Fugue

Her life as demanding as a Bach fugue, we follow Tatiana Clarke, an extremely talented violinist relaunching her career with a major concert in London. She has sold twelve tickets. Hereditary illness and trauma lurk through her schedule of practice and promotion. Each member of the family is a violinist: Tatiana, her mother Maria and her daughter Anna. Each must decide how to harmonise life with their art. FUGUE stars award-winning violinist Diana Galvydyte in her acting debut.

  • Will J. Wood
    Written, Produced and Directed by
  • Ryan Kilbourne
    Director of Photography
    Night Out (2022), Sleeping Elephant (2020)
  • Diana Galvydyte
    Key Cast
    "Tatiana Clarke"
  • Kitty Dunham
    Key Cast
    "Anna Clarke"
  • Judy Tcherniak
    Key Cast
    "Dame Maria Clarke"
  • Afia Abusham
    Key Cast
    "Sam"
  • Will J. Wood
    Key Cast
    "Lou"
  • Mollie Semple
    Key Cast
    "Agent"
  • Sara Hazemi
    Key Cast
    "Presenter"
  • Leo Benedict
    Key Cast
    "Doctor"
  • Emily Webster
    Key Cast
    "Engineer"
  • Antonio Delle Monache
    Gaffer
  • James Handley
    1st AC
  • Guy Fixsen
    Sound
  • Apolline Bökkerink
    Hair and Makeup
  • Harry Balden
    Runners
  • Veronica Maier
    Runners
  • Will J. Wood
    Editors
  • Artem Romanov
    Editors
  • Guido Balbo
    Poster by
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Drama, Music, LGBT
  • Runtime:
    22 minutes 30 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 1, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    12,000 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    Yes
  • Student Project:
    No
Director Biography

Will J. Wood is a writer-director and actor currently based in London. After recently graduating from Cambridge University, he is studying acting with Sir Timothy Ackroyd and working on multiple projects including a short film FUGUE and workshopping his musical play END OF THE LINE, originally produced in Cambridge and which enjoyed a sell-out run, praised by reviewers as “a well-written and -executed production” (TCS) and “a story about human connection, community, and the little (wo)man against the big corporation” (Varsity). He can be often found at poetry readings in East London or walking his labrador Frodo down Regents Canal with a cup of peppermint tea.

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Director Statement

"We were able to achieve FUGUE through a perfect synergy of actors, musicians and filmmakers. With old friends (I'd worked with DP Ryan Kilbourne on MAGPIES LOVE MIRRORS, a series for Cambridge Footlights), and new, we found a creative, determined and reckless synchronicity during our shoot in London, that brought together live music performance, acting and filming all in the same, glorious moment. The initial idea for FUGUE came to me listening to Bach and all of his modern interpreters through the covid crisis, considering humans who make such sacrifices for their art, and which probably leaves them much better communicators through music than through speaking. A fugue is a piece of one or two simple themes that repeat, harmonize and spiral throughout multiple voices, and to have a vision of life as ordered and yet as chaotic as a fugue struck me as a thoroughly unique, queer and probably tormenting idea for a short. I had other projects on but Tatiana Clarke sat beside me every day at breakfast and told me off for not making her film. Eventually I agreed with her.

Tatiana isn't religious, but she believes in god. Her sacrifice--weeks of hours of practice, for concerts that never near selling out--is faith in the ritual slaughter of ourselves, our time, our concentration as a human service to creations and to creativity. Tatiana is also love: to her daughter, to her massive collection of potted plants, to her violin and bow, and bumping into Sam one day near the Barbican she sends out love and gets love in return. In this way I don't feel she'd call herself 'lesbian', or 'bisexual'--but she would be comfortable being 'loving' or 'queer' (with an eye-twinkling wink). Tatiana, then, is god's gift to JS Bach, the living continuity his relentless sonatas deserve, and Sam--a grieving grown-up daughter with an empty flat in central London--is god's gift to Tatiana. Tatiana Clarke is a lesson in non-compromise: practice, practice, practice, and love it all."