A LOCKDOWN collaborative creative project has become a professional audio musical podcast starring well-known performers.
Lydia Shaw, from Ringwood, is a professional performer and was an integral part of the local theatre scene.
Following her degree, Lydia went to the London School of Musical Theatre.
But like many of her artistic peers, she struggled during Covid-19 pandemic.
To keep the creative fires burning, she began a collaborative project with her friend Edward Court who was also in the industry.
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Lydia said: “It was a type of therapy, I think. It all happened over the phone, we probably spoke about it every day for two hours and tried to work our ideas into a musical.
“I wrote the story and lyrics and Edward wrote the music.”
They kept their idea around female empowerment and the suffragettes.
Lydia said: “There can be a lot of resistance when working on this type of subject, so we tried to take it out of reality and make it exciting.”
The theme centres around an island and uses female birds to convey feminine feelings and experiences and the birds are frustrated.
They are not allowed to fly and feel held back by society.
On just one day of the year, the birds can be their true selves but one bird decides to make a difference.
Lydia said: “We founded a new genre, creating audio, similar to a book, but it is an audio drama too, and with a musical underscore.”
The show features Debbie Mcgee and a cast of West End stars from shows such as Wicked, Phantom, Bonnie & Clyde, Jersey Boys, Priscilla and Mary Poppins.
All of the actors recorded their segments from home and Lydia set up a fundraiser so all the actors could be paid, but they both wanted to make the product accessible and free to the public.
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Aimed for age seven and above, Lydia feels it will resonate in different ways to listeners.
She said: “It is a little like the Matilda story and will be fun for the young and there is plenty for them to get their teeth into but there is even political satire too for adults.”
Composer Edward Court added: “We wanted to write something that families can enjoy together, so there’s something for everyone – with plenty of music and fun for kids and some thought-provoking, contemporary themes for the grown-ups.
“It was something that kept us creative and hopeful during the pandemic and we hope this project can be equally uplifting for our listeners.”
The new musical ‘Hatched’ is available on Spotify and Apple podcasts on Easter Sunday, April 9.
It will be released in nine episodes with the rest of the show and an album to follow later this year.