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Swan Lake rehearsal photographs

December 13th, 2013 by Helen

The Swans

In October I was commissioned to take rehearsal photographs for Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake in East London.

The swans reahersal for Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake

The ballet famously features male swans. Watching them rehearse felt like a privileged experience, professional dancers always make the performance appear effortless on stage, but in rehearsal you can see the concentration, expertise and sheer physicality the performance requires. The dancers drip with sweat as they are put through their paces, they gasp for breath as they put their heart and soul into every move. I was sitting at the very front and despite having a camera between me and the action I was surprised by how much the emotions affected me. The swans were so fierce, and the scenes towards the end are so emotional, I felt myself welling up in the final few moments.

Jonathan Ollivier (The Swan) protects Sam Archer's Prince Rehearsals for Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake Luke Jackson rehearsing for Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake

Jonathan Ollivier as The Swan and Sam Archer as The Prince

Above, Jonathan Ollivier‘s Swan stands over Sam Archer‘s The Prince.

Sam Archer (The Prince) and Michela Meazza (The Queen)

Michela Meazza (the Queen) holds Sam Archer (the Prince).

I cannot recommend Swan Lake highly enough, it is currently showing at Sadler’s Wells until January 26th when it goes on a national and international tour.

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Matilda the Musical

December 10th, 2013 by Helen

Produciton photograph for Matilda the Musical

Here are some of the production photographs I took for Matilda the Musical in the summer.

Elise Blake as Matilda with Alex Gaumond as Miss Trunchbull

A perfectly menacing Alex Gaumond was making his debut as the horrible Miss Trunchbull.

RSC's Matilda the Muscial

James Clyde as Mr Wormwood

James Clyde is the new Mr Wormwood.

Lollie McKenzie plays Matilda

Lollie McKenzie one of the four young actresses playing the eponymous heroine.

The young cast of RSC's Matilda the Muscial Matilda the Musical Kay Murphy (Mrs Wormwood) and Joshua Lay (Rudolpho) James Clyde as Mr Wormwood

Please click on the thumbnails to see larger images.

Lollie McKenzie as Matilda and Haley Flaherty as Miss Honey

Miss Honey is played by the brilliant Haley Flaherty.


Lisa Davina Phillip as Mrs Phelps The older cast members swing through the air on the swings in Matilda the Musical Matilda

Lollie McKenzie as Matilda and Haley Flaherty as Miss Honey

The young cast of Matilda the Musical

I have said it before on this blog, and at the risk of repeating myself I’ll say it again, Matilda is one of the best shows in the West End. Tim Minchin‘s score is so catchy that I always come out of the Matilda shoots with the songs stuck in my head for days, and the script is funny and inventive. The new cast are uniformly excellent. But don’t trust my opinion, there are so many excellent reviews out there.

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Jack and the Beanstalk

December 2nd, 2013 by Helen

Stevie Webb, Howard Ward and Rochelle Rose in costume.

It’s nearing Christmas which means it’s time for Panto (Oh no it isn’t. Oh yes it is.) Back in October the Lyric Hammersmith asked me in to take some promotional images of the cast of Jack and the Beanstalk. Stevie Webb plays Sprout, Rochelle Rose is Jack and Howard Ward makes his Dame-debut as Moreen Dripp.

Howard Ward as Moreen Dripp in Jack and the Beanstalk Rochelle Rose as Jack in Jack and the Beanstalk Stevie Webb as Sprout in Jack and the Beanstalk

Lyric Hammersmith made a video to promote the show during my photoshoot, so if you want to see some interviews with the cast (and a bit of me shooting the actors) then take a look:

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Lia and Deb’s Hindu wedding

November 15th, 2013 by Helen

Lia and Deb kiss

Last weekend I photographed Lia and Deb’s Hindu wedding ceremony at the Clay Oven Banqueting Suite. I photographed the couple’s civil wedding in September and I was delighted to be asked back to photograph their religious wedding.

Lia preparing for her wedding day

The couple and their friends and family got ready at the The Fox & Goose Hotel. Lia looked fantastic in her traditional Sari she had made for the occasion by Impressions in Ilford. Please click on the thumbnails to see larger images.

The bride had henna on her hands and arms Lia with her mum and bridesmaid A black and white photo of the bride on the morning of her Indian wedding

I was also able to go to Deb’s room where he was getting ready with his father.

Deb's father helps do up his buttons of his sherwani

The bride's bangles The groom on his wedding day Close up of the details of Deb's wedding sherwani

We went to the venue where Mr Nihar Banergee, a long-standing friend of Deb’s family conducted the ceremony.

Mr Nihar Banergee conducting the wedding ceremony

Deb seated in the mandap

Deb seated in the mandap, awaiting his bride.

Kriss saying the opening prayer, invocation and benediction Deb arrives - the barabarana Jane hugs Deb during the barabarana

Tom helps lift the silken sheet above Lia and Deb

Lia’s brother Tom helped lift a silken sheet over the couple’s head in preparation for the Saatpaak, where Lia walked around Deb seven times symbolising their becoming bound together.

The Mala badal - exchanging garlands three times

Lia and Deb exchange garlands during the Mala badal.

Lia's family smile as they watch the ceremony


Deb's proud father Jay watches the ceremony Food and ghee for the ceremony The Indian wedding of Lia and Deb

Deb and Lia smile shortly before the Ashirbad begins

Deb and Lia smile and hold hands before the Ashirbad (blessings) begin

A black and white photograph of the bride and groom kissing

Deb and Lia cut their wedding cake

The cutting of the cake.

Deb's father enjoys the wedding reception The wedding cake Enjoying the wedding reception

Deb's father Jay makes his speech

Deb’s father Jayanta gave a lovely speech about his son.

Enjoying the speeches A guest making a toast Deb and Lia enjoy the best man's speech at their wedding

The best man and his Optimus Prime

The best man was Rishi, seen here holding his childhood Optimus Prime toy, a gift for Deb.

Dancing at the wedding reception Guests enjoying Deb and Lia's reception Lia's Dad Kriss with the wedding guests

A portrait of Deb and Lia on their wedding day


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Julius Caesar poster in New York

October 30th, 2013 by Helen

Julius Caesar Poster featuring a photo of Harriet Walter by Helen Maybanks

Last year I took the production photography of the Donmar’s Julius Caesar directed by Phyllida Lloyd. The production is currently in New York at St Ann’s Warehouse where is receiving brilliant reviews. The company used my image of Harriet Walter in the promotional posters.

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Kevin and Jim’s civil partnership

September 27th, 2013 by Helen

A portrait of Jim and Kevin on their civil partnership day

Last weekend I photographed the civil partnership of Kevin and Jim.

Kevin ties Jim's cravat on the morning of their civil partnership

I started at the Mercure Hotel Greenwich where the couple were getting ready.

A close up of the cravat Putting on the engraved cufflinks Kevin looks in the mirror, whilst being watched by Jim

Getting a black can to the venue

Kevin and James had booked a wedding Black cab to get to the venue.

The Tudor Barn Eltham set up for the civil partnership ceremony

For my second consecutive wedding I was at the Eltham Tudor Barn in South East London. The beautiful flowers were from LimeGinger.

Kevin puts on Jim's button hole

The civil partnership of Kevin and Jim at Eltham Tudor Barn

Jim and Kevin’s family and friends gathered to watch their ceremony. Two of their sisters gave readings, please click on the thumbnails to see larger images.

A wedding reading Kevin and Jim walk into their wedding ceremony holding hands Jim's family laugh during the vows

Kevin says his vows to an emotional Jim

Jim and Kevin have confetti thrown on them

Jim and Kev stand on the bridge on the moat at the Well Hall Pleasaunce

We took some photographs in the Well Hall Pleasaunce at the back of the barn.

Kev and Jim

A guest enjoying the drinks reception Young guests looking at the moat Tudor Barn Eltham

A guest enjoying the reception Kev and Jim walking through the Well Hall Pleasaunce Janet enjoys the reception

Jim's dad Howard makes his speech

Jim’s Dad Howard made a funny speech about his son and new son-in-law.

Jim's mum Kath Kevin listens to his husband's speech Jeanette enjoys the speeches

The wedding cake with two grooms

Jim and Kev cut their stylish wedding cake

Cutting the very stylish wedding cake.

Kev and Jim's first dance

One of the young guest's teddy bear in a wedding dress An emotional first dance The wedding breakfast menu with Kev and Jim's logo

Jim and Kev - a potrait on their wedding day

Kevin and Jim.

To see more of my photography please take a look at the civil partnership photography section of my website.

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Video of Toby and Madeleine’s wedding

September 26th, 2013 by Helen

In August I photographed the wedding of Madeleine and Toby. Andy Brownstone at Brownstone Films was the videographer and here is the beautiful video he shot of the day.

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Lia and Deb’s wedding

September 20th, 2013 by Helen

Lia and Deb walking through the Well Hall Pleasaunce

Recently I was in Eltham for the wedding of Lia and Deb.

The bride has her make-up applied on the morning of her wedding

I started in Leytonstone where Lia was getting ready in her parents’ house with her bridesmaids Sara, Nell and Amy, her Male of Honour Jeremy and parents Jane and Kriss. Please click on the thumbnails to see larger images.

Lia's Mum Jane The 1930s Austin taxi that took Lia to her wedding Jeremy, The Male of Honour

Sara and Nell practise their bridesmaid's walk Wedding bouquet by Night Feather Design Lia's cat

Lia and Kriss in the 1930s Austin Taxi

Lia and her father Kriss travelled to the wedding venue in a beautiful 1930s Austin Taxi. The wedding was held at the Tudor Barn Eltham in South-East London.

Deb waiting for Lia's arrival

Deb saying his wedding vows to Lia

The couple had written their own wedding vows.

Lia's grandmother watches the wedding ceremony Lia and Deb listen to the registrar at Tudor Barn Eltham Jeremy sheds a tear during the wedding ceremony

Lia and Deb walk up the aisle

Lia and Deb by the fountain in the Well Hall Pleasaunce

After the ceremony we went behind the Barn into the Well Hall Pleasaunce to take some portraits. Lia looked beautiful in her wedding dress by Night Feather Design.

Deb and Lia on their wedding day

The Tudor Barn Eltham laid out for the wedding reception

Scrabble table settings at Lia and Deb's wedding Lia and Deb walk through Well Hall Pleasaunce The wedding cake with edible A-Z, scrabble and books

The Wedding Grub ticket

Lia works in theatre so there were lots of lovely touches including the ‘Wedding Grub’ tickets for the dinner. Gill, a friend of Lia’s mum, made the amazing wedding cake with edible scrabble pieces and a London A-Z on it.

Lia and Deb enjoy Kriss's Father of the Bride speech

Kriss speaks about his daughter Lia Deb smiles whilst 'checking tickets' Guests laughing at the speeches

The groom's speech

Lia listens to Deb's speech at Tudor Barn Eltham in South-East London

The best man's speech Deb's dad Jay Laughing at the Best Man's speech

 A young guest enjoying the wedding reception

Tim the singer

The band were called The Tiny Ugly Band and are friends of the couple’s from University. Singer and keyboardist Tim wrote a brilliant song about the couple, called ‘What’s in a name?’ before launching into the first dance: Grow Old With Me.

Lia and Deb enjoy the wedding song

Lia and Deb's first dance  Dancing at the wedding reception Lia and Deb's first dance Lia and bridesmaid Sara on the dancefloor

The guests enjoying the wedding band Dancing at the wedding reception Dancing at the disco

The bride and groom walk hand in hand


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Punchdrunk – The Drowned Man

September 17th, 2013 by Helen

The poster for Punchdrunk's 'The Drowned Man'

A few weeks ago I took some promotional images for Punchdrunk‘s new show, The Drowned Man. The company already had production images but needed two more symmetrical images for the centre of the poster. We set up studio lighting and worked with the very talented cast to get the two images of the man and woman you can see above. A big thanks to my two excellent assistants on the day, Elliott Wilcox and Claudia Legge. For anyone who hasn’t heard of Punchdrunk I would thoroughly recommend them, The Drowned Man is getting excellent reviews and is currently booking until December.

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Kimberley and Iain’s wedding

September 13th, 2013 by Helen

The bride and groom at the Goring Hotel in London

Last week I photographed the wedding of Kimberley and Iain.

Kimberley's wedding bouquet

Kimberley putting on her earrings at the Goring Hotel

Kimberley got ready at The Goring Hotel, where I captured her having the finishing touches applied to her hair and make-up.

The bride has her hair finished at The Goring Hotel in London Bridal high-heals by Benjamin Adam Kimberley smiles to the camera

Kimberley looked beautiful. She wore shoes by Benjamin Adams. Please click on the thumbnails to see larger images.

The wedding of Kimberley and Iain at Kensington and Chelsea Register Office

The couple were married in the Rossetti Room at Kensington and Chelsea Register Office on the King’s Road in London. Kimberley and Iain were joined by their good friends Dawn and Dermot who acted as witnesses to the marriage.

The bride smiles at Chelsea Old Town Hall

Iain and Kimberley on their wedding day Exchange of rings at Chelsea Old Town Hall Dermot, Iain, Kimberley and Dawn

The bride and groom walk out the front of Chelsea Old Town Hall

The couple left the Register Office and popped by St Mary’s Church to light a candle before going back to The Goring Hotel for lunch and champagne.

Kimberley and Iain on the steps of The Goring Hotel in London

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