Updated: Dec 1, 2022
Author Sam Kenyon talks with actor Alex Wingfield about bringing I am not Raymond Wallace to life for audiobook listeners, self-discovery and 'trespass' in the arts.
Manhattan, 1963: weeks before the assassination of President Kennedy, fresh-faced Raymond Wallace lands in the New York Times newsroom on a three-month bursary from Cambridge University. He soon discovers his elusive boss, Bukowski, is being covertly blackmailed by an estranged wife, and that he himself is to assist the straight-laced Doty on an article about the ‘explosion of overt homosexuality’ in the city. On an undercover assignment, a secret world is revealed to Raymond: a world in which he need no longer pretend to be something or someone he cannot be; a world in which he meets Joey.
Like so many men of his time and of his kind, Raymond faces a choice between conformity, courage and compartmentalisation. The decision he makes will ricochet destructively through lives and decades until—in another time, another city; in Paris, 2003—Raymond’s son Joe finally meets Joey.
I am not Raymond Wallace is a multi-stranded story of queer redemption spanning multiple generations, told with precision-tooled prose, sharply-imagined settings and compassionately-observed characterisation.
SAM KENYON is a writer, composer, performer and teacher. He studied English Literature at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, before training in Musical Theatre at the Royal Academy of Music.
After performing for twelve years, he developed a career as a composer and lyricist. At the Royal Shakespeare Company, he provided music and lyrics for The Christmas Truce (2014), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2016) and Vice Versa (2017). He wrote the book, music and lyrics for Miss Littlewood—a musical exploring the life of Joan Littlewood—which opened at the RSC in 2018, and which is published by Concord Theatricals. He is currently developing a musical about Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas and Samuel Steward.
As a voice teacher, he works across styles and genres, with theatre, film and recording artists. He teaches at the Royal Academy of Music, as well as running a private teaching practice. He lives in London with his partner, Mitch, and their daughter. I am not Raymond Wallace is his first novel.
ALEX WINGFIELD trained in Musical Theatre at the Royal Academy of Music, having graduated from Durham University, where he gained First Class Honours in Music. Since graduating, he has worked primarily on stage. He also has experience in many fields of Voice Work, including audiobook narration, educational voiceovers, ADR, dubbing and animation.
Buy the book, I am not Raymond Wallace
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