For 2010, Neil was commissioned with long-term writing colleague Michael Eaton to write ‘Waves Breaking on a Shore’, two afternoon plays for BBC Radio 4 dealing with the beginnings of cinema in the East End of London and the impact on the Music Hall of the day and London’s multiracial community.
Neil’s score for Hitchcock’s ‘Blackmail’ received its UK premiere at the Barbican Concert Hall on Oct 31st, 2010, performed by the BBC Symphony Orchestra
– see Reviews. There are plans in progress for a new score for October 2011.
Neil was selected as writer for an episode of Radio 4’s ‘Fact to Fiction’ season in which a radio play is written and broadcast within a week, dealing with a current news story. His comedy ‘Double Dip’ dealt with the Greek debt crisis.
Neil is being asked to perform regularly at the Cinematheque Francaise in Paris, as well as the Babylon Cinema, Berlin.
Neil has had two highly-acclaimed performances playing Loulou (Pandora’s Box) for the Cinematheque Francaise in Paris and the new restoration of Metropolis at the Babylon Cinema in Berlin.
Neil had great success performing twice at 2009’s London Film Festival, once in Trafalgar Square with transport films showing London through the cinema’s eyes, and the following night at the Queen Elizabeth Hall with the Prima Vista Social Club (Gunter Buchwald, Romano Todesco, Denis Biason and Frank Bockius) for a gala Archive premiere of the BFI’s new restoration of Anthony Asquith’s UNDERGROUND (1928). The score was semi-improvised on themes written by Neil to great critical acclaim.
Following his appearances in 2009, discussing silent film music and the score to ‘Vertigo’, Neil has been broadcasting regularly on R4’s ‘Film Programme’ during 2009, analysing famous film scores including Casablanca, Jaws and The Pink Panther. In 2010 he looked back at the work of specific film composers.
Neil had two writing projects broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in December 2009 – a new 45-minute play, Headliner, dealing with the politics of stand-up comedy during an election in an ex-Soviet satellite country, and (with ‘Clare in the Community’ creator Harry Venning) a new six-part comedy series, Sneakiepeeks, about a covert surveillance team.
Neil’s score for the silent version of Hitchcock’s ‘Blackmail’ for 60-piece orchestra for the Bologna Film Festival was performed to enormous acclaim before 5000 people on July 1st 2008, in the Piazza Maggiore by the Opera House Orchestra of Bologna, conducted by Timothy Brock. Plans were made with the BBC Symphony Orchestra for a London premiere in 2010. See review.
Neil recently scored ‘The Wrecker’ (1929), directed by Géza von Bolváry, for DVD.