April 27, 2010
Damon Albarn researching 'hermetic
magic and philosophy' for new opera
The Alan Moore and Jamie
Hewlett venture will be about the life of John Dee
Mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, occultist,
navigator and imperialist
John Dee (more info from
Damon Albarn has
revealed that he is reading about "hermetic magic and
catalysts and philosophy" in preparation for writing his new
The joint project between Albarn, Jamie Hewlett and comic
book writer Alan Moore will be about a 16th century
mathematician and astronomer.
"It's based on the life of John Dee, who was
a very influential force in Elizabethan Europe, especially
England," Albarn told
NYMag.com "He was responsible for creating the concept of
the British Empire. So he affects all our
lives in one way or another. He was an alchemist. It's about
Despite working on the subject matter for the venture, the
Blur and Gorillaz man admitted that he has "not
really" been working on the musical side of the project,
although has "an idea of how it's going to sound".
"This will be the first time I've stopped writing for six
months," he explained. "I've just been reading about Hermetic
magic and catalysts and philosophy, which is what all of his [Dee's]
stuff is based on — Euclid and
Pythagoras and all of that stuff. It's a lot. And
it's been brilliant."
Albarn and Hewlett made
their operatic debut, creating 'Monkey: A Journey To The
West', which debuted in 2007.
added June 14, 2010:
Gorillaz not set to work with Alan
Moore on opera project
io9.com, Moore has revealed he is no
longer working with Damon Albarn and Jamie
Hewlett on the project.
"I should dash cold water on anybody's dreams of this
Doctor Dee opera with Damon Albarn and
Gorillaz," he said speaking at the Magus
Conference in Northampton. "It
didn't work out shall we say".
Going on to explain he had already "wrote a third of it", the
writer added that "nobody had done anything else upon the
opera" and that other commitments from both parties had
decided the fate of the project.
"I decided I had too many commitments as well," Moore
admitted. "And since I had never received any money or a
contract, I was alright saying, "Yeah, I'm pulling out of
this. You can do your own opera about Dr. Dee,
I don't own Dr. Dee, I don't own the concept