Let The Healing Begin
Now, even the cameraman has to pack down his tripod, so we get a slightly disconcerting view of the rapidly deconstructing performance. The audio is also just from the hand-held camera, so we are very much ‘in the room’ with no enhancement…
As a student, I was introduced to theatre by the amazing director Andy Burden. We became close friends and when he moved back to his home city of Bath, I visited him regularly. As well as directing, Andy also wrote and performed songs. Together, we played many of Bath and Bristol’s most popular venues and I realised this was somewhere I would be happy to live.
A few years later, I moved to Bath – together with my wife – and quickly became established within the local creative scene. When we then started a family, some friendships became a little overlooked. As a parent, you inevitably have to re-prioritise and it can be difficult to find time and energy to socialise.
So, even though we now lived within the same city, Andy and I saw less of one another and our gigging together was curtailed. Fast-forward a few years and now we are in the era of social media. One day, Andy posted that a lump had been found on his neck. It was thought to be a benign tumor but turned out to be cancer.
There followed a period of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Andy was hit hard by these but, when I visited him, he still managed to play host, rather than ‘the patient’. Eventually, he posted on social media that the treatment was over: “they’ve cut me, they’ve burned me’ they’ve poisoned me”, he wrote; “Now, let the healing being!”
It struck me that this sounded like one of Andy’s songs. Beneath his post, friends and family had written all sorts of beautiful and moving comments. So, I set about creating a song, in the style of Andy Burden, using both his words and those of his loved ones.
And here it is…