Welcome to MYRA MUSIC The official site of Nigel Hess
Two new productions for the Royal Shakespeare Company
Nigel has returned to the Royal Shakespeare Company to score two new productions of Love's Labour's Lost and Much Ado About Nothing (or Love's Labour's Won). Both shows see Nigel reunited with director colleague Christopher Luscombe (Shakespeare's Globe The Merry Wives of Windsor and Nigel's own Admission: One Shilling). Both shows opened in the RSC's main theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon on October 15th to 5-star reviews and continue to play until March 2015. They will also be screened live in cinemas on February 11th and March 4th.
'The Knight of the Burning Pestle' at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Shakespeare's Globe
Nigel's latest theatre score for Shakespeare's Globe was 'The Knight of the Burning Pestle' in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Directed by Adele Thomas, it was the second production of the new theatre's first season, and received rave reviews. The show returned for a sell-out Christmas run in December and January.
'Admission: One Shilling' in London, Chicago and Australia
Admission: One Shilling was first performed by legendary actress Patricia Routledge and international concert pianist Piers Lane in 2009 as part of the annual Dame Myra Hess Day at London’s National Gallery. The production tells the extraordinary story of how concert pianist Myra Hess founded and organized a six-year series of morale-boosting, spirit-lifting lunchtime concerts at the National Gallery throughout the darkest days of the Second World War.
Devised by Nigel Hess (Myra's great-nephew), the story, related in Dame Myra’s own words, tells how the “great adventure” of those 1600 concerts began and how they continued while the Luftwaffe’s bombs rained down on London.
Patricia and Piers have now performed Admission: One Shilling nearly 70 times around the UK, Europe and Australia (where it has just completed a sell-out 26-date tour), and January 2013 saw the first USA performance in Chicago with Lesley Nicol (Downton Abbey's Mrs Patmore) and Inna Faliks sharing the performing honours. Nigel was in Chicago to direct the piece. The most recent London performance of Admission: One Shilling was at the Wigmore Hall where it played to a capacity house.
'Thames Journey' on BBC's Best of British Music Playlist
Every day in 2014 the BBC is adding to its Best of British classical music playlist, including recommendations from Radio 3 Breakfast listeners, and on March 19th Nigel's Thames Journey was added to the list. Works are being added on Spotify as they become available so you can follow the playlist throughout the year.
Never out of Classic FM's Hall of Fame since their respective releases, 2014's chart saw Nigel's acclaimed film score Ladies in Lavender rising 11 places from 2013's position to number 85, while his Piano Concerto came in at number 182 (up 64 places from 2013's chart). Ladies in Lavender also clocked in at number 13 in CFM's 2014 Movie Music Chart (up 2 places from 2013).
"Nigel Hess' main theme for this 2004 film starring Maggie Smith and Judi Dench is simple and beautiful. Performed by award-winning violinist Joshua Bell and the Royal Philharmonia Orchestra, it is one of the most enduring film scores of recent years." (Classic FM)
"As modern piano concertos go, Nigel Hess' has to be one of the most revered. Originally commissioned by the Prince of Wales as a tribute to the memory of the Queen Mother, it has since been recorded by the likes of Lang Lang — testament to its status as a performers' concerto." (Classic FM)
Nigel's latest CD New London Pictures, released in April 2013, was Classic FM's 'CD of the Week'. Nigel's music for Symphonic Wind Orchestra is performed by bands worldwide, and this new CD features 12 tracks performed by the Central Band of the RAF, one of the premier military bands in the UK today, conducted by the composer. Works include New London Pictures, Ladies in Lavender, The Lochnagar Suite, Monck's March, Shakespeare Pictures and A Christmas Overture.
"Thank God the days are gone when we have to apologise when a contemporary composer is writing a tune. Nigel Hess writes good tunes, and this is a terrific CD. Please don't hesitate." (David Mellor, Classic FM)
"It's a cracking album!" (Alan Titchmarsh, Classic FM)