James Bonas and Topi Lehtipuu form innovative production company
Director James Bonas and tenor Topi Lehtipuu have formed a new production company, New Studios, alongside international colleagues, with the aim of bringing different art forms to the screen in new ways.
Their stated mission is to ‘revolutionise the way we experience the language of opera, dance and circus on screen, inspired by the energy, dynamism and inventiveness of music videos, and embracing the growing popularity of short form narrative.’
The first project is a series of one-minute films based on a palette of colours specially chosen by the artist David Hockney, with the first two films, Blue Raid and Catch Me, released released this weekend. The latter features animations by Grégoire Pont. Future plans range from scripted drama series to documentaries and anthologies.
Bonas said: ‘We set up New Studios as a way to reimagine Performing Arts on screens of all sizes, to make work that takes film as its starting point, and that celebrates all the amazing possibilities of the medium, while exploring the techniques and language of different art forms. The aim is to give audiences experiences of work they would never expect to encounter in a form that they hadn’t imagined.’
The two artists have long been committed to cross-arts collaboration. Most recently, Bonas co-created a dance film for Scottish Ballet, inspired by Yves Klein’s famous blue, and Lehtipuu danced as well sang Monteverdi in a project with Third Practice.