Published: 23 July 2019

Department of Music and Media and GSA alumni collaborate for G Live musical

Graduations last week saw alumni from Surrey’s Department of Music and Media and Guildford School of Acting return to Stag Hill campus, to rehearse for their first major musical ahead of its debut at G Live next week.

George Stroud, who graduated with a Creative Music Technology, BMus (Hons) in 2017, has written Halls with Jennifer Harrison, who graduated from GSA with a Theatre and Performance, BA (Hons) degree in 2018.

Part of the Guildford Fringe Festival 2019, Halls follows the journey of eight very different first year university students, all brought together as they’re allocated the same halls of residence - Flat 15B. With eight diverse personalities all trying to find their feet, whilst living under the same roof, love will blossom, tears will be shed, the pressures of student life will stifle, but good times will be abundant.

The production is testament to how the working relationships forged at Surrey can endure past graduation and form the beginnings of long-lasting professional collaborations. Chris Elmslie (also 2017 Creative Music Technology alumni) has aided arrangements/music production and current creative music technology student, Ben Tomalin, is musical director. The cast is exclusively comprised of GSA final-year students and theatre and performance graduates.  

George says: ‘Returning to Surrey on graduation day feels like we’ve come full circle. Halls begins in the run up to Freshers’ Week and explores how the eight characters grow, change and interact over that first year’.

Chris Wiley, Senior Lecturer in Music, commented: “"To have written a musical theatre show and be bringing it to the stage is a truly fantastic achievement, as well as a timely reminder of the wonderful opportunities for lasting collaboration that university enables."

Halls has its debut in G Live (Bellerby Studio) on 23 and 24 July.

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