Susy Douch and her family enjoy an opportunity to visit The Forum for a truly unique experience.
We had visited the Art Deco former cinema that is The Forum Bath on previous occasions to see or listen to one of its huge variety of events hosted each year. The Forum was opened in May 1934 initially seating 2000. Throughout the years it became a dancing school and a bingo hall and is currently the home of Bath City Church.
For our latest visit to The Forum to see Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, complete with live orchestra and musicians, our group ranged from me, who had never seen a Spider-Man film, to two who had been to see the film at a standard cinema viewing and a life-long Spider-Man superfan who had already seen the film, “too many times to remember!”
Looking around the audience, it was clear that there were many such superfans, some even opting to dress for the occasion, although the gloved bodysuit presented hand washing challenges! There was a wide variety of ages from primary school children with parents up to adults.
The film introduces Brooklyn teen Miles Morales, and the limitless possibilities of the Spider-Verse, where more than one can wear the mask. The hip-hop based film score contains original music, showcasing elements of heroism and resilience, all complemented by song contributions from industry greats Post Malone, Lil Wayne, Jaden Smith and Nicki Minaj.
The music score for the box office hit was composed by multiple Golden Globe-nominee and Emmy-winning composer Daniel Pemberton. The show replicates the film’s score and soundtrack, fusing elements of orchestral with turntables and live DJ, as well as electronics and very clever percussion.
Alongside the enormous HD screen, the stage hosted a full orchestra, scratch DJ and percussionists. It was obvious that this was going to be a truly unique experience! There were small parts in the performance where the film narrative was overshadowed by the live music, particularly in the early scenes and towards the end where the fast-paced music builds to a crescendo.
However, for the majority of the film, the accompaniment was seamless and entertaining. Much of the score is at pace and quite how the stringed musicians managed to move their bows at such lightning speed was jaw-dropping. In addition to the orchestral team, DJ Blakey spun the turntables and another of the team perfectly replicated rapid keyboard typing and pen clicking!
After a short interval and a deserved rest for the orchestral team, we were back for the remainder of the film and the credits, music running all the way to the very last image, unsurprisingly, ending with rapturous applause and a standing ovation. This was a wonderful and incredible experience, clearly enjoyed by the whole audience from new viewers to superfans alike.
Whilst this was the last date of the current UK tour, The Forum is hosting a number of festive film and orchestral events before the end of the year including The Snowman, Love Actually, The Muppet Christmas Carol and The Snowman.
Further details and booking can be found online at www.bathforum.co.uk