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COMPOSER/SOUND DESIGNER WANTED for Smugglers, Seafarers, Shantymen (and a lost cow)


Show title: (working title) ‘Smugglers, Seafarers, Shantymen (and a lost cow)’

Performance dates: Weekend of May 28th/29th 2022

Venue: Watchet, Somerset

Fee: to be negotiated, but starting at £4000


Deadline for applications: 5pm on Thursday 11th November 2021

You will be contacted (whatever the outcome) by Tuesday 16th November 2021

Interview dates (in person, Watchet): Friday 19th November 2021


Applicants invited to interview will be given an attendance fee of £25 plus a contribution to travel costs.


How to apply: Apply below!  Submit an expression of interest highlighting your relevant skills/experience, and provide a link to previous work and your CV by 5pm on Thursday 11th November.



‘Smugglers, Seafarers, Shantymen (and a lost cow)’ is a new heritage project being led by Contains Art in Watchet, in association with Wassail Theatre and Onion Collective, alongside a host of community partners and creative practitioners. It’s a celebration of Watchet’s maritime history, and the work will culminate in a performance extravaganza over the weekend of 28th/29th May 2022 in which professional actors will perform alongside community groups and members of the public.


This project is made possible with the support of The National Lottery Heritage Fund. 

We invite submissions from creative practitioners from varying audio/musical backgrounds to take part in this project. Who you are, and what you do, will help us shape this project - so if you’re interested, we’d love to hear from you!


You don’t have to live or work in Somerset, or have a strong local connection to be considered. Having, or being willing to gain an understanding of the socio-economic context of the town and the role of the sea within it will be imperative.


You will be responsible for overseeing the creation of live and recorded sound/music to help the audience experience the stories of the town’s maritime heritage. You will lead on the development of all music/sound related material, and collaborate with the lead artists and community to compose a song that all participants can learn and sing as part of the final performance.  We’ve created a structure/outline story through which the extravaganza could be framed, which you can read here.  


You will be working with Lead Artists Selina Keedwell and Jac Husebo from November 2021 until May 2022. Selina & Jac have written a little about what they are looking for, which can be found below:



Experience with blending styles, supporting and connecting the visual storytelling, to include outdoor spectacle and large-scale community 'happenings'. We are looking for somebody who is a strong collaborator and not afraid to bring experimental sound/music ideas to the table. What happens when Cecil Sharp's Hanging Johnny meets Drum n' Bass, for example? A blend of Watchet's tradition, epic sounds, intimate sounds and found sounds from the Marina, harbour and East Quay. Ideally, this artist will also have experience working with and drawing from the community, leading to a true sense of collaboration and a sense of ownership and familiarity for the participants and our Watchet audience.



We are looking for someone who wants to take risks, someone who is ambitious, playful and fascinated by the world and exploring it. Musically, whether they have knowledge of shanties or folk songs isn’t important, there are so many people working on this with that skill-set, that finding a counter point will create something really interesting. I want this artist to be experimental in their style and natural impulses.  They will need to be very collaborative, progressive and a natural risk taker, happy to make original pieces inspired by the sea, nature and the industrial dirt of a working port, but could also re imagine (for example) a Beyonce song with a male choir.  Nothing is off the table.


I’ve attached some music clips that inspire me in world building of this show, just as a little slice of where my head is at, they are by no means definitive, the feeling of them just influence me.


Lucrecia Dalt – Disuelta

Fever Ray – If I had a Heart

Wardruna – Hagall

Remi Wolf – Quiet On Set

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