Continuing our feature series educating audiences on the importance of musical directors, My Theatre Mates co-founder Mark Shenton interviews musical director and Also Recognised Awards partner Mike Dixon.
A key part of the inaugural Also Recognised Awards is the introduction of the UK’s first-ever prize for Best Musical Direction. To launch this award, My Theatre Mates teamed up with musical director Mike Dixon and director Andrew Keates, who have been lobbying long and persuasively about the need for such an award and the importance of Creative Team Parity.
As part of our feature series designed to enlighten audiences on what musical direction is, Mark talked to Mike Dixon, one of the UK’s most experienced musical directors. In this in-depth interview, find out the answers to these and many other questions about the music in musicals:
- What does a musical director and supervisor do?
- Why have the Tony Awards stopped recognising Orchestration and Musical Direction?
- How do you tell good versus bad musical direction?
- How does your approach as a musical director change with different types of material?
- Which is your favourite show you’ve worked on?
- Why does the musical director stick around after the rest of the creative team have departed?
- Does the musical director get involved in hiring the cast and orchestra?
- Why shouldn’t live orchestras be replaced with recorded music?
- What’s Symphonia? Why didn’t it work?
- What are the challenges with amplification? Can you tell the difference?
- Do musicians in the pit see the show they’re working on?
- How do orchestra contracts differ from actors’ contracts?
- What’s the job of the sound designer? How do they work with the musical director?
- Where do you see the musical director in the theatrical hierarchy?
- What’s the sitzprobe and why is it called that?
- What’s it like performing in front of an audience for the first time?
Which show had the Best Musical Direction in 2014?
The Also Recognised Awards are the first UK theatre awards to give a prize for Musical Direction. The shortlists have been drawn up by the Mates, with Mike Dixon and Andrew Keates. Who will win? You're the judge. Voting closes at midnight on Sunday 19 April 2015.VOTE NOW