wears the trousers magazine

hem to release score to shakespeare play
September 29, 2009, 3:10 pm
Filed under: news, trouser press | Tags: , , ,

290909_hemAnne Hathaway and Audra McDonald sing

It seems we’re a bit behind in finding out about this, but here goes anyway. Exceedingly talented folk-rock band Hem have spent the summer scoring an outdoors production of William Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night, starring Anne Hathaway as Viola/Cesario, Audra McDonald as Olivia and Tony Award-winning actor Raul Esparza as the handsome Orsino, and now they’re going to release a studio recording of said score (at least, in the US). Due October 27th through RCA/Nettwerk Records, Twelfth Night brings the acclaimed original soundtrack into a definitive context with 28 songs featuring the vocals of the original actors rather than the band themselves. The tracklist is a little confusing, featuring as it does such mythical bands as the Illyrian Marching Band and the Gowanus Radio Orchestra, which appear to be various alternative guises of Hem plus musicians from the stage production. Also, some of the songs never actually appeared in the live performance, including the Anne Hathaway/Audra McDonald duet, ‘Full Phathom Five’, inspired by text from another of Shakespeare’s play, The Tempest. “Those two voices together was too tempting to pass up,” songwriter Dan Messé told Billboard recently. “So even though its a moment that never happened on stage it really happens on our album.”

Anyone pining for the lovely vocals of Hem frontwoman Sally Ellyson should take comfort from the fact that, while she takes a backseat here, a new Hem album title Departure & Farewell is due early next year. “We’ve been working on it for two years, it’s our biggest and most ambitious album we’ve ever done,” says Dan. “We’ve made a vow not to do anything else until its finished.”


Twelfth Night
01 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘Illyrian Aire’
02 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘Black Thorn Stick’
03 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘One Self King’
04 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘The Funeral’
05 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘The Rose In The Heather’
06 Illyrian Marching Band feat. Anne Hathaway, ‘Take, O Take Those Lips Away’
07 Hem, ‘Take, O Take Those Lips Away’ [instrumental]
08 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘Not Too Fast! Soft, Soft!’
09 Hem feat. Audra McDonald & Anne Hathaway, ‘Full Phathom Five’
10 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘Sebastian & Antonio’
11 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘The Kerry Polka’
12 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘O Mistress Mine’
13 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘Come Away Death’ [instrumental]
14 Illyrian Marching Band feat David Pittu, Raul Esparza & Anne Hathaway, ‘Come Away Death’
15 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘The Clock Upbraids Me’
16 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘The Little Villain’
17 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘To The Gates Of Tartar’
18 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘Illyrian Aire’ [orchestral]
19 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘Where Is Fancy Bred?’
20 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘Enter Sebastian’
21 Hem, ‘This Is The Air’
22 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘The Bonnie Bunny’
23 Illyrian Marching Band feat. David Pittu, ‘Hey Robin, Jolly Robin’
24 Illyrian Marching Band feat. David Pittu, ‘I Am Gone, Sir’
25 Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘The Bonnie Bunny’ [orchestral]
26 Hem/Gowanus Radio Orchestra, ‘Tempests Are Kind’
27 Illyrian Marching Band, ‘The Wind & The Rain’
28 Gowanus Radio Orchestra/Illyrian Marching Band, ‘The Wind & The Rain’ [reel]

Alan Pedder


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