Ann Martin-Davis


photocredit: Malcolm Crowthers/ Ann Martin-Davis

sound bites 

Nigella Lawson recipe songs

A rehearsal of Bernstein's 'La Bonne Cuisine' and a glass of cheeky red prompted Ann Martin-Davis to commission two new recipe song cycles from Graham Fitkin and Howard Skempton.  This stunning project is inspired by ‘How to Eat’ by  and was nominated for the Royal Philharmonic Society's Audience Development Award.

Sound Bites takes the listener through a melodic menu, starting with vegetarian Fitkin, through to darkly meaty recipes of the Bernstein and onto the clarity of Skempton’s moules and baked sauterne custard.

The Sound Bites are delivered at the table (an enormous pink tablecloth on which the piano sits and a metre wide white porcelain plate and fork on which the singer, Susan Legg, is served). Short introductory readings take the audience through a seamless and shamelessly gluttonous production.

NEW for this season - ‘Hommàge a Fanny’ - a tribute to Fanny Cradock and the glory days of 70’s cooking. 

Accompanied to the sounds of the Jimmy Smith style Hammond organ, marvel at the sheer audacity of Fanny’s Sputnik Sausages or her Chicken Aspic Towers.


As well as traditional concert venues, the Sound Bites have been performed at restaurants, where Nigella's recipes are cooked up (e.g. at the Cheltenham Festival within Brasserie Blanc) and within more intimate spaces (e.g. Village Halls in Nottinghamshire, where local WI's created the recipe song 'Lime-Jello-Marsh-Mallow-Cottage-Cheese-Surprise').

Sound Bites was premiered at Salisbury International Arts Festival and was supported by ACE, PRS Foundation, The Royal Shakespeare Company Pops Department.