performance at Sadler's Wells Breakin' Convention's 2013 tenth anniversary.

Other credits include: choreographer on the Bafta Award winning film 'Fishtank' working with Andrea Arnold; Mel B, Gabriel and touring with 'Take That' as a featured rapper.

 

 

Volunteer Music Co-ordinator: Teela Hughes

Teela runs the company, Music 24, offering musical experiences to people with disabilities, dementia and mental health issues: allowing growth, discovering identities and encouraging independence. Music 24 offers hands-on support through music to vulnerable adults in a safe environment. Teela is also an accomplished musician and gigs regularly in Luton and the surrounding area.  

 

Assistant workshop co-ordinator: Samone Rafi

Samone is an experienced actress and theatre in education workshop leader, working notably on community projects with Red Ladder Theatre company, Cartwheel Community Arts and Bolton Arts Council.

Editor:  Max Budgett

Max runs a film and animation company with his business partner, Dom - TMax Productions.  He has made films and animations for English National Opera, BBC, CNN, Warner Brothers, Channel 4, to name but a few.  To see his extensive range of work, visit his website:

tmaxproductions.co.uk

 

Business Consultant: Roland Taylor

Roland has worked in the music industry for twenty years as a teacher, lecturer, broadcaster, digital producer and editor. Engaging audiences across multiple platforms has been at the forefront of his work in the past ten years at the BBC, as interactive producer and project manager at BBC Music, as Interactive Editor of BBC Radio 3, the BBC Proms and the BBC's Performing Groups. More recently his work as Director of Digital and Participation at the English National Opera has seen him work with partners including Soundcloud, Sound and Music, Classic Fm, Vimeo, the British Council, the BFI and BBC Radio 3.

 

Volunteer Web Producer: Amish Gir

Amish graduated from Cambridge University.  He recently worked with Athinplace as an intern. There he enjoyed seeing collaborative creative projects ranging from web development, marketing and graphic design briefs from conception to realisation. Being heavily involved with these briefs with the close mentoring of Ian Rowlands (CEO) and the fantastic in-house team he gained an invaluable set of skills in marketing, strategy implementation, working closely with different clients and organisation of briefs to meet all deadlines with confidence and to an exemplary standard. Through Athinplace creative working space he began undertaking web development and marketing strategy and now continues to implement what he has gained on this project. 

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The Values


The Values


 

We believe our project will:

 

  • Be ground breaking and innovative.  We are creating an urban musical, set against the landscape of Luton.  We are putting the skills and talents of local people at the heart of this.  We will use the power of music, creativity and dramatic performance to inspire and transform.  
  • Strengthen the local community, drawing people together to work collaboratively towards a common, creative vision.  
  • Celebrate diversity - providing a vibrant and multicultural platform on which the immense local talent can be utilized and showcased. Bring people from different ethnic groups together in collaborative activities, helping to developing mutual respect and understanding.  
  • Give local people the opportunity to gain new skills and confidence, empowering them and increasing their employability. 
  • Encourage people, from a broad social and educational demographic, to work together and collaborate on a successful and high profile stage musical and film, for which they feel a sense pride and ownership.   
  • Show Luton and all that it has to offer in a positive light, generating great publicity for the area – Marsh Farm and Luton in general.

 

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The Partners


We are currently speaking to numerous organisations and individuals to establish the key partnerships and sponsors, please contact us if you are interested in being involved. 

The Partners


We are currently speaking to numerous organisations and individuals to establish the key partnerships and sponsors, please contact us if you are interested in being involved. 

We will bring as many members of the community together to work in all areas of pre-production, production and post-production, in creative, technical and administrative roles.  

We will work closely with youth groups, schools, and the university and utilize and celebrate what the young people who attend these particular institutions have to offer. We will provide positive activities for local young people, giving them the opportunity to gain and develop new skills. 

We will initially hold auditions, to recruit local people.  The basic story line will evolve through work with the participants and many of the scenes and dialogue will be devised through improvisation.  Songs, which the characters sing, run throughout the musical.  Most of these have been pre-composed, but some will be devised with the actors.  There will also be dance sequences, which relate to the songs and music.  Again, these will be devised with the participants.

 

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Rehearsals


Rehearsals