Right from the get-go, the composer Scott Wilkinson made no bones about this story’s breadth: “This is a big, challenging project. Think ‘Les Misérables’ meets the Third Reich.” Well, I thought “Les Misérables” meets the Third Reich, and I told him by return of mail, “I wanna get in on the ground floor of that!”
That was back in July 2015. I did an extensive amount of research and started writing at the end of August. The scenes just flowed. Of course, by the time of the first rewrite many of them were cut, but I’d rather be spoiled for choice than have to scrape around for material.
My job was made a lot easier by the songs Scott had already written for the show. (He’d been working on it for two years by the time I joined up.) They were deliciously varied, skilfully written and constituted the perfect tent poles for me to stretch my canvas over.
Similar to “R | The Opera”, work on this project was made a lot easier by the collaborators’ lively email correspondence. Not only can writing be a lonely business, but there’s also a big danger of setting off in a direction different to the one required. The constant back-and-forth of mails was a great way of keeping me on the straight-and-narrow. A great boon!
More information about the show can be found here: Bonhoeffer the Musical.