The Chemical Brothers’ Tom Rowlands to compose original music for Life of Galileo

Life of Galileo 

by Bertolt Brecht

direction Joe Wright

Saturday 6 May – Saturday 1 July

Main House

The Chemical Brothers’ Tom Rowlands reunites with director Joe Wright to compose original music for Life of Galileo at the Young Vic

Run extended through to Saturday July 1 2017

BAFTA winner Joe Wright’s production of Brecht’s masterwork Life of Galileo will be accompanied by an original score composed by Tom Rowlands, founding member of the English electronic music duo The Chemical Brothers. Joe and Tom first collaborated on the 2011 feature film, Hanna.

Quote from Tom Rowlands:
When Joe approached me with the idea I was excited at the thought of doing something totally new. I was also happy to rekindle my creative collaboration with Joe as he always makes something inspiring and stimulating.”

Galileo uses the newly invented telescope to make ground-breaking discoveries about the planets that set him on a collision course with authority. In challenging the idea that the earth is the centre of the universe, he is challenging the all-powerful Roman Catholic Church. Brecht’s timeless play about the conflict between science and dogma is more topical today than ever before.

Performed in-the-round, Life of Galileo will transform Young Vic’s Main House with design by Lizzie Clachan and projections by 59 Productions. The full cast is: Ayesha Antoine, Jason Barnett, Brendan Cowell, Billy Howle, Paul Hunter, Joshua James, Bettrys Jones, Alex Murdoch, Brian Pettifer, Anjana Vasan and Sarah Wright.Extra performances have been added to Life of Galileo with the run extending through to Saturday July 1.

Tom Rowlands is perhaps best known as one half of The Chemical Brothers, an electronic music duo formed with Ed Simons in 1992 and described by NME as “one of the most important groups in dance history”. Some of their biggest hit singles include: Hey Boy Hey Girl, Galvanize, Setting Sun, Go and Block Rockin’ Beats. To date, they have released eight studio albums, won four Grammy Awards, had six UK Number One albums and sold-out some of the world’s largest arenas. In addition to writing the soundtrack to Hanna, which won a Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Music Score in 2011, The Chemical Brothers’ work is also featured on Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan.

Bertolt Brecht was born in 1889 in Augsburg, Germany. He grew to maturity as a playwright in the twenties and early thirties and wrote such plays as Man Equals Man, The Threepenny Opera and The Mother. He left Germany when Hitler came to power in 1933, eventually reaching the United States in 1941, where he remained until 1947. During this period of exile, he wrote Life of Galileo, Mother Courage and Her Children and The Caucasian Chalk Circle. Shortly after his return to Europe in 1947, he founded the Berliner Ensemble and produced his own plays there until his death in 1956.

Brendan Cowell’s theatre credits include: Yerma (Young Vic); The Wild Duck (Barbican, UK tour, Vienna and Amsterdam tour); Once in Royal David’s City, Miss Julie (Belvoir, Sydney); The Dark Room (nominated for Best Actor at the Sydney Theatre Awards, Company B); True West, Dissident, Goes Without Saying (Sydney Theatre Company) and MEN (Old Fitzroy). His film credits include Last Cab to Darwin, Broke, Beneath Hill 60 (nominated for Best Actor in a Feature Film, Australian Film Institute Awards); Noise (winner of Best Actor in a Feature Film, Film Critics’ Circle Awards). His television credits include: Brock, The Let Down, The Outlaw Michael Howe (also written and directed); The Borgias (Series 3) and Love My Way (nominated for Outstanding Performance by an Actor, ASTRA Awards, Most Popular TV Actor, Silver Logie Awards and Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series, TV Week Awards as well as contributing several episodes over three series). Credits as a writer (UK) include: Happy New (Trafalgar Studios), Rabbit (Frantic Assembly UK tour), The Slap (nominated for a BAFTA and Emmy Award).

The Jerwood Assistant Director working with Joe Wright on Life of Galileo is Taio Lawson. The role is supported by Jerwood Charitable Foundation through the Jerwood Assistant Directors Program at the Young Vic.

Life of Galileo by Bertolt Brecht, translated by John Willett and directed by Joe Wright runs 6 May – 1 July 2017 in the Young Vic’s Main House. Music is by Tom Rowlands, design by Lizzie Clachan with projections by 59 Productions, light by Jon Clark, sound by Tom Gibbons, puppet direction by Sarah Wright and movement by Javier de Frutos. Casting is by Julia Horan CDG.

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