Mark R. Bannister
Orchestral & Instrumental
for Film, TV & Theatre
"Do not, as some ungracious pastors do,
Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven,
Whiles, like a puff'd and reckless libertine,
Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads."
Hamlet is a play rich with themes, memorable quotes and
powerful characters; and the production at the Richmond Shakespeare Society in Twickenham,
March 2007 was a faithful interpretation that received rave reviews from audience
and critics alike.
The music began with a representation of
a bell tolling midnight, which gradually morphed into the bell itself heard at the
end of the track. This opened to the eerie battlements scene.
We kept the music sparse throughout the show to add to its simplicity and poignancy, at times
introducing a small section of my Piano Prelude for One Hand, which
wasn't specifically written for the show, but written for pleasure at the same
time, and its themes seemed to fit perfectly.
(MP3 - 1 min 29 secs - 1.20 Mb)
Prelude No. 4 for One Hand, "The River Rapids"
The other difficulty with Hamlet comes in the shape of Ophelia, not that
she is a difficult character, nor the actress who played her difficult to work
with - in fact, Helen Linstead, who deserves a special mention, was remarkably
easy to work with and she pulled off an awe-inspiring performance worthy of an Olivier -
but that she has numerous songs to sing. Shakespeare, in his infinite wisdom,
left us no material, short of the lyrics, to work with. So here is my
musical interpretation, as used in this production, which Helen learned perfectly
and made her own:
And Will He Not Come Again (PDF - 36 Kb)
Bonny Sweet Robin (PDF - 13 Kb)
Dead and Gone (PDF - 47 Kb)
Hey Nonny (PDF - 20 Kb)
To Be Your Valentine (PDF - 60 Kb)