Thursday (August 31st):
Today we (NO, NOT the 3 usual film music nerds - but my mom and me) will travel to London, this time to watch a lesser known (unfortunately) of my big composer-idols: Ms. Debbie Wiseman.
We took of from Denmark to Stansted Airport in the afternoon. This was my fourth time in London, so I knew the city pretty much, but this time I didn't visit much record stores. I even passed Tower Records twice, on the trip, at the Piccadilly Circus, without going in.
We stayed in Strand Palace Hotel, at the Strand. So we were close to the Royal Festival Hall, just on the other side of Waterloo Bridge. The hotel was much better, than Regent Palace, but you had to pay for that. In the evening we bought ourselves ice tea, that tasted terrific, but was so cold it went directly to the brain, giving us both headaches the day after.
Friday (September 1):
This was gonna be our sightseeing day; actually my first. We started off very early on, by underground, to Oxford Street, looking at different buildings and stores. Then a bus to Notting Hill, looking at a different street, with smaller shops. Then we took a bus to Piccadilly Circus, walked to Buckingham Palace, where it was purring rain. Then on to see Downing Street 10, Tower Bridge, a boat tour on the Thames, signing off at Royal Festival Hall again in purring rain.
Saturday (September 2) concert day:
Well we spend the time, until the concert, walking around in Chinatown, Soho, Leicester Square and Covent Garden, all close to the hotel, so we could save money for transport.
Before the actual concert, I tried to figure out how to meet Debbie somehow. I had a loose deal with her manager and webmaster, Tony, that I could get 4 CD covers signed, and make an interview by e-mail. I try to ask some people for Tony, but he didn't seem to be around.
The Concert (7:30 p.m.)
THE GUILTY - Theme (1999 - no CD-release so far)
- I didn't know this score, and all I can remember now, is that
this performed theme sounded great. I hope to enjoy it on a CD
WILDE - Suite (1997 - CD wi(l)dely available)
- This I knew well. Many has this as their favourite score
by Debbie Wiseman, and I must join that group. It's very
lyrical and varied. The theme is so wonderfully melancholy,
fitting incredibly well to the world of Oscar Wilde. Too bad
Debbie didn't get her own Oscar for this genius score.
THE NIGHTING GALE AND THE ROSE (2000 - CD release Nov. 13 2000)
- An 1888 story by Oscar, narrated by actor Nigel Havers with
music composed and conducted by Debbie Wiseman.
Very long suite, with many music intervals between dialogue.
Of course I didn't knew this piece, and it's hard to keep
track of all the very varied music, after only one listening.
So I look forward to the CD-release with narration of actor
In the Interval, I tried again to find Tony, through the Halls
supervisor, who was really helpful, and mentioned "the green
THE SELFISH GIANT (2000 - CD release Nov. 13 2000)
- an 1888 story by Oscar, narrated by actor Nigel Havers with
music composed and conducted by Debbie Wiseman. Again a long
suite, with many music intervals between dialogue, hard to
keep track of, after only one listening. I indeed look
forward to the CD-release with narration of actress Vanessa
Many deserved applause to Nigel Havers. I guess not only for his
performance here, but many people saw a chance here to thank him
for his many other performances on stage, TV and in several films.
LIGHTHOUSE - Theme (1999 - CD available from SilvaScreen)
- This I got on my last London trip in May 2000, so I had enjoyed
the many dark cues in this excellent thriller score.
Debbie told us, that the director was a huge soundtrack collector
himself, and actually sitting among the audience.
WARRIORS - Theme (1999 - CD available in the U.K)
- I actually just bought this cd before the concert, in the lobby,
so I hadn't heard it before. But it sounded very melancholy in
a very listenable way. The cd also contains very moody choirs.
Simply a must for your collection.
TOM'S MIDNIGHT GARDEN - Suite (1999 - CD available late 2000)
- This was fantastic. Varied: romantic, vivid and thrilling.
Just as fantastic as Wilde and Warriors.
THE BIOGRAPHER (2000/2001 - not on CD yet).
- Actually the ink was hardly dry on this score for a new movie
with Faye Dunaway and Paul McGann. Sounded very exciting.
According to the notes in the programme, she's is currently
working on the score for this movie and 3 other movies.
?????????????? (released? I don't think so - sadly)
- Lastly Debbie played a cue, I couldn't recognise, but it was
very vivid and quirky with good use of the complete ensemble
and drums, raising tempos for musically climaxes. GREAT.
After the concert, we try to locate the green room, and with luck. Many of the musicians were in the room packing. I asked the cello player Justin Pearson for Tony. "Aren't you searching for Debbie?", he asked - "Oh, sure".
A couple of people started searching for her, and a couple of minutes later; she came out of her room. Some people congratulated her with the great concert. Suddenly she looked on me and my mom, wondering who we were. I shaked her hand, and with a shaky voice, I think I managed to present myself. Then a man came in from the right side: "Henrik, I'm Tony" - and then everything became so easy.
I got this picture taken with Debbie, and we got invited to the ensembles reception afterwards. And there I got my 5 CD covers signed + my concert programme with love from Debbie. Wow, this night is going to be unforgettable. I will never forget how sweet and kind, both Debbie and Tony was to me.
THANKS to both of you, I hope to meet you again some day.
I was home - back in Denmark - at 8,30 p.m., after my excellent London-trip. I met Debbie Wiseman, attended her fabulous concert (my first with a female conductor) and got 5 CD covers signed. - How much more can I wish for? Now, I have to get ready for Hans Zimmer in Belgium, October 2000.
Henrik - September 6 2000. Last edited: January 7 2001.
Please visit Debbie Wiseman's official page: www.debbiewiseman.co.uk.