The Wire


Circuit des Yeux scores soundtrack to Salomé

The 1923 film adaptation of the Oscar Wilde play was produced by Alla Nazimova, who also played Salomé, and directed by her partner Charles Bryant

Haley Fohr aka Circuit des Yeux has written a new soundtrack to the cult 1923 silent film Salomé. Based on the Oscar Wilde play of the same name, it retells the story of King Herod's lust for his stepdaughter and subsequent killing of John the Baptist, and was produced by Russian actor Alla Nazimova. Shot in black and white, it matched Aubrey Beardsley’s original illustrations in the printed edition of Wilde's play, and featured costume design by Natacha Rambova.

At the time Nazimova struggled to get the film released due to its controversial storyline and rumors of homosexuality on set. Kenneth Anger later stated that Nazimova had employed an entirely homosexual cast in homage to Wilde. In recent years it has been marked as one of the first art films made and was put to DVD in 2006.

Fohr's score was commissioned by Opera North Projects and will be performed by the musician and her band for the first time at Howard Assembly Room, Leeds on 12 May as part of Leeds International Festival 2018. Previous commissions by the Opera North soundtrack series have included G W Pabst's Pandora’s Box (starring Louise Brooks) by Hildur Guðnadóttir, Philip Jeck, and the late Jóhann Jóhannsson, and a Gamelan soundtrack for Lotte Reiniger’s The Adventures Of Prince Achmed. Tickets are £13 and available via the box office.