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Local musicians record festive 'Elf' song for Christmas

By Philippa Davies

25th Dec 2020 | Local News

A locally well-known musical director has masterminded a festive video of 'A Christmas Song' from Elf The Musical - with all the performers having recorded their parts individually.

The video has been posted on YouTube with the description: 'Something to cheer in what is a very difficult and different festive season this year'.

Its producer, Jeremy Rawlings, has worked with Sidmouth Musical Theatre and Centre Stage in Exmouth. He also has his own production company, EX3 Productions, which staged Aspects of Love at the Manor Pavilion Theatre in 2018.

After this year's first lockdown came into force, with theatre and musical shows cancelled, he produced a video of a vocal and orchestral performance of Somewhere Over the Rainbow, with some of the musicians and musical theatre actors who would normally have been appearing in local shows.

Later this year he decided to follow it up with a Christmas song.

He said: "As we were getting closer to Christmas I thought I should do something, and the Elf song just seemed absolutely perfect."

The video features local singers and musicians, including trombonist Chris Holland who is also Sidmouth Town Council's clerk.

Stephen Weller, who has performed in the West End, sings the part of Buddy the Elf.

Jeremy said putting together a video of this kind is not an easy task.

It involved everyone sending him their individual parts, recorded against a backing track with a 'click' track to keep them all in time.

He said: "I mix the audio track, I then strip the vocals out and I mix that against the orchestral track, and then all that gets put into a piece of software for the video editing and then I edit the video on top of the audio track. And then obviously I put the graphics in and the transitions, so it's a fair amount of work, but as it's my second or third one I was a bit quicker this time."

Jeremy is hoping people who enjoy the video will donate to a music or theatre based charity, as they have suffered such hardship during the Covid-19 crisis. He suggests the following:

Acting for Others

Theatre Support Fund

Help Musicians

Keep the Company Singing, a GoFundMe page for Centre Stage.

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