Music For The Changing Voice
Music For The Changing Voice was initially created by Alyssa Wright as an ArtsLocal project for Talk Is Free Theatre in 2017. It received its world premiere with Talk Is Free Theatre as part of its 2018/19 season, with Rae Smith directing, sets and lighting by Joe Pagnan.
It is a show about finding beauty in the broken, and a voice to oppose the silence.
"When my grandfather died, I inherited his cello – the first one I ever heard or played – which came to me shattered in many pieces, uplayable and unfixable. Which kind of mirrors the other thing I inherited from him: the legacy of intergenerational interpersonal trauma.
"When I brought my grandfather's broken cello to the luthier and asked him what I could do with it, he shrugged and suggested "make art" – so I've chosen to do that with the other part of my inheritance as well!"
Performing her original songs, music she was raised with, and even some tunes by the late Don Wright himself, Alyssa weaves together a tale about growing up in his musical shadow and under his silencing oppression – then eventually using the cello and the other tools she’d inherited to find her own voice, heal from the past, and turn even the most shattered bits into art.
Music For The Changing Voice explores some of the complex family dynamics that can arise around childhood sexual abuse, and gives hope and encouragement to those struggling to find their voice. It can be performed in a professional theatre, but can easily be taken to schools, community centres, or other locations – in partnership with The Katie Project, we are hoping to help reach those who most need to hear this message.
"The way you accessed your vulnerability and helplessness and brought them out as true and uncomfortable gifts for us left me breathless. …Courage doesn’t begin to describe what you are doing — there is something visceral, humanizing, something so disastrously hopeful it should make the cynic in us go away and weep in a corner.
I do hope more people will see this. As a theatre production, not televised or Youtubed. One has to be there, present in your presence, in all your wonderfilled, vulnerable, and victorious glory."
– Edward St. Moritz (May, 2019)
"Not only an excellent cellist, vocalist and writer....but a wonderful entertainer and story teller. Balancing truth, rawness, comedy and childhood abuse - she was captivating, simply excellent. If you missed it, you missed something very special...and something that is worthy of many stages!"
– Deb Maybury, March 2017
"I was completely bowled over by the magnitude of this show… this is the best live theatre show I have ever seen. Alyssa is a force of nature! Talent, expressiveness… And the subject matter did not drag the show into despair, it was BEAUTIFUL and COURAGEOUS AND TOUCHED ME SO DEEPLY. …this is as good as anything I’ve seen anywhere, including NYC."
– Hugh Hardy (May, 2019)
"…a power house! …It was so moving."
– Colleen Orr (May, 2019)
"A brilliant show: cleverly constructed, artfully nuanced, passionately and compellingly performed, and bravely written."
– Beth Foster, March 2017
– Susan Doolan, March 2017
"Moving, and very courageous. And that Swan... gasp!"
– Angela Lewis, March 2017
"You were astounding! Congratulations are due. On so many levels. You are the most courageous person I know."
– Marc Brenner (May, 2019)
"Having Alyssa tell her story was so powerful, seeing a person who has gone through all that she has, up there and just glowing with surety of purpose. I was constantly being tossed back and forth between the reality of her past, and the strength and courage of her present… Both the staging, and her brilliant musicianship created a magic that we were all privileged to have witnessed."
- B.A. (May, 2019)
"i witnessed a brave and wonderful thing tonight - Alyssa Wright's (there's-no-such-thing-as-a-) one-woman show, "Music for the Changing Voice". ...so beautifully done"
– Paul Court, March 2017
"Brilliant, moving, deep, truth-telling at its best. I don't know where to start and stop praising and acknowledging Alyssa Wright's supremely courageous creativity and her team of musicians, Ray Dillard and Leslie Arden. What a show! Thank you!"
– Ed Moll, March 2017
"I was completely blown away by your performance on Wednesday. It was like watching an Olympic Athlete… someone who’s worked hard, been through many battles, and now has singular focus on the task at hand. It was courageous and vulnerable (Brené Brown would argue those words mean the same thing). Something that I’ll remember and be inspired by for years to come."
– Angie Nussey (May, 2019)
"The song ‘Katie’ was a tsunami, and I hope this song reaches as many people as possible, as well as your performance. ...Your courage is immense and when your story is leavened with your wonderful humour it is increasingly potent & moving."
– Marlene Hilton Moore, March 2017