Behind the Scenes of Disco! Disco! Good! Good?: A Musical Journey
I am thrilled to share with you the story behind my latest musical composition, "Disco! Disco! Good! Good?" - a piece that explores the impact of technology on the disco era, queer ballroom culture, and the fear of being discovered.
It all started with a small sketch called "Discotheque," which I created in collaboration with the London Sinfonietta as part of the Royal Over Seas League Composition Medal. This sketch captured the essence of the disco era and showcased how music moved from vinyl to tape, transforming the music industry forever. The sketch was well-received, and I knew that I wanted to expand on this idea and create a full piece.
~ Excerpt from workshop with London Sinfonietta, Conducted by Geoffrey Patterson
That's when I partnered with Aaron Holloway-Nahum & the Riot Ensemble to bring my vision to life. Together, we worked on developing the skating into the full work, "Disco! Disco! Good! Good?". I wanted to take the listener on a journey through the disco era and celebrate its cultural impact on music.
We were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to premiere the piece at the Royal Academy of Music's Dukes Hall in March 2023. It was a surreal experience to see our hard work come to fruition and to hear the music performed by such talented musicians.
"Disco! Disco! Good! Good?" pays tribute to the queer ballroom culture that emerged during the disco era. It acknowledges the fear of being discovered that many LGBTQIA+ individuals experienced during this time and celebrates their bravery and resilience.
The piece also explores the impact of technology on music and how it transformed the industry forever. From the shift from vinyl to tape recording, to the rise of digital music production, technology has played a significant role in shaping the sound of music.
As a composer, it was a privilege to be able to create a piece that reflects on such important cultural moments in music history. I hope that "Disco! Disco! Good! Good?" will inspire listeners to celebrate the enduring power of music to connect people and bring joy to our lives.