Prestige for Derry musician invited to London’s ‘Political Mother’ Show

Violin and Viola player Colin Norrby was invited to join the musicians of the Hofesh Shechter Company in both Derry and London. (260713JC7)
Violin and Viola player Colin Norrby was invited to join the musicians of the Hofesh Shechter Company in both Derry and London. (260713JC7)

A Derry violinist and viola player who took part in Hofesh Shechter Company’s colossal show ‘Political Mother’ earlier this year was lucky enough to be invited to London’s Saddler’s Wells to perform again with the world-renowned dance company.

26 year-old Colin Norrby, from Leenan Gardens in Creggan, was one of twenty supremely talented local musicians selected to perform at the dance spectacular when it was staged at Ebrington back in March. The Derry contingent joined ten professional musicians from Hofesh Shechter Company and, together, they created one of the most mesmerising soundtracks this city has ever heard.

Colin was certainly surprised to hear from the Company again.

“One of the string players in the Hofesh Shechter Company wasn’t able to perform in the show in London so I was lucky enough to be invited to fill the gap,” Colin tells the ‘Journal’, “I must have left a good impression in the Derry show!”

There were five performances in London earlier this month, with Colin playing viola on all of them.

He says it’s possibly the last time that the Hofesh Shechter Company will perform Political Mother. “They’ve performed it hundreds of times now and so Hofesh felt he should put it to rest, at least for a while, and put his creative efforts into a new piece.”

Safe to say, the audiences loved every minute. “The performances were in Saddler’s Wells, a world-renowned dance venue, and every night was packed out. Unsurprisingly, they went down a storm and the audience applauded down to the bones of their hands,” he recalls.

Were there any differences to performing in his hometown? “It was a slightly different experience to the Derry shows,” Colin reflects.

“I suppose I felt more like a pro in the sense that I was there to do a job and then go home, which I say in the best way possible. In Derry, of course we were there to do a job, but the whole atmosphere of having so many friends and fellow Derry-heads there felt like an adventure! Though a few of them actually came to see the show in London too. I would love to actually SEE the show myself!”

“I loved that I could do the piece again,” Colin added.

“Genuinely, the piece is a real and unique experience and it’s an important one as it’s not easy to get people to think or care about issues like oppression and freedom.

“For people in Derry, these ideas really mean something but they are usually ill-represented by the media, and so it is better when it’s sparked by something creative. Political Mother did that for a lot of people.”