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Music for the play “The Man Who” by Peter Brook

Directed by Grainne Earley at The Theatre, 17th March 2010

Jazz Heritage Wales collaborated with Performing Arts student Grainne Earley on her directorial graduation play The Man Who by Peter Brook. The play,

inspired by Oliver Sack’s collection of case histories about the neurologically impaired “The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat”, explored the human

condition as a journey through the mind negotiating its missing links.  After discussions with Grainne we settled on pieces by Thelonious Sphere Monk and Annie Ross, as well as the two pieces mentioned in the text;  a Japanese folk song and a piece by Erik Satie.  These pieces were rehearsed and recorded for the production and played live prior to and after the performance.

The pieces chosen reflected the mood and dynamics of the play

Three pieces are by Thelonious Sphere Monk (1917-1982) who was renowned for his dissonant harmonies and angular melodic voicings. He combined percussive attacks with abrupt, dramatic use of silences, similar to Harold Pinter the dramatist. Some believe Monk's quirky behaviour and unorthodox piano playing was due to an unspecified mental illness that worsened in the late 1960s. Monk was hospitalised on several occasions.

Erik Satie (1866-1925) described himself as a "phonometrician", meaning "someone who measures sound".

Annie Ross (1930-) Her singing style was known as "vocalese" which involved setting her original lyrics to instrumental solos.

Entry: Blue Monk by Thelonious Sphere Monk
Visual Agnosia: Misterioso by Thelonious Sphere Monk
Ticker: Be-bop Rant, Improvised
Japanese Songs: Sakura, Japanese Folk Song
Broca's Aphasia: Trois Gymnopédies by Erik Satie
Jargon: Well You Needn't by Thelonious Monk, lyrics by Mike Ferro
Exit: Twisted by Annie Ross, from a saxophone solo by Wardell Grey

Musicians
Piano Jen Wilson, Sax/Flute Deborah Glenister, Vocals Elissa Evans